Dagupan City eyed as aquaculture zone

Eva Visperas - The Philippine Star

DAGUPAN CITY, Philippines – This city known as the bangus (milkfish) capital is being eyed as an aquaculture zone north of Manila by the Philippine Economic Zone Authority (PEZA).

Last Feb. 16, Emmanuel Lopez of PEZA met with city officials to discuss the possibility of the city hosting an aquaculture zone.

Lopez said the city may venture into packaging and branding of its Bonuan bangus, which is now being tagged as Dagupan’s Best.

He said strengthening the city’s aquaculture industry was a step in the right direction.

Lopez also noted that the city’s strength is not on its land area but on its young people as well, aside from the city’s aquaculture industry.

This is in lieu of the fact that Dagupan is considered as the center of education in the north due to the presence of three universities, several colleges and other educational institutions.

 Lopez said Dagupan just needed to improve the technical skills of the present generation to cope with evolving technology.

“Sooner or later, artificial intelligence will replace the traditional call centers and we need to be ready for it,” Lopez said.

Lopez also lauded the land use planning initiative undertaken by Mayor Belen Fernandez. The new Comprehensive Land Use Plan is now subject of approval by the Housing and Land Use Regulatory Board in Manila.

“It’s a good thing that you recognized the city’s hazards. That’s where good planning starts,” Lopez said.

 At the end of the day, what Dagupan needs is a system that works to be a potential economic zone, he added.

He pointed out that Singapore also has a limited land of only 400 square kilometers, yet it is already on top among Southeast Asian nations in terms of economic growth.

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