The Mines and Geosciences Bureau Regional Office No. XIII supported the initiative on the compilation and estimation of mineral accounts in Caraga Region which is spearheaded by the Phillipine Statistics Authority-Regional Statistical Services Office XIII (PSA RSSO XIII).
The Convening/Organization of the Steering Committee and Creation of Technical Working Group (TWG) for Caraga Asset Account for Mineral Resources was held on May 16, 2019 at the PSA RSSO XIII Training Room in Butuan City.
It was attended by representatives from different Regional Line Agencies involved in the study of mineral accounts. The meeting aimed to achieve the following objectives: organize the Steering Committee; create the Technical Working Group (TWG); determine the permanent members of the TWG; and finalize the Terms of Reference of the Steering Committee and the TWG. The primary purpose of the said meeting was to create the Steering Committee and the TWG. The Steering Committee must be composed of Regional Directors from the participating Regional Line Agencies.
Regional Director Rosalinda C. Apura of the Philippine Statistics Authority-Regional Statistical Services Office XIII (PSA RSSO XIII) presided over the meeting wherein she welcomed and acknowledged all the participants.
The System of Environmental-Economic Accounting (SEEA) was then presented by Ms. Presa P. Villarina, Supervising Statistical Specialist of PSA RSSO XIII. Ms. Villarina cited the project overview, objectives and expected outputs. She expounded on the foremost purpose of SEEA which is to measure the quantity and value of environmental assets as well as to record and explain changes in those assets over time. The SEEA Asset Classification includes mineral and energy resources, land, soil resources, timber resources, aquatic resources, other biological resources and water resources. She also stated that the general objectives of the project are the preparation and compilation of the Caraga Asset Account for Mineral Resources and the continued exploration of other environmental account. The result of the study will then be presented to the Steering Committee, Regional Development Council -Economic Development Committee (RDC-EDC), PSA Central Office, and Regional Development Council (RDC) Caraga. Correspondingly, the expected outputs include the Publication on Caraga Asset Account for Mineral Resources; the presentation of the Final Report to RDC Caraga and the Report on Exploratory Environmental-Economic Resource Accounting (ENRA) activities and/or the updated Environmental Account.
Mr. Melchor B. Bautista, Chief Statistical Specialist of PSA RSSO XIII, presented the final results of the land and timber asset accounts of Caraga Region. Mr. Bautista mentioned the different challenges encountered during the compilation of the land and timber asset accounts which was carried out in 2018. He stated that the challenges in the compilation of land and timber accounts may also be encountered in the compilation of Caraga Asset Account for Mineral Resources. On a positive note, he encouraged the participants to observe the challenges and heed the recommendations in order to resolve the issues.
The participants cited some challenges that may be encountered in the compilation of mineral resources such as accounting of the offshore mining and small-scale mining, valuation of minerals, and identification of the mineral composition of raw products (e.g. other mineral content of nickel ore). Mr. Bautista reminded the participants to raise these concerns during the Training on Compilation, Estimation and Analysis of Caraga Asset Account for Mineral Resources.
Mr. Bautista also discussed the summary outputs of Land Accounts and Timber Accounts. For land asset account, he stated that the major source of data was the Land Cover Area provided by the National Mapping and Resource Information Authority (NAMRIA). In the same way, he presented the physical asset account and monetary asset account of land from 2003 to 2015. The increasing trend of land conversion from agricultural land (crops and grassland areas) to built-up areas (artificial surfaces) was noted in his presentation.
The Terms of Reference for the Steering Committee and the Technical Working Group were presented by RD Apura. At first, she presented the terms of reference prepared for Land and Timber Resources. After a thorough discussion and deliberation, the body came up with the following Terms of Reference for the Caraga Asset Account for Mineral Resources:
• Steering Committee
a) provide overall direction in the implementation of the project; b) provide guidance to the Project Team especially the Technical Working Group (TWG) members; c) make itself available for consultation on the project’s technical aspects; d) review and monitor the progress and accomplishments of the project based on the work plan; and e) review the tables and draft report on Caraga Asset Account for Mineral Resources.
• Technical Working Group
a) facilitate/coordinate the collection of all statistics and other information needed for the project from their respective offices/agencies; b) monitor the progress of data collection activities; c) compile data and other related documents; d) match, estimate, and analyze data for mineral accounts; e) conduct a site visit; f) prepare the write-ups for the publication; g) identify other ways in analyzing the data; h) attend/participate in meetings/training/workshops as required; and i) review the tables and draft reports prepared by the Technical Staff before their presentation to the Steering Committee.
It was suggested by RD Apura that the composition of the Steering Committee for Caraga Mineral Asset Account will be the same as the Land and Timber Asset Account Steering Committee, excluding the Department of Agriculture and adding the Mines and Geosciences Bureau. The composition of the Steering Committee is as follows:
Chairperson : NEDA Regional Director
Vice Chairperson : PSA Regional Director
DENR Regional Executive Director
MGB Regional Director
Towards the end of the activity, RD Apura asked the participants to inform their respective Regional Directors of the suggested composition of the Steering Committee. She also stated that another meeting for the Steering Committee will be scheduled. The creation of the Technical Working Group (TWG) will follow after the creation of the Steering Committee.
While the organization of the Steering Committee is still underway, RD Apura suggested the continued conduct of the different line-up of activities as scheduled in order to achieve the expected outputs and deliverables on time.