The Department of Agriculture (DA) is proposing a P900-million Japanese Loan through the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) for the modernization of Philippine agriculture sector, Philippine Agricultural Modernization Program. The proposed loan will fund the full mechanization of farming in a first batch of 10,000 hectares of selected rice farms in the country.
The Department of Agriculture sees this as boost to the Duterte Administration’s goal of producing and making available affordable food to Filipinos.
Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol said that under the Philippine Agricultural Modernization Program, the DA proposes to provide farmers in 10 model sites nationwide with farm equipment that include grains dryer and post-harvest facilities, technical support and institutional development.
Each of the model sites would have clusters of rice farms totalling 1,000-hectares per area, Piñol said. In each of these clusters, the DA will coordinate with established cooperatives to handle the management of the farm equipment and the lease of the equipment to local farmers, he added.
The Department of Agriculture is looking to sign the Memorandum of Understanding with JICA for the farm mechanization program loan during the expected visit of Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to Philippines this month.
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