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PIA Press Release
2007/09/28

Benguet gov pushes for crop production programming

LA TRINIDAD, Benguet (28 September) -- With the aim to increase vegetable production in the province and to help stop vegetable smuggling into the country, the provincial government is pushing for crop production programming.

This was revealed by Governor Nestor Fongwan during the Benguet Forum last week here.

The Governor claimed that profiling of vegetable production not only in Benguet but in other provinces in the Cordillera would be an avenue to substantially provide the needed supply and demand of vegetables in the country.

"Through this strategy, we would prove to the national government that there is no need of vegetable importation as it was written in the World Trade Organization Government Agreement on Tariff and Trade (WTO-GATT), because the region could produce and supply vegetable to consumers", Fongwan said.

He explained under the crop production programming, data of vegetables being planted in one area would be collected and profiled to be able to identify what crop should be planted. This would also encourage sharing scheme among the local government units in Benguet.

Meanwhile, Fongwan reported that a slight decrease on the problems of vegetable truckers was noted since the signing of memorandum of agreement on the truck ban with the Metro Manila Development Authority(MMDA).

He attributed this to the new routes provided and being followed by vegetable truckers coming from Benguet en-route to Divisoria and to the South Luzon expressway.

Fongwan also informed that the provincial government and other non-government organizations have scheduled a meeting on October with Department of Agriculture (DA) Secretary Arthur Yap, Philippine National Police (PNP) Director Razon and MMDA to talk on the possible involvement of the PNP, the Traffic Management Group, (TMG) and the Land Transportation Commission (LTO) in the transport of vegetables from Benguet to the high-end markets.

Involvement of these agencies would probably hasten mobility and transport of vegetable products coming from Benguet going to the areas covered under the food-lane project of the administration, Fongwan said.

We are also planning to sit down with the Bureau of Customs (BOC) for a 100% inspection of imported goods or at random inspections to check on smuggled vegetables, Fongwan added. (PIA-CAR) [top]

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