BALER, Aurora , Philippines – The provincial government has forged a sisterhood agreement with all municipalities of Guam in a landmark partnership that could develop and strengthen bilateral cooperation between the province and the US territory over a wide range of interests such as the field of business, commerce, science and technology, education, tourism, environment and human resource development.
The partnership was sealed during the signing of a five-year agreement between the provincial government, represented by Gov. Bellaflor Angara-Castillo and the municipalities of Guam through its Mayors’ Council represented by its vice president, Roke Blas, also the mayor of Sinajana town, Guam at Bahia de Baler in this capital town recently.
Also signatories to the agreement as witnesses were Council secretary Louise Rivera, vice mayor of Tamuning-Tumon-Harmon; Santa Rita Mayor Dale Alvarez; Umatac Mayor Dean Sanchez and council executive director Angel Sablan, all of Guam and House Deputy Majority Leader Juan Edgardo Angara, Baler Mayor Arthur Angara and the Sangguniang Panlalawigan led by its presiding officer, Vice Gov. Gerardo Noveras and board members Jervin Aliwak, Gregorio Agustin Jr., Joselito Cabauatan Sr., Pedro Ong Jr., Oscar Padua, Renato Pascua, Arthur Sanchez Sr., Mariano Tangson, Danilo Tolentino and Denia Valin.
The agreement involves business participation and promotion of respective fairs, expositions and conferences and cooperation between public and private companies and mutual support in terms of cultural resources, of tours, musical performances, co-productions and artistic programs as well as joint collaboration between colleges and universities and research centers.
Both parties have bound themselves to formulate an annual action program covering a work agenda, evaluation mechanism among others, the first of which is to come out within 60 days after signing of the agreement.
A working group will also be mobilized to coordinate each party’s activities, whose principal functions include identifying areas of common interests.
The agreement is deemed particularly crucial in the field of human resources improvement on the heels of the plan of Guam to hire as much as 15,000 construction and health workers, preferably Filipinos, to support the US government’s $15-billion military build up over six years.
Guam governor Felix Camacho who led a two-day Guam trade mission in the country recently, said the military build up in Guam followed after the transfer of the US Naval Base from Okinawa, Japan.