PH’s agri deal with PNG a ‘lasting legacy’ of Duterte Admin
Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol said that many years from now, the next generation of Filipinos and the people of the young nation of Papua New Guinea will remember the recently held ceremony in Malacañang Palace where the leaders of both countries witnessed the signing of a Joint Declaration on Agricultural Cooperation (JDAC), which assured both nations of food security.
“I am proud to be part of that historic moment when I signed the JDAC on behalf of my country and Agriculture Minister Benny Allen signed for Papua New Guinea as President Rody Duterte and Prime Minister Peter O’Neill stood as witnesses,” Piñol said.
For Papua New Guinea, the signing of the JDAC will usher in the development of their vast tracts of uninhabited lands for agricultural production ensuring food, income and employment for the people of the 43-year-old Republic.
For the Philippines, a country with rapidly growing population and limited land area, the agricultural cooperation pact ensures the next generation of Filipinos of a source of food, especially rice, for the next 50 years.
The signing of the JDAC marks the start of the partnership between the two countries which will greatly benefit their people.
“The agreement opens the PNG doors to agricultural investors from the Philippines to plant rice and other agricultural crops, including the establishment of huge dairy farms in Papua New Guinea,” Piñol explained.
Under the Agricultural Agreement, Filipino companies will lease PNG state or tribal lands to plant rice or other crops and raise dairy cows to supply the national requirements of Papua New Guinea.
Excess production will be shipped to the Philippines as export products of Papua New Guinea.
The agreement also includes the transfer of technology and training of Papua New Guinea residents, especially in rice farming and the operation of agricultural machinery and equipment.