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DBM allots P42.8B for agri priority programs in 2023

The Department of Budget and Management (DBM) said Tuesday the Marcos administration has earmarked nearly P43 billion for the government’s priority food security programs under this year’s budget.

In a statement, the DBM said P42,844,114,000 have been allocated under the 2023 General Appropriations Act (GAA) “to invigorate agriculture and transform it to become one of the main drivers for growth and employment.”

The Budget Department said among the food security programs include the Department of Agriculture’s (DA) 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.

The said programs aim to address food security, poverty alleviation, and sustainable growth through increased farm income and productivity, it said.

“President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. has emphasized many times that agriculture is a top concern priority of his administration. Our Eight 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,” said Budget Secretary Amenah Pangandaman.

In particular, the National Rice Program (NRP) - aimed at boosting rice farming and uplifting the lives of Filipino farmers - has been allocated P30.30 billion under the 2023 national budget, higher from P15.78 billion allocation last year.

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; received a P5.02 billion budget this year, according to the DBM.

Meanwhile, 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, has a P4.50 billion budget.

The DBM said a total of P1.80 billion has been allotted for the National High-Value Crops Development Program, implemented to help promote the production, processing, marketing, and distribution of high-value crops.

The Budget Department said the Promotion and Development of Organic Agriculture Program has a P900 million budget for 2023.

The program aims to promote, propagate, further develop, and implement the practice of Organic Agriculture in the country, according to the DBM.

Lastly, the National Urban and Peri-Urban Agriculture Program has been given P318.47 million under the 2023 GAA.

This program shall promote urban and peri-urban agriculture and other emerging agriculture practices through the Plant, Plant, Plant program, the DBM said. — Ted Cordero/RSJ, GMA Integrated News