The Municipality of San Mateo, Isabela has been ranked the 3rd Most Competitive Municipality for Government Efficiency category nationwide as a result of the Survey for the 2014 Cities and Municipalities Competitiveness Index (CMCI). No less than Mayor Crispina Agcaoili and Vice-Mayor Roberto Agcaoili of San Mateo were present to personally receive the Plaque of Recognition during the awarding ceremony at the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) on August 7, 2014. 

Awards were given to the top three cities and municipalities per category. While the National Capital Region swept the Economic Dynamism category with the cities of Parañaque, Makati, and Manila taking the top spots, the Government Efficiency category was dominated by cities outside Metro Manila. The top cities for Government Efficiency were Naga (Camarines Sur), Iloilo (Iloilo), and Angeles (Pampanga). For the Infrastructure category, the top cities were Davao (Davao del Sur), Cagayan de Oro (Misamis Oriental), and Marikina.

Among the municipalities, the most competitive for Economic Dynamism were Tanza (Cavite), General Trias (Cavite), and San Pedro (Laguna), all from Region IV-A, CALABARZON. The most competitive municipalities for Government Efficiency were Kalibo (Aklan), Tupi (South Cotabato), and San Mateo (Isabela). Finally, for Infrastructure, the most competitive municipalities were Daet (Camarines Norte), Rodriguez (Rizal), and Paniqui (Tarlac).

The CMCI 2014 featured a record number of 136 cities and 399 municipalities, up from 122 cities and 163 municipalities in the pilot run in 2013. Leading the roster of the most competitive cities this year were Makati City, Cagayan de Oro (Misamis Oriental), and Naga (Camarines Sur). For municipalities, Daet (Camarines Norte) was ranked the most competitive overall, followed by General Trias (Cavite) and Kalibo (Aklan).

The CMCI  is an annual ranking of Philippine cities and municipalities developed by the National Competitiveness Council through the Regional Competitiveness Committees (RCCs) with the assistance of the United States Agency for International Development. It measures competitiveness at the local government level using 28 indicators grouped into three equally-weighted pillars: Economic Dynamism, Government Efficiency, and Infrastructure. Scores on each pillar were combined to form the overall score used to rank cities and municipalities. The CMCI was designed to encourage local governments to regularly track data and eventually benchmark performance against other cities in the ASEAN to better manage their regions.

The results highlight the importance of being competitive in several factors, especially those which are closely examined by potential investors. It should be noted that the top three cities and municipalities for overall competitiveness also received at least one award in a category.

Economic Dynamism scores were based on data on the size and growth of the local economy as measured by business registrations, capital, revenues, and occupancy permits; capacity to generate employment; cost of living; cost of doing business; financial deepening; productivity; and presence of business and professional organizations. Government Efficiency scores were based on data on transparency scores, economic governance scores, local taxes and revenues, local competition-related awards, business registration efficiency, investment promotion, compliance to national directives, security, health, and education. Infrastructure scores were based on data on existing road network, distance from city/municipality center to major ports, Department of Tourism-accredited accommodations, health infrastructure, education infrastructure, basic utilities, infrastructure investments, ICT connection, ATMs, and public transportation.