Oliver Bugarin 3 0 0 4 min to read

The House leader favors increasing the DA budget in 2023.

Zaldy Co, chairman of the House Committee on Appropriations, supported the Department of Agriculture’s request for a 40 percent budget increase on Monday, saying that it will assist expand food supplies and drive down costs.

Co referred to the enormous percentage increase in the budget for the agriculture sector from PHP117.29 billion in 2022 to PHP163.75 billion in 2023 as “unprecedented” during the budget hearing.

According to President Marcos’ direction, the local food supply should grow, which will lead to lower food costs due to the law of supply and demand, Co added. “This budget increase should secure the country’s food security.”

Co said that the House concurs with the president’s instruction to boost agriculture in order to achieve food security and sufficiency.

“This institution is working with the President to enhance the agricultural economy’s foundations in order to achieve even greater national food security. Our goal is for the Filipino countryside to be richer, climatically resilient, and powerful, ” he stated.

Co also mentioned that agriculture is a key factor in economic growth and job creation, referencing Marcos.

“The road ahead is challenging but manageable. The agriculture sector must continue to be at the vanguard of our collaborative endeavor to create more jobs, decrease poverty, and enhance the lives of every Filipino, especially farmers and fishers, as the country enters a new chapter of socio-economic development, he added.

According to Deputy Speaker Ralph Recto, the budget increase should be supported since “a country should not starve its farming sector of funding to battle hunger.”

You could argue that the financial shortage is finally coming to an end, according to Recto.

According to Recto, eight significant agricultural organizations that are regarded as government enterprises will also get significant increases in financial subsidies from the federal government.

Subsidies to the National Food Authority, the Sugar Regulatory Administration, the National Irrigation Administration, the Philippine Rice Research Institute, the Philippine Fisheries Development Authority, the National Tobacco Administration, the Philippine Coconut Authority, and the National Dairy Authority will increase from PHP46.2 billion this year to PHP62 billion, a 33 percent increase.

The NFA would experience the highest increase of the eight, increasing by 71 percent from PHP7 billion to PHP12 billion. As a result, NFA can increase its buffer stock capacity from nine to fifteen days.

The next recipient of financial support is SRA, which will receive PHP1 billion, a 41 percent increase from PHP712.2 million this year.

The Office of the Secretary (OSEC) budget at the so-called “DA Proper” will increase by 48 percent, or PHP29 billion, from PHP61 billion to PHP90.2 billion.

The OSEC will manage the National Rice Program, and its budget will increase from PHP15.8 billion in 2022 to PHP30.5 billion in 2023.

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