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BUSINESS NEWS & INFORMATION
Farm-to-market roads for rural development project
Posted by Yel Cobile, IT Admin & Correspondent on August 14, 2014, 8:11 am

(By Sarwell Q. Meniano, Business World)

TACLOBAN CITY -- Farm-to-market road projects worth P559.5 million have been approved for inclusion in the World Bank-funded Philippine Rural Development Program (PRDP).

The PRDP regional advisory board recently approved the following: a 19.4-kilometer (km) road in Liloan, Southern Leyte; a 4-km road in Sogod, Southern Leyte; a 12.6-km road in Basey, Samar; a 4.1-km road in Sta. Rita, Samar; a 2-km road in Maydolong, Eastern Samar; and an 8.36-km road in San Roque, Northern Samar.

These comprise the first batch of sub-projects that will be endorsed this month by the Department of Agriculture (DA) to the World Bank.

“For this year, we are hurrying up the review because we’re taking advantage of the exemption of some requirements for areas affected by last year’s super-typhoon. After that, we will be subject to rigorous requirements,” said DA Regional Executive Director Bernadette F. San Juan, head of the advisory board.

The new $508.25-million rural development program is up for approval by the World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors.

“We have been telling provincial governments that those projects that will not be funded by regular programs can be included in the PRDP,” Ms. San Juan said.

The PRDP, patterned after the Mindanao Rural Development Program, prioritizes rural infrastructure in a bid to increase rural income, diversify livelihood and enterprise options, improve market access, and reduce transportation costs.

It includes more than $62 million for the livelihood recovery of farmers and fisherfolks in central Philippines and repair of 230 kilometers of farm-to-market roads in Yolanda-hit areas.

“It starts with identification of priority commodities and from there, we do value chain analysis. The process sees the gaps so that these commodities will reach end users,” Ms. San Juan added.

Through PRDP, the government expects a 5% increase in annual real farm incomes of household beneficiaries, a 7% increase in value of annual marketed output, and a 20% increase in number of farmers and fishers with improved access to farming department’s services.


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