Incumbent Mayor Jose Espinosa III gives a speech before city hall department heads during the National Literacy Awards validation in Iloilo City.

    ILOILO City – This city maintains momentum as it gears toward nabbing the best local government unit (LGU) citations in the country this year. In 2018, it has won first place as the Most Improved LGU in the Highly Urbanized City category of the Cities and Municipalities Competitiveness Index (CMCI) Awards.

    The city government conducted a self-assessment on May 9 prior to its submission of documents to the CMCI portal before the May 15 deadline.

    The assessment covered the city’s performance in the previous year.

    The metropolis posted an increase of 8 percent in the number of registered businesses in 2018.

    The City Hall has set up a one-stop shop for processing of permits during renewal every January and has started improving its online registration system to make life easy for investors.

    The city also topped tourist arrivals in Western Visayas last year with increasing visitors drawn by tourism attractions and favored venue for Meetings, Incentives, Conventions, Exhibits (MICE).

    The city’s awards have attracted LGUs and organizations who wanted to benchmark the best practices and replicate the initiatives in their respective jurisdictions.

    The city jumped a big leap in overall most competitive ranking with a significant improvement to number 11 in 2018 from number 32 in 2017.

    The outstanding performance was attributed to the city’s excellent good governance with the strong partnership with stakeholders in bringing prompt and inclusive delivery of services to the people.

    Iloilo City ranked No. 4 in Government Efficiency, a feat to be rated first outside Manila, next to Top 3 which were all big cities in the National Capital Region.

    It placed No. 11 in Economic Dynamism and Resiliency categories.

    More than 1,500 LGUs are competing for the annual CMCI awards.

    The rating is developed by the National Competitiveness Council through the Regional Competitiveness Committees (RCCs) with the assistance of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).

    The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) noted that competitiveness attracts investors, thus creates more jobs while people deserve an efficient, effective, and responsive public service.

    President Rodrigo Roa Duterte urged LGUs to streamline  business permits and licensing procedures as mandated by Republic Act 11032 or Ease of Doing Business.

    CMCI awardees inspire other LGUs to improve their business climate.

    The City Government also underwent the 2019 Seal of Good Local Governance (SGLG) regional validation May 6 of the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG).

    SGLG is an assessment which LGUs need to pass the seven criteria on Financial Administration, Disaster Preparedness, Social Protection, Peace and Order, Business-Friendliness and Competitiveness, Environmental Protection, and Tourism, Culture and the Arts.

    Indicators include utilization of Internal Revenue Allotment (IRA) and Local Disaster Risk Reduction Management Fund (LDRRMF), compliance of ramps and toilets for Persons with Disabilities (PWDs), approval of 10-year solid waste management plan, convening of Peace and Order Council, and as finalist in Business-Friendly LGUs.

    If it passes, the DILG regional office will recommend the city for national assessment./PN


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