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The Office of the Provincial Agriculture (OPA) said it had extended some P4.75 million in non-interest agricultural assistance loans to around 200 Palawan farmers throughout last year.

Dubbed as “Provision of Input to Rice Farmers Through Loan,” the program aims to increase local farmers’ rice production and therefore increase their income.

OPA chief Dr. Romeo Cabungcal said in an interview Monday that the program works closely with farmers’ groups and cooperatives to increase their income.

“[Para] ma-increase and kanilang production and at the same time ma-reduce din ang production cost. Katulad ng how we assess ‘yong mga farmers’ organizations, kasi ang assumption ay kapag nag-increase ang production, mag-iincrease ang income ng farmers,” Cabungcal said

“Ang entry point ng lahat ng mga intervention is ‘yong mga rural organization, ‘yong mga farmer association, fisherfolk associations and cooperatives. We want to ensure that they are empowered sa kanilang mga ginagawa in the area so they can help increase productivity to also increase their income,” he added.

A presser by the Public Information Office (PIO) dated February 1 stated that a total of 210 farmers in Palawan received the loans and attended training programs in 2020. 47 of the farmers are from Sofronio Española, 60 from Quezon, 58 from Roxas, 36 from Aborlan, two from Narra, and seven from Brooke’s Point.

Cabungcal added that the OPA’s focuses for 2021 include promoting home gardening, increasing Palawan’s corn and rice productivity, and develop local aquaculture production.

“Naka-focus pa rin [kami] sa rice and corn productivity then we have yung vegetable production in every household. Gusto namin i-continue ’yon. Based on our learning during the implementation, the integrated community food production program. Then we want also to look into fishery production, continuation of technical assistance and development program at i-intensify ang aquaculture production,” he said.




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is a senior reporter for Palawan News who covers politics, education, environment, tourism, and human interest stories. She loves watching Netflix, reading literary fiction, and listens to serial fiction podcasts. Her favorite color is blue.