RDC Committee initiates revival of weaving industry

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BAGUIO CITY – DOST-CAR, as vice chair of the Economic Development Committee, has spearheaded the drafting of the Cordillera Weaving Industry Development Plan. The much-needed revitalization of the weaving industry of the Cordillera was discussed during their 2nd Quarter committee meeting in Baguio on May 31, 2019.

DOST-CAR Regional Director Bantog shared that the plan is a collaboration of regional offices of DOST, DTI, NEDA, NCIP, DOLE, DOT, DSWD, CDA and TESDA with the University of the Philippine Baguio, Benguet State University, Philippine Fiber Industry Development Authority, and the National Commission for Culture and the Arts, through a memorandum of understanding. DOST-CAR held a forum on April 10 in Baguio City with concerned stakeholders from the academe, government agencies, weavers and local government units to gather insights on crafting the industry development plan.

Committee Chair and DTI-CAR Regional Director Myrna Pablo shared that weaving is one of the main reasons for the declaration of Baguio City as a UNESCO creative city for folk arts and crafts. UP Baguio Chancellor Raymundo Rovillos, added that the goal of the creative economy is the increasing the value of local products such as indigenous weaves. “The intensive labor, history, culture, and tradition all add to the value of the product”, he added. He also suggested that Cordillera fabrics are not intended for mass production which also justifies its current price level. Director Pablo said that DTI-CAR gives trainings on proper product pricing for the benefit of both the producers and consumers.

DOST-CAR eyes to have the development plan endorsed by the RDC this year. Notably, the Cordi month celebration led by the RDC Infrastructure Committee and the provincial government of Kalinga will feature Cordilleran fabrics in an all-age fashion show promoting indigenous weaving products by different designers from all over the region. Through the Regional Development Plan 2017-2022, NEDA-CAR aims to promote and develop the local weaving industry for improved export, employment, and income opportunities for the region.

By Marlo Lubguban

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