A gateway to historic landmarks, eco-tourism thrills and rich agri resources
Cagayan de Oro, the capital of Misamis Oriental province, has lived up to its history of being a center of commerce and education in Northern Mindanao.
During the Spanish era, what was then called “Cagayan de Misamis” served as the seat of the government in Mindanao. The town was able to retain its status as the center of commerce, migration, and education in Northern Mindanao even during the American period. On June 15, 1950, by virtue of Republic Act No. 521, the town was finally granted its city charter and was named Cagayan de Oro City. It was declared a highly urbanized city in 1983.
Over the last decade, Cagayan de Oro has appeared in the radar of many investors, businesses and even migrants owing to a number of reasons that include its strategic location, availability of opportunities, and safe environment. It is considered as one of the most competitive cities in the country today and has remained, in recent years, a driver of economic growth in the region.
In 2014, the city was recognized as an “emerging city of tomorrow” by the United Nations Human Settlements Programme, the only Philippine city and one of only two Southeast Asian cities included in the list that year.
Known as “City of Golden Friendship,” Cagayan de Oro was also considered one of the safest cities in Southeast Asia in 2017, ranking seventh out of 28 cities in crowd-sourced rating site Numbeo’s South-Eastern Safety Index report.
From 2018 to 2020, this regional center was the main contributor to the economy of Northern Mindanao, registering the largest average share of 27.1 percent, equivalent to P226.84 billion of the P837.04 billion regional economy.
The city was also deemed as the second most competitive highly urbanized city in Visayas and Mindanao (after Davao City) as it ranked seventh out of 33 cities in the 2021 Cities and Municipalities Competitive Index of National Competitiveness Council. It also ranked seventh in the infrastructure pillar.
This burgeoning city of over 700,000 people provides easy access to an enormous concentration of markets in Northern Mindanao, owing to its proximity to key facilities and major thoroughfares.
Located approximately 20 km from Cagayan de Oro, the Mindanao Container Terminal has allowed direct and cost-efficient movement of containerized cargo to Manila, Cebu and international shipping hubs, reinforcing the agro-industrial sectors in Northern Mindanao.
The port of Cagayan de Oro, one of the busiest government ports in Northern Mindanao, provides a strategic location for the entry and exit of passengers and goods to and from Cagayan de Oro and other provinces in the region, whereas the Laguindingan Airport services air logistics requirements. An extensive road network also leads to and from the major production areas and markets of Mindanao.
Jump off point
Local and foreign tourists will meanwhile find Cagayan de Oro as the ideal jump off point to nearby provinces with rich cultures and scenic destinations, including Camiguin, which is known for its luxurious beaches, hot springs, waterfalls and historic landmarks, as well as, the mountain ranges of Bukidnon, home to indigenous communities.
It also offers convenient access to Butuan and Surigao, which boast of eco-tourism thrills, Iligan City in Lanao del Norte, and Marawi City, home to the Maranao people, who are famed for their metal crafts, colorful dances, tapestry, and epic literature.
As a gateway to Southern Philippines, Cagayan de Oro also provides direct access to rich agricultural areas in Mindanao—the source of 40 percent of the country’s food and livestock.
Cagayan de Oro’s strategic location and rich agricultural resources have made it the preferred site of major agribusiness companies such as Del Monte Philippines, Nestlé Philippines, and other small and medium-sized agri-based industries.
Sources: Inquirer Archives, Philippine Statistics Authority, Numbeo, cagayandeoro.gov.ph, cmci.dti.gov.ph, ppa.com.ph, coa.gov.ph, bangsamoro.gov.ph
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