The Duterte administration’s focus on the agriculture sector will push for closer ties between Manila and Jerusalem, Israeli Ambassador to the Philippines Effie Ben Matityau said.
In an interview, Matityau has welcomed the administration’s initiative to further boost the agriculture sector to increase its contribution to the economy as well as to address poverty.
“What is really highlighted here is the importance of agriculture in the economy. There’s an emphasis in agriculture as a significant player in the Philippine economy. That makes us to bring closer to more tangible cooperation,” he said.
The envoy said Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol expressed his interest to adopt here the expertise of Israel in dairy farming and production.
The Philippines is dependent on importing milk, with 99 percent of the commodity in the market are outsourced.
Israel, on the other hand, is a world leader in dairy technology.
Matityau noted the improvement in the dairy industry of China and Vietnam after adopting Israel’s technology.
“We have some very good modalities in neighborhood, starting in China. The Chinese dairy farming is very
modern after the Israeli system; Vietnam, also,” Matityau said.
“So, we are looking at dairy farming and dairy production as area of cooperation with the Philippines,” the Israeli envoy stressed.
Even in the previous administration, the Philippines and Israel is closely looking into partnership in agriculture technology that will help enhance the country’s agriculture sector.
“We are going to see a lot of continuity and expectations are very much the same track,” said Matityau.
“We were in a kind of transition, especially waiting for the new government to take shape,” he added.