Poe-Escudero to increase agri-budget fourfold, will stop agri-smuggling

March 28, 2016 at 9:22 am Leave a comment


 
By Brando Cortez
Gobyernong may Puso vice presidential candidate Chiz Escudero said he and leading presidential candidate Grace Poe will increase government spending on agriculuture fourfold and stop smuggling.

© 2016 Willie Lomibao Images

© 2016 Willie Lomibao Images

The government will allocate P300 billion for agriculture from its present funding of P80 billion.
 
Escudero said that 60% of those below the poverty line are in the agricultural sector. Hence, the need to increase the budget for agriculture to build more farm-to-market roads and irrigation.
“Bakit naiiwan ang mahihirap? Dahil hindi gumagastos ng sapat ang gobyerno sa agrikultura. Government’s busy allocating on the Php80-B for Agriculture. Gusto namin ni Senator Grace 10% ng National Budget o Php300-B sa agriculture; magsasaka man o mangingisda. Kabilang sa gagastusan namin farm-to-market road at irrigation,” he said
“Php300-B para sa agrikultura para libre ang irigasyon, magdagdag ng isang daang libong ektarya kada taon, gumastos sa farm-to-market road para matapos ‘yung 20,000 kilometers sa loob ng apat na taon, he added.
Escudero said this year, the government allotted P391 billion for highways and bridges but only P7 billion for farm-to-market roads. At a spending rate of P7 billion per year, it will take 40 years to pave 28,000 kilometers of farm-to-market roads.
Ang farm-to-market road ‘pag nakongkreto mo tataas ng pito hanggang walong porsyento ang kita ng magsasaka at mangingisda,” he said.
Escudero said that farmers should be freed from paying irrigation fees.
“Tanong uli, bakit ‘pag nagpapagawa ng highway ang gobyerno, widening man o bagong kalye, hindi naman nagbabayad ‘yung mayamang may kotse? Pero bakit kapag gagawan ng irrigation canal ang gobyerno magbabayad ‘yung mga magsasaka sa kada litro ng tubig na dadaan doon? Tanong ko naman, pondo ng gobyerno ‘yon. Parehong galing sa buwis. Parehong project ng gobyerno ‘yon. Bakit kung sino pa ‘yung mahirap ‘yon pa ‘yung pinagbabayad? Kung sino pa ‘yung mayaman ‘yon pa ‘yung libre?
Escudero said that aside from calamities and low support for agriculture, the flourishing of smuggling of agricultural products is one of the greater enemies of the farmes.
Hindi lang ang mga kalamidad at kawalan ng suporta mula sa pamahalaan ang matinding kalaban ng ating mga magsasaka kung hindi rin ang walang humpay na smuggling ng mga produktong agrikultura galing sa ibang bansa tulad ng bawang, sibuyas at asukal,” he said.
Gawing universal coverage ang crop insurance para ‘pag may tumamang kalamidad, hindi dadapa o madadapa ang magsasaka at tayo lang ang mayabang na hindi nagbibigay ng subsidies sa magsasaka at mangingisda natin. But I think that’s also the reason why all over the world, dalawampung bansa na lamang ang mahirap ang magsasaka at mangingisda. In other countries of the world, mayaman ang magsasaka, mayaman ang mangingisda. Dito lang, isa sa dalawampung bansa ang Pilipinas sa mundo na mahirap ang magsasaka, mahirap ang mangingisda.

 

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