Philippine Agriculture

Philippines: Resilient Agriculture Key to Faster Economic Recovery and Poverty Reduction

Agriculture has long been recognized as a key sector of the Philippine economy, providing livelihood to millions of Filipinos and a significant contributor to the country’s gross domestic product (GDP). The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the importance of agriculture as a key factor in the country’s recovery, as it provides not only food security but also jobs and income for millions of people. ์นด์ง€๋…ธ์‚ฌ์ดํŠธ

A thriving agricultural sector is critical to accelerating the country’s recovery and poverty reduction efforts. By investing in agriculture, the government can create more jobs and increase incomes in rural areas, which can help lift people out of poverty.

It can also help alleviate food safety concerns, especially given the disruption to supply chains caused by the pandemic. To achieve a dynamic agricultural sector, government can focus on increasing productivity and efficiency, promoting sustainable practices, and improving farmers’ access to markets and finance. This goal can be achieved through a combination of measures such as support for research and development, infrastructure development and access to credit and other financial services.

The report, produced in support of the World Bank’s support for the Department of Agriculture’s “new thinking” on agricultural development, suggests moving away from focusing on specific crops for resilience to remove competitiveness and sustainability of the rural sector.

In the past, spending was mainly used to support the prices of some crops and commodities, and to subsidize inputs such as fertilisers, planting material and machinery.

Global experience shows that while ensuring the availability of key raw materials remains important, redirecting large public expenditures towards investments in public goods โ€“ including research and development (R&D), infrastructure, innovation systems, market information systems and biosecurity systems โ€“ accelerates poverty reduction and higher productivity growth through the general modernization of agriculture.

The report notes that smallholder farmers struggle to access inputs and outlets for their produce, while buyers such as macroprocesses and wholesalers struggle to obtain the quantity and quality of produce needed for timely delivery. Government support can help overcome these market failures by bringing buyers and producers together and providing support to develop and implement sustainable business plans that benefit both parties.

In situations where farmers need support to help them access markets and improve their livelihoods, or where compensatory measures are needed for farmers affected by trade policies, such as many countries such as Turkey, the European Union and the United States, the report said.

These direct payments have many advantages, such as:

Giving farmers more choice and promoting private sector development in upstream (agricultural inputs and services) and downstream (processing, marketing) markets, thereby facilitating farmers’ access to these markets and opportunities. ์˜จ๋ผ์ธ์นด์ง€๋…ธ์‚ฌ์ดํŠธ

The report indicates that interventions such as agricultural consolidation (including, for example, cooperative agricultural programs), improved advisory services, e-commerce, and investments in agricultural start-ups could further accelerate the modernization of Philippine agriculture.

“These paradigm shifts will be key to seize new market opportunities in national and global markets, while creating jobs, increasing farmers’ incomes, ensuring the country’s food security and addressing the new challenges of climate change,” said Dina Umali-Deininger, Bank’s World Head of Agriculture and Food Practices for East Asia and the Pacific.

World Bank support to the Philippines includes long-term programs to increase agricultural productivity and reduce poverty in rural communities. A recent example is the Philippine Rural Development Project (PRDP), which aims to increase rural income and improve agricultural and fisheries productivity. Several projects are in preparation to increase agricultural productivity, resilience and market access for farmers and fishermen in selected traditional areas of Mindanao and to improve coastal fish stock management in selected coastal communities.

The shift to a more diverse approach to agriculture is a positive development in the Philippines as it can help increase the competitiveness and sustainability of the rural sector.

Focusing on specific crops to increase hardiness can be limiting as it can lead to overproduction of certain crops and reduce the variety of food produced. Diversification can help mitigate risks associated with climate change and other external shocks, as farmers can use a variety of crops if a crop fails.

It can also help increase income and reduce poverty as farmers will have multiple sources of income from different crops. The World Bank’s support for the Department of Agriculture’s โ€œnew thinkingโ€ on agricultural development is a step in the right direction, as it recognizes the importance of a more holistic approach to agricultural development. These include promoting sustainable practices, increasing productivity and efficiency, and improving farmers’ access to markets and finance. ๋ฐ”์นด๋ผ์‚ฌ์ดํŠธ

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