PHILIPPINES: Mining the Last Frontier

Lucrative mining projects backed by foreign investors are destroying forests and threatening indigenous tribes who live off the land in the Philippines’ Palawan. Aljazeera’s 101 East explores if a balance could be struck between development and local interests.

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PHILIPPINES: ILO and Finnish embassy ink deal helping indigenous peoples

By Jovan Cerda (philstar.com) Updated February 29, 2012 02:12 PM

MANILA, Philippines – The International Labor Organization (ILO) and the Embassy of Finland in Manila signed an agreement last Monday to increase support to indigenous peoples in the Philippines, a statement released Wednesday noted.

The deal between Finnish Ambassador Heikki Hannikainen and Lawrence Jeff Johnson, director of the ILO country office for the Philippines, aims at responding to the needs of the T’boli and Ubo tribes in Lake Sebu, South Cotabato, ILO said.

Starting in 2000, ILO said the partnership built a community-based micro-enterprise in Palawan that processes wild honey, cashew nuts, rice and corn. Indigenous people involved in the enterprise also identified and implemented projects like water systems, agricultural development and food production.

“In Lake Sebu, South Cotabato, the T’boli tribe learned about their rights as indigenous peoples. Tribal houses were built to display and sell their products and to host traditional ceremonies, meetings and even as a place to settle conflicts and disputes,” ILO said. More

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