ASEAN KEY DESTINATIONS
Philippines releases fund for rice growing
Secretary Florencio Abad said Thursday that the P3.430 billion for the National Rice Program of the Department of Agriculture (DA) is aimed at increasing farmers’ yield.
“This is in line with the Aquino administration’s Social Contract commitment to reduce poverty by making the country self-sufficient in rice come 2013,” Abad said.
“ Through this program, the government makes sure that facilities, technologies and other interventions are in place to help us achieve this target,” he said.
Under the National Rice Program, farmers are provided with quality seeds, irrigation, credit and marketing assistance to improve farm productivity and profitability. The budget for the program is set at P5.217 billion for this year.
The DA expects to produce 17.45 million metric tons (MT) of palay this year, and plans to increase the output by 10 percent to 19.2 million MT in 2012, and by another 10 percent to 21.11 million MT in 2013.
In a technical budget hearing, DA Secretary Proceso Alcala said the agency is aiming for 91.9 percent rice self-sufficiency by 2012 from 84.4 percent this year.
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