PGMA evaluates agribusiness in Mindanao
By Mai Gevera
Davao City (17 February) -- After the Cyber Corridor Legacy Tour, President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo revisits some parts of Mindanao today to evaluate ongoing projects under the Mindanao Agribusiness Super Region.
The Mindanao Super Region is composed of Regions IX, X except Camiguin, XI, XII, Caraga (except Siargao), and the Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao. PGMA chose this area for agribusiness activities because of its fertile lands, river systems, typhoon-free climate, and an agribusiness mindset of the people.
Deputy Presidential Spokesperson Ricardo Saludo, in his interaction with the Davao media last Monday (February 15), bared some of the accomplishments under the Mindanao.
Low-cost fertilizers were provided to farmers through 322 units of composting facilities in the whole of Mindanao. These composting facilities helped reduce the dependence of farmers on expensive inorganic fertilizers and promote organic farming in the Super Region.
On irrigation, about 43,224 hectares of farmlands were provided irrigation while 315,756 hectares were restored/rehabilitated spurring agricultural productivity through intensive farming and multi-cropping, and transforming seasonal farming jobs to year-long jobs.
Saludo also reported that About P8.96 billion was spent from 2001 to 2009 to complete the construction and rehabilitation of 4,427.62 km. of Farm-to-Market Roads (FMRs), which improved the delivery of agricultural products as the accessibility of farms was enhanced and hauling costs reduced.
"Almost 1,000 kilometers of the national figures are built and constructed in Region XI", he said.
From 2008 to 2009, a total of P4.77 billion was released to 154,536 farmer-beneficiaries through the Land Bank and Agro-Industry Modernization Credit and Financing Program (AMCFP) to encourage and develop the capacity of farmers to invest more in agribusiness.
He said that the government has significantly boosted agribusiness in Mindanao through the FIELDS Program that cultivate resources for production and develop the agribusiness supply chain backed with necessary research and development. (PIA XI) [top]