P1.5 billion released for ASF-struck hog raisers — DA
MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Agriculture has released some P1.5 billion in assistance for hog farmers as the African Swine Fever (ASF) continues to afflict the hog industry, the agriculture chief said Wednesday.
DA secretary William Dar said that they have since released P1.5 billion from the quick response fund to compensate hog raisers with P5,000 each as they wait for the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) to release P500 million more to assist more hog raisers.
“Mayroon na tayong nabayaran worth P1.5 billion pesos, at mayroon pa kaming babayaran na almost half a billion pesos, yun po ay utang pa natin and we are requesting for DBM to release the funds,” he said in an ANC interview.
(We have paid P1.5 billion pesos, and we still have half a billion pesos to pay, and we are requesting for DBM to release the funds.)
He added that DA has allotted P1.2 billion to jumpstart the repopulation of pigs while Landbank has committed P30 billion and DBP 12 billion, for commercial hog raisers with due interest.
Dar stressed that the repopulation of pigs — the long-term solution to address shortage — would be felt within this year if done right, while noting the increase of import quotas are only temporary solutions.
“Repopulation, if started properly, in six months meron ka nang aanihin (there is already a yield),” he explained. “The life cycle would have to be enhanced so in due time, we are going to have some substitution of the supply being augmented from abroad.”
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