Overview of SOCCSKSARGEN
SOCCSKSARGEN Region is strategically located in the western part of Southern Mindanao. It is surrounded by the abundant bays of Sarangani, Illana and Panguil, as well as the Moro Gulf and the Celebes Sea. This location of the region allows it to establish linkages with the growing economies of Malaysia, Brunei, Indonesia, Singapore and Japan.
The regions terrain is 28 percent undulating to rolling: only 18 percent of its land area is level to nearly level while 26 percent range from steep to very steep areas. Mountain ranges and valleys abound in both provinces comprising the region. It has an extensive and long coastline which stretches to 283 kilometers connecting three major bays; Illana, Panguil and Iligan Bays.
The region is largely of Type A climate which is characterized as wet and rainy. It ahs a high rainfall with an annual mean of 216.1 mm for a 10 year data from selected rainfall stations in the region. Being located in a typhoon-free area, it has rich potentials for agri-business and agri-industrial processing enterprises.
Component Provinces and Cities:
The newly reconfigured region is now composed of four (4) provinces, namely Cotabato, South Cotabato, Sultan Kudarat and Sarangani; and the five (5) cities of Cotabato, Koronadal, General Santos, Kidapawan and Tacurong.
As of the May 1, 2000 Census of Population and Housing, the regional population reached 3,222,169.
Advantages and Potentials
The SOCCSKSARGEN Region has several advantages and potentials which if fully tapped, can lead to a more economically dynamic region.
Strategic Geographic Location
Located in the southern part of the island Mindanao, the region is surrounded by the rich bays of Sarangani and Illana, as well as the Moro Gulf and Celebes Sea. This strategic location of the region enables it to establish trade and cultural linkages with the growing economies of Brunei, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Japan.
Furthermore, being located in a typhoon-free area, it has rich potentials for agribusiness ventures and agro-industrial processing enterprises.
Untapped Mineral, Geothermal, and Other Resources
One distinct advantage of the SOCCSKSARGEN Region is its rich and abundant natural resources which if properly and judiciously developed, could accelerate the regions economic growth. Aside from being the main source of hydroelectric power for Mindanao, the region has still other indigenous resources in terms of fertile land, rich fishery and unexplored mineral and geothermal resources which have remained undeveloped due to lack of investors. Among the mineral resources found in the region are gold, copper, iron, chromium, silver, zinc, clay gypsum, limestone and phosphate.
Skilled Labor Force
The region is endowed with a sizeable skilled labor force which can be harnessed for increased economic productivity.