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Go aims to offer ARBs calamity insurance.

On Thursday, a member disclosed that a bill had been submitted to the Senate to give prompt financial support to ARBs harmed by natural disasters.

According to Senator Christopher Lawrence Go, the bill calls for the government to strengthen the agriculture industry’s resilience and lessen the effects of natural disasters on farmers and rural areas.

According to him, “Filipino farmers who provide the country with food invariably suffer the negative effects of circumstances that are beyond their control, such as natural calamities, the infestation of plant diseases and pests, or even death and injury while farming, which also results in loss of money and resources.”

“The purpose of this bill is to assist agrarian reform beneficiaries in the event of natural calamities to make their losses more bearable, to help them recover from adverse effects, and to mitigate the effects of natural calamities by providing full crop insurance coverage to qualified agrarian reform beneficiaries.”

Go’s Senate Bill (SB) 2118 aims to amend Republic Act 6657, also known as the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Law of 1998, to give ARBs full crop insurance coverage, relieve them of the burden of paying insurance premiums, assist them during disasters, and allow them to recover quickly. This will safeguard the nation’s food security.

All eligible ARBs actively cultivating the land would be covered by the proposed complete insurance coverage for damages that could be compensated.

Natural disasters, plant illnesses, pest infestations, and fatalities or other injuries are all compensable losses under the measure.

The Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) reports and certifies non-crop agricultural assets employed in actual farming, including palay, corn, sugarcane, high-value crops, fish farm crops or stocks, livestock, and non-crop agricultural assets.

The proposed legislation will also call for the Department of Agriculture (DA) and the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (DAR) to incorporate its implementation into their programs right away, with the initial funding coming from funds allocated by the General Appropriations Act to the Philippine Crop Insurance Corp. (PCIC) for the Registry System for Basic Sectors in Agriculture.

Go pointed out that while farmers can purchase crop insurance through the PCIC, they frequently cannot pay the needed insurance payment.

He also submitted SB 2117 in conjunction with this, which aims to increase the PCIC’s services and encourage private industry involvement in farm insurance.

All agricultural products and non-crop agricultural assets, including livestock, aquaculture and fisheries, agroforestry, and forest plantings, must be promptly covered by the PCIC.

Additionally, businesses in the private sector are urged to support farmers by providing reinsurance services to those willing to provide crop insurance.

According to Go, the Philippine Statistics Authority estimates that from 2010 to 2019, extreme natural disasters and occurrences caused PHP463 billion in damage, with agriculture accounting for the greatest portion at 62.7 percent or PHP290 billion.

The senator has long pushed for improved agricultural support systems and infrastructure, citing farmers’ critical role in securing global food security.

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