Leyte  Governor Dominic "Mic" Petilla. File Photo.
Leyte Governor Dominic “Mic” Petilla. File Photo.

TACLOBAN CITY,  (PNA) -– The Leyte provincial government is pushing for economic development initiatives in poorest villages to curb worsening poverty in Eastern Visayas.

Leyte Governor Leopoldo Dominico L. Petilla said that although increase in poverty incidence is expected, necessary interventions should be put in place to achieve inclusive growth in poor communities.

One mechanism is to build productive villages and get everyone in the community involved to make marketable products.

“For the coconut sector, we already asked the Philippine Coconut Authority (PCA) to shift activities from debris clearing to provision of livelihood such as inter-cropping, replanting, and pest management to hasten the development,” Petilla said.

Before super typhoon Yolanda struck, the local government had already started its economic development plans. It was revised recently into building resiliency through poverty alleviation.

“Our thrust is building resiliency against any disaster. Since poverty is a disaster, we are hoping that it will be solved,” Petilla said.

Although poverty incidence in the region rose by 12 percent to 54.6 percent during the first half of 2014, the official expects better economy this year due to massive assistance both from the national government and international non government organizations.

Petilla added that economic development is not only dependent on livelihood, but also with health, nutrition, social services, peace and order, and education programs. (PNA) LAP/SQM/LIZBETH ANN A. ABELLA/EGR