The second quarter report made by the Region 10 office of the National Economic Development Authority (NEDA) showed that coconut-based products and fresh fruits remained as the region’s major exports, earning $170.97 million.

Coconut products represented a share of 63 percent of the regional total, followed by fresh fruits with an 11 percent share. Among the major export gainers were fresh fruits (586 percent), iron and steel (500 percent), and coconut-based products (399 percent). Special transactions jumped 1,045 percent from 0.11 to 1.26 million dollars of the second quarter last year.

“This quarter, the region exported a total of $269.34 million worth of products, an overwhelming 180 percent increase over the same period last year,” the report said.

Almost 50 percent of this came from Misamis Oriental, the region’s consistent dollar earner. At second place is Lanao del Norte that captured 27.64 percent of the total exports.

Except for Camiguin, the rest of the provinces posted substantial growth in exports indicating a huge demand for local products abroad. Misamis Occidental, although contributing only 11 percent of the total, registered the highest exports growth, from only $120,000 in the second quarter of 2009 to $28.7 million in the second quarter of 2010.

This tremendous increase was brought about by the resumption of the operation of two oil mills and two frozen prawn processing plants located in the province.

Lanao del Norte’s main export of crude coconut and cochin oil valued at $94.29 million, acccounted for over a third of total export earnings of the region.

Oleochemicals, another coconut-based product, was the second biggest export earner, amounting to $55.71million, or 20.68 percent of the regional total. Fresh bananas landed third among the top 10 exports of the region, accounting for 21 percent of total.

“The surge in demand for bananas in the foreign market resulted in expansion of farm operations of some Davao-based companies located in Bukidnon such as Soriano Fruit Corporation, Stanfilco, DOLE Phils (North Skyland Zone) and AMS Farming Corporation,” the report said.

The value of the region’s top 10 exports in the second quarter is almost four-fold its value in the same quarter last year. Moreover, the sales of six of the 10 export commodities are now in double-digit figures, compared to only two in the previous comparable period.

article by NEF LUCZON of Manila Bulletin

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