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DENR holds 1st National Land Summit

MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) will hold the first-ever National Land Summit aimed at discussing issues of the land sector and ensuring cooperation among land management and titling agencies in the country.

The “Forging Stronger Alliances and Bridging Networks” summit next week will address uncertainty, complexity and other problems associated with land ownership, with concerned government agencies working together to make land titling easier and faster.

Environment Secretary Roy Cimatu said improved land administration and management is one of the major programs of the DENR this year.

“Land titling is an issue that has hounded our country’s land sector for the longest time because of the number of agencies involved in the land titling process. We hope to solve this and create synergy among the concerned offices to make land titling faster and easier,” Cimatu said.

The event is also pursuant to Ambisyon Natin 2040, which represents the collective long-term vision and aspirations of the Filipino people for themselves and for the country in the next 25 years, which includes owning a medium-sized house in a lot registered under their names.

Cimatu said the government aims to achieve this by providing tenure security through land ownership and formal titles.

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The summit also supports Agenda No. 6 of the Duterte administration’s 10-point socioeconomic agenda, which aims to “ensure security of land tenure to encourage investments and address bottlenecks in land management and titling agencies.”

“Security of tenure is sacred for every Filipino and only a land title will seal ownership of it whether it is for personal or business use. The DENR is hitting hard on its goal to legitimize land ownership,” Cimatu said.

Apart from DENR, the country’s other three main titling agencies – the Department of Agrarian Reform, Land Registration Authority, and the National Commission on Indigenous Peoples will lead the event.

At the end of the summit, involved agencies are expected to present a declaration of commitment to address the bottlenecks in land administration and management to Cimatu to be forwarded to President Duterte.

In support of the government efforts to promote social equity, the DENR’s regional offices are tasked to distribute public agricultural lands to those in the rural areas and to take charge of the processing of agricultural and residential free patent applications.

Last year, the DENR launched the Land Administration and Management System-Philippines or LAMS which aims to hasten the processing and delivery of land-related services in the country, and promote transparency, accountability and integrity in the management of land records.

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