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Wednesday, July 17, 2024

French traders eyeing Davao, too

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DAVAO CITY—French businessmen are also interested in investing in this city, French Embassy Deputy Head Laurent Le Godec told reporters here ahead of a business mission from the European country.

Le Godec met with Mayor Sara Duterte on Monday to discuss possible business cooperation between France and Davao, which the diplomat considers “an important city in Mindanao.”

He was seeking the support of the city government for a possible business forum between French and local companies so they would be able “to find room to expand their economic cooperation.” The incoming French business delegation would attend this forum, Le Godec added.

The dialogue would enable French traders “to see for themselves what projects they can put up” in the city.

Le Godec also told Duterte an annual French film festival could also be held in the city for Davaoeños to appreciate French movies and culture. He underscored that France “has long realized the potential of Mindanao, particularly Davao City.”

The French government was also “confident of the city’s future, in terms of economic and business environment,” the diplomat said. 

City Hall rehab

In another development, the City Hall lobby and Commission on Audit office will undergo a P7-million rehabilitation after the flooring of these areas collapsed last Friday.

City Hall’s entire structure is made from wood, and was first constructed in 1926. The budget for the rehab will come from the Mayor’s Office funds.

City Engineer’s Office head Engineer Joseph Dominic Felizarta said they will need to close the city hall lobby for up to six months to retrofit the foyer and the COA office.

“We also looked at the foundation of the main lobby and we found out there are a lot of termites already,” Felizarta said.

The building’s underground is full of water that causes moisture on the flooring, the city engineer added. Because the building is mostly made of wood, termites have weakened its foundations as well.

Felizarta said CEO will now make cement columns to prop up the structure and avoid more collapses.

“This is so that we can avoid repetition of our job. Cement can also hold moisture better, unlike wood,” he said.

While construction is ongoing, most people can use City Hall’s back door as the main entrance and exit, while employees will use the building’s side doors, the engineer said.

After the COA office’s flooring collapsed, the department transferred to another office in City Hall to continue their jobs. Felizarta said there is no need for other offices to relocate, since the construction will only affect the lobby and the ground floor.

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