Through the years: PH agri growth
The Philippines is often recognized as a country very rich in innate natural resources – water bodies and vast lands. However, in reality, how are we really faring in terms of agricultural growth?
A report by Inquirer collated statistics on growth of ASEAN countries and showed that the Philippines, over the past 50 years, exhibited very slow growth relative to other Asean neighboring countries.
In terms of expansion, Philippine agriculture posted the slowest among Asean countries, in the last 50 years.
The fastest and slowest growth were registered during the Marcos era. Marcos I (1966-80) performed well at 3.7% a year but still behind countries like Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia.
This was also the period driven by the infrastructure development and Asia-wide Green Revolution.
Agriculture productivity growth
In terms of farm productivity, the Philippines still has the poorest growth record.
The Philippines only posted 1.3% a year growth compared to other neighboring countries: Malaysia 2.6% a year and Vietnam at a rate of 1.9% a year.
The report said that the fastest productivity growth occurred during Marcos I, Estrada and Arroyo time periods. Notable declines can be perceived during Marcos II and Ramos periods. The latter suffered a big setback due to the El Niño of 1997-1998.
Compared to ASEAN, the country’s performance during Marcos I period was above average. The other periods were all below par. Outstanding countries then were Malaysia and Vietnam.
The Philippine agriculture productivity growth posted the slowest growth in the Asean, and it is worth noting that it the previous administration were among the lagging performers in terms of growth.
The Duterte administration has reiterated that agriculture is among its key focuses, with Manny Pinol spearheading programs for the development of the Department of Agriculture.