DA hopeful to get additional P20B budget for next year
The Department of Agriculture (DA) is hoping to get additional budget of P20 billion, on top of its P55 billion budget for next year, in order to provide subsidies for rice farmers as well as intensify the government’s livestock program.
Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol said the idea for the budget increase was brought up by House Speaker Gloria Macapagal Arroyo.
“Speaker Arroyo mentioned during a budget hearing that they are not happy with the P55 billion budget to be given to DA for next year and that they are now working to increase that,” Piñol said in a report in Manila Bulletin.
“Joey Salceda, one of the economic confidants of Speaker Arroyo, told me that they’re expecting additional budget for the DA, especially now that all eyes are on food prices,” he added.
Of the increase, P10 billion will be utilized as a subsidy for farmers once the amended Agricultural Tariffication Act, which will liberalize rice importation by tariffying it, is passed.
The other P10 billion, according to Piñol, will be used by the country to boost our livestock production since there may be a shortfall of meat in 2019 due to the African Swine Fever (ASF) outbreak in China.
China, which was hit by ASF in August, produces more than half of the world’s swine population.