Masaganang Agrikultura, Maunlad na Ekonomiya!

DA chief highlights Philippine agriculture priorities at FAO meeting

Author: DA-AFID | 26 February 2024

The Philippines will make agriculture a creator of higher-paying jobs, competitive products and a viable investment alternatives. 

This was the gist of the Philippine country statement delivered by Agriculture Secretary Francisco P. Tiu Laurel, Jr. during a  regional gathering of the United Nation’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).  

The agri chief elaborated on President Ferdinand Marcos Jr.’s vision for a modernized agriculture sector during the High-Level Ministerial Session of the 37th FAO Regional Conference for Asia and the Pacific in Colombo, Sri Lanka on February 20, 2024.

The APRC is the highest regional governing body of FAO and provides guidance to the UN organization. The Philippines has been a member of the FAO since it was established in 1945.

To modernize the agriculture sector, Sec. Tiu Laurel said the DA plans to increase investments in science-based technologies and innovations; develop a blue economy to protect, leverage and optimize the country’s coastal and marine resources, and enhance the country’s capacity to collect, use and analyze agricultural data that would foster food security, poverty alleviation, and sustainable development.

“We need to urgently improve productivity, resilience, inclusivity, and sustainability of our agri-food systems to make our farmers and fisherfolk more prosperous and our people more food secure,” Sec. Tiu Laurel said.

The Philippines’ agriculture secretary also sought greater regional cooperation in addressing the impact of climate change on our agri-food systems; adopting a “One Health” approach against threats to human, animal, plant, and environmental health and the associated food security and nutrition risks;  ensuring open, predictable, and fair trade of agri-food inputs and products; and empowering family farmers, women, and youth as change agents in the transition to sustainable and resilient agriculture.

“The Philippines recognizes that achieving sustainable food and nutrition security requires a whole-of-society approach with government utilizing multi-sectoral and multi-level platforms. We stand ready to do our part and work with all stakeholders,” Sec. Tiu Laurel said.

The FAO Regional Conference for Asia and the Pacific is a forum held every two years where high-level officials, mainly Ministers of Agriculture from FAO member states in the region, gather to discuss challenges related to food and agriculture, with the goal of promoting regional coherence. ### (photo courtesy of @FAOPhilippines)

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