Situated right at the heart of southern Philippines, Central Mindanao stretches up north to Bukidnon, Lanao del Norte, Lanao del Sur and down to General Santos City and Sarangani. Serving as a catch basin of the uplands of Bukidnon, Davao del Sur, North Cotabato and Maguindanao is Liguasan Marsh. The marsh registers a 5-meter ASL at the center, making it the lowest point in the region. The flat lands surrounding the marsh are fertile grounds good for growing crops and other agricultural products.
The region, particularly North Cotabato is considered as Mindanao’s food basket providing rice, fruits and corn across Mindnao trade centers. The region also produces cereals, vegetables, sugarcane, coconut, coffee, freshwater fish and livestock.
However, conflicts on land and natural resource use draw deep economic divide among communities. Given this, the PAMANA program is being implemented in the provinces of Maguindanao, and North and South Cotabato. The Provincial PAMANA Technical Working Group has identified that a harmonization of conflicting land use policy among NGAs is a key to address peace and development issues.