FILIPINO farmers should have greater subsidy for seedlings from the government to replace crops damaged by typhoons and other calamities, Vice President Jejomar Binay said on Saturday.
“Dapat pagka ganyan na may typhoon sinusubsidize ng gobyerno ang seedlings para may pamalit (Government should subsidize seedling replacement if there are typhoons),” Binay said.
“Ang problema kasi yung mga aspects ng production, for example, yung drying ang daming nawawala. Pag inabot ng ulan, nasisira na yung ibebenta (A lot of produce are wasted, say, in drying. Once the rains hit, the produce that can be sold are spoiled),” Binay added.
The Vice President also recalled that he had helped farmers in Davao secure loans after a typhoon damaged about 17,000 hectares of land planted to bananas.
“Idinulog ko sila kay Secretary Purisima para makakuha ng loan (I have presented the matter to Secretary Purisima so they can apply for loans),” he said.
Binay added that given the Philippines’ natural resources and technical expertise in agricultural production, it should be pushing for rice exportation.
He bemoaned that from being exporters, the country is now forced to import rice because many areas are being used for the wrong purposes.
“Sayang ang dami nating lupain na hindi nagagamit ng tama (What a waste that with so much hectares of land available, these are not correctly used),” he said.
Binay also related how Myanmar’s president had expressed his admiration for the Philippines agricultural expertise in a forum they both attended in India.
He said Myanmar would even invite Filipino technicians because of their knowledge.
“Sayang nga kung bakit nasa sa atin ang technician nasa sa atin ang tubig pero di natin matama ang equation doon (It’s such a pity that we have technicians, we have irrigation but there’s still something wrong in out equation),” he added.