By Azer Parrocha
MANILA – The Department of Budget and Management (DBM) on Tuesday announced that it has allocated PHP42.8 billion under the 2023 General Appropriations Act (GAA) to implement the administration’s banner food security programs.
DBM Secretary Amenah Pangandaman said the programs include the National Rice Program, National Corn Program, National Livestock Program, National High-Value Crops Development Program, Promotion and Development of Organic Agriculture Program and National Urban and Peri-Urban Agriculture Program.
She said President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr., who heads the DA, emphasized many times that agriculture is a “top priority” of his administration.
“Our 8-Point Socioeconomic agenda puts primacy on food security and agricultural output. As such, we have ensured that important programs which seek to increase farm income and productivity will get a much-needed boost,” Pangandaman said in a news release.
Under the 2023 GAA, the DBM has allocated PHP30.30 billion to implement the National Rice Program (NRP) to boost rice production and uplift the lives of rice farmers.
A total of PHP5.02 billion was allocated to the National Corn Program, which aims to increase the production of quality corn and cassava for human consumption, feeds and industrial uses, as well as empower farmers and increase their income.
The DBM allocated PHP4.50 billion to fund the National Livestock Program, which seeks to accelerate the development of the poultry and livestock sector by improving its production and increasing the stakeholders’ profitability.
A total of PHP1.80 billion was provided for the National High-Value Crops Development Program to help promote the production, processing, marketing and distribution of high-value crops.
The DBM allocated PHP900 million for the Promotion and Development of Organic Agriculture Program, which aims to promote, propagate, further develop and implement the practice of organic agriculture in the country.
A total of PHP318.47 million was allocated to the National Urban and Peri-Urban Agriculture Program, which aims to promote urban and peri-urban agriculture and other emerging agriculture practices.
Marcos earlier said he decided to take on the portfolio as Agriculture Secretary to ensure the stability of food supply and prices in the country.
He has assured that the government is currently implementing programs and offering assistance to the farmers, fishermen and livestock growers to improve their welfare. (PNA)