The province of Palawan has been selected as one of the two pilot provinces of the provincial statistical system development project (PSSDP) of the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA).

The objective of the PSSDP is to increase local government units’ capacity in maintaining an efficient and orderly local statistical system that can be beneficial in their development planning endeavors. It proposes statistical coordination mechanisms that mirror those practiced at the national level, taking into account the administrative and political structure, as well as the financial capability of the provinces. Palawan, a big island province, has been chosen along with Batanes, a small island province, as pilot provinces of the project.

On August 16, 2016, a presentation of the PSSDP to the Sangguniang Panlalawigan (SP) of Palawan was held at the SP Session Hall in the Capitol Complex in Puerto Princesa City to gain the support and commitment of the province prior to implementation of the projects. Representatives of the PSA central office headed by Dr. Lisa Grace S. Bersales, National Statistician and Civil Registrar General, along with representatives of its provincial unit headed by Ms. Lalaine M. Rodriguez, Palawan Provincial Statistics Officer,  presented an overview of the project to Hon. Victorino Dennis M. Socrates, Vice Governor of Palawan, and the nine (9) Board Members of the province. Also present during the SP presentation were the members of the Provincial Planning and Development Office (PPDO) Research and Statistics Unit headed by the Provincial Planning and Development Coordinator Ms. Ninfa B. Rubio.

The next phase of the project was the training on the United Nations Framework for the Development of Environment Statistics (FDES) 2013 held at the A&A Plaza Hotel on September 13-15 organized by the PSA regional and provincial units. The training aimed to introduce the FDES 2013 as a tool in organizing environment statistics. The FDES 2013 is a statistical and conceptual framework that can be used as a guide in the development of environment statistics program. The FDES 2013 training was participated by representatives from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and the planning and development office of Palawan and Puerto Princesa.

The PSSDP is a product of decades long clamor for locally disaggregated data all over the country. The first initiative to cater to this demand was the Regional Statistical System Development Project (RSSDP) first implemented in 1987 by the National Statistical Coordination Board (NSCB) with financial backing from the United Nations Development Programme.

The project is a timely endeavor as the provincial government of Palawan through the PPDO as the lead office has recently engaged with other projects that heavily rely on statistical methodologies such as the CRGGP and the estimation of the provincial product accounts which is in line with the BIMP-EAGA progress monitoring intiative.

By: Jamie A. Lagrada, PPDO Palawan