SEARCA and IFPRI partner with DA and DTI in the Agricultural Transformation and Market Integration Project
LOS BAÑOS, LAGUNA. The Southeast Asian Regional Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture (SEARCA) and the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), together with the Department of Agriculture (DA) and the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), co-organize the fifth and final National Inception Workshop under the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD)-funded project, Agricultural Transformation and Market Integration in the ASEAN Region: Responding to Food Security and Inclusiveness Concerns. The inception workshop is being held at SEARCA, Los Baños, Laguna on 10 to 11 August 2017.
The national inception workshop serves as a venue for participants to (1) gain good understanding of structural transformation and market integration as these relate to agricultural growth and food security in the Philippines; (2) level-off on what the project hopes to achieve and on the roles of various stakeholders; (3) identify promising commodities for regional and global value chains; and (4) develop a Country Action Plan towards the achievement of the Programme's outcome, which is enhanced capacity of ASEAN Member States (AMS) to identify and design national strategies, policies, programs, and national agrifood value chain investment initiatives that benefit small-scale rural producers (SSRPs).
The SEARCA Director, Dr. Gil C. Saguiguit, Jr. welcomed guests and participants of the workshop, while Undersecretary Evelyn G. Laviña of the DA delivered a message on behalf of Secretary Emmanuel F. Piñol, during the Opening Program. Dr. Mercedita A. Sombilla, Assistant Secretary for Agriculture, Natural Resources and Environment of the National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA), presented the national perspective on Philippine agriculture, and the Philippine Development Plan 2017-2022 as these relate to agricultural transformation and market integration in the country.
Other resource persons and panelists are from IFPRI, the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), Philippine Rural Development Program (PRDP) under the Department of Agriculture (DA), Philippine Council for Agriculture and Fisheries (PCAF), NEXUS Agribusiness Solutions, Asian Farmers Association (AFA), and Asian Partnership for Development of Human Resources in Rural Asia (AsiaDHRRA). Other officials from the DA, DTI, IFPRI, and SEARCA, as well as representatives from the academe, the private sector, and farmers' organizations are participating in the said workshop. (Bernice Anne C. Darvin)