• Canada to fund P400M devt program for farmers

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    The Canadian government on Thursday said it will provide 10 million Canadian dollars (P400 million) in funding support for a project that will enhance the business management and financial literacy skills of Filipino farmers.

    The Agribusiness Development project, which will be implemented by the International Finance Corporation (IFC) over a five-year period, will deliver financial products and services that meet farmers’ needs, facilitate partnerships between the government and the private sector, and design policies, regulations and procedures that will improve the investment climate.

    “It is essential to help small farmers grow their businesses and generate profits so that they become important engines of economic growth in their communities,” Canada Minister of International Trade Ed Fast said before the joint meeting of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce in the Philippines, Makati Business Club (MBC), and Management Association of the Philippines (MAP) on July 22.

    “In order to raise people out of poverty and put them on the road to prosperity, we must leverage private sector involvement, and foster good governance. The private sector is the driving force behind economic growth and is essential to achieving meaningful development outcomes,” Minister Fast said.

    “Canada is proud to help advance the economic opportunities of women and men in the Philippines,” he added.

    “The project will help improve the performance of smallholder farmers and other small and medium-sized enterprises, in partnership with large ‘lead firm’ agribusinesses to create or improve supply chain models that can sustainably meet market and customer requirements,” the Canadian Embassy explained in a statement.

    The work will also include assistance to farmers to enhance their business management skills and financial literacy, and access better farming practices and markets for their products.

    Last month, Canada announced it had designated the Philippines a “country of focus” for Canada’s international development efforts, part of the Canadian government’s expansion of its focus list from 20 to 25 countries, based on the beneficiary country’s needs, capacity to benefit from development assistance, and alignment with Canadian foreign policy priorities.

    Canada is also a significant contributor of aid in the aftermath of Typhoon Glenda as well, having pledged P10 million in urgent humanitarian assistance for those affected by the calamity.

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