Masaganang Agrikultura, Maunlad na Ekonomiya!

DA welcomes World Bank’s report focusing on food security challenges and opportunities

Author: DA-AFID | 9 December 2022

Department of Agriculture (DA) Senior Undersecretary Domingo Panganiban said the World Bank’s Philippines Economic Update (PEU) December 2022 Edition is extra special for the agriculture sector as it focuses on public expenditure review for agriculture.

“We welcome its recommendations in ramping up efficiency and effectiveness of government spending in the sector,” Undersecretary Panganiban said during the PEU launch and forum, where he served as keynote speaker, on December 7, 2022.

He added that the report aligns well with the directions set out by the President and DA Secretary to improve fiscal management for the agriculture sector as one of many strategies in his development agenda.

“It is hoped that this will contribute to our efforts on rebuilding and restructuring the food value chains to address the root cause of the issues that have long hampered our sector’s growth,” he said.

The latest PEU also considers financial and functional devolution resulting from the Mandanas ruling and the challenges and policies needed to achieve agriculture productivity and food security in the medium and long term.

“The efficient use of public funds for public investments will help address the structural constraints of the sector, and deliver better extension services, stronger value chain system, and improved business climate for agri-food system,” the PEU states.

Its policy recommendations include focusing on diversification, investing in extension services, scaling up climate smart agriculture policies and programs, and improving budget priority and process, among others.

Recognizing the challenge to build back better and be more resilient, Undersecretary Panganiban said that the DA continues to innovate and work double time.

He discussed the DA’s National Agriculture and Fisheries Modernization Plan (NAFMIP), which serves as the directional plan to transform the country’s food systems. Its policy directions consider the shift from a single-commodity to multi-commodity planning approach, promotion of clustering and consolidation for economies of scale, enhancing the value chain, and climate resiliency.

“The DA will continue to embark in transforming and modernizing its ways and means in order to better serve the agriculture and fishery sector and contribute to the grand goal of a food-secured nation by empowering farmers and fishers to increase their productivity and profitability,” Undersecretary Panganiban committed.

The PEU, a biannual publication of the World Bank, summarizes key economic and social developments, important policy changes, and the evolution of external conditions. It also covers issues from macroeconomic management and financial-market dynamics to the complex challenges of poverty reduction and social development. ### (Gumamela Celes Bejarin, DA-AFID)

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