LIKE in past administrations, agriculture remains as one of the major concerns of the crusading and reform-oriented Duterte government, which ends at 12 noon on June 30, 2022.
Various quarters, notably the country’s farmers, concede that addressing the agriculture sector’s concerns plays a stellar role in winning the uphill battle against poverty.
With farmers, fishermen and laborers comprising the bulk of the burgeoning population, millions of Filipinos across the country still live below the so-called poverty line.
Thus, it is only just and proper for concerned government offices and agencies to modernize Philippine agriculture, which remains as a major pillar of the domestic economy.
And let’s commend tough-talking President Duterte and his administration for not showing any sign of backing off from their commitment to raise agricultural productivity and rural incomes.
Raising farm output and rural incomes is seen to avoid a repeat of the supply problems in rice and other major food items in the second half of 2018, said Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez.
This, the government will do through education and the use of new farm technologies, according to Dominguez, a close associate of the Chief Executive from Davao City.
“We will focus on agriculture in the coming years,” he said, adding: “We know that the major reason for the inflation this year has been the logistics problems… in agriculture as well as production problems.”
Even the business community recognizes the importance of the farm sector in sustaining the economy’s high growth rate, said Dominguez.
And in the view of many Filipinos, including the farmers themselves, prioritizing research and development as well as science and technology is a must if we are to modernize Philippine agriculture.