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PIA Press Release
2009/06/26

Japan-funded Las Navas Bridge enhances economic productivity in Catubig Valley

Tacloban City (June 26) -- President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo and Charge d' Affaires of Japan Hidenobu Sobashima led the unveiling of the project marker and the inauguration of the Las Navas Bridge, a vital component of the Government's socio-economic program for Samar Island, under the "Help for Catubig Agricultural Advancement Project (HCAAP)" on June 16, 2009 in Barangay Rebong, Las Navas, Northern Samar.

The HCAAP is a collaborative project for agricultural and rural development by the Provincial Government of Northern Samar, the National Irrigation Administration (NIA), the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), Department of Health and the municipalities of Catubig and Las Navas.

The Project started in 2002 through the initiative of then Governor Harlin Cast. Abayon and is expected to be fully completed in 2010. Reliable sources informed that the project has the initials of the name of the former governor who was present as one of the guests during the inauguration of the Las Navas Bridge together with his wife, Partylist Congresswoman Daryl Grace Abayon.

The ODA Loan from Japan totalling 5,210 million Yen or approximately 2,565 million Pesos is extended for this project.

The HCAAP is a project designed to promote sustainable agricultural and economic development in the Catubig Valley by raising the income level of farmers, generating new employment opportunities as well as improving the social infrastructure and services of the 71 barangays in Catubig and Las Navas municipalities. The components of the project include irrigation and drainage construction under the National Irrigation Administration (NIA), civil works such as construction of roads between farms and markets and bridges handled by DPWH, schistosomiasis control under Department of Health Region 8, agricultural support services by DA, and institutional development and procurement of equipment by LGU Northern Samar.

The Las Navas Bridge is one of the components of the HCAAP. The bridge, which has a span of 121.35 meters, will particularly enhance the activities of the farmers and fishermen in the area due to better accessibility to major road networks.

The Government of Japan has assisted the efforts of the Philippine Government to attain food security and develop the transportation sector, among others, in line with President Arroyo's 10-point agenda.

Japan is the Philippines ' largest source of ODA and has been a long-time partner in various sectors including transportation and agriculture for more than five decades. (PIA 8) [top]

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