The damage to agriculture from recent typhoons Quinta, Rolly, and Ulysses has reached P10 billion, Agriculture Secretary William Dar said in a Laging Handa briefing on Saturday morning, November 14.
Dar said this P10-billion estimate “does not include the damage from the flooding in Cagayan.” The 3 typhoons left around 150,000 farmers affected, and 275,000 hectares of agricultural land damaged.
On November 13, the Department of Agriculture (DA) estimated Ulysses’ damage cost at almost P1 billion. Earlier reports said Quinta wiped out P2.7 billion worth of agricultural goods, while Rolly’s damage reached P5 billion.
The DA said high-value commodities were affected, like abaca in Catanduanes. Damage to high value crops was estimated at P3.7 billion. Meanwhile, palay damage was pegged at P3 billion.
However, Dar said P32 billion worth of crops were saved due to the agency’s early warning system. Since rice production this year had high yields, Filipinos don’t have to worry about rice shortages.
Aid for farmers
The DA said farmers enrolled in the agency’s registry will be given a P10,000 to P15,000 subsidy. There are also loan programs available for affected farmers and fisherfolk. The farmers may borrow P25,000 – of this amount, P5,000 may be used for emergency purposes, while P20,000 has been allotted for recovery.
Farmers can also avail of amelioration programs with cash and food assistance.
Dar said there is also P6 billion in excess tariffs from 2019 to 2020 which will be given to 1.1 million rice farmers tilling one hectare and below. The agency aims to release the funds to the farmers by December.
Typhoon Quinta, Rolly, and Ulysses brought widespread damage to the country, especially Luzon, from late October to early November this year. – Rappler.com