Marcos Jr. says gov’t ramping up efforts to boost fisheries sector
MANILA, Philippines — The government is formulating a plan to improve the country’s fisheries sector as President Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. ordered different agencies to develop the needed infrastructure and facilities.
According to the Presidential Communications Office (PCO) on Tuesday, Marcos had a briefing with officials of the Department of Agriculture (DA), which he also leads, along with other concerned agencies to address the crisis in fishery production after tackling rice and livestock supply.
“So we have started to formulate a plan to improve the fishing grounds for our aquaculture that is in land, in our rivers, and the freshwater although we have a good supply of tilapia and bangus. Although tinitingnan kasi ang galunggong pero ang katotohanan marami pa tayong ibang production (Although we are looking at galunggong, we have production elsewhere),” the President said, as quoted by the PCO.
“Now, kulang pa rin ang production natin sa fisheries kaya’t kailangan natin tingnan pati ‘yung tinatawag na mariculture ‘yung mga isda na nasa dagat. (Our production is still lacking so we need to look mariculture).So that is basically what we were discussing and putting together also we were already starting to give the tasking to the different agencies like DTI, like DBP, LandBank, the CDA or the Cooperative Development Authority,” he added.
Marcos said he instructed different agencies on the steps in crafting the plan for agriculture, focusing mainly on the fishery sector in a bid to improve fish stock production.
“Now the benefit of that is that mabilis ang cycle sa isda. But we have to put the infrastructure in place. We have to put the facilities in place. So iyon ang una naming gagawin para to increase ang ating production ng isda (So that’s the first thing we will do to increase production of fish),” he said.
The PCO said DA interventions aimed at improving the production of basic agricultural commodities include the rehabilitation and modernization of fish port complexes, as well as the implementation of the agricultural and fishery machinery and equipment service centers.
Based on the 2023 Demand and Supply Outlook for Basic Commodities, the country’s 3.55 million metric ton fish demand outpaces supply at 2.97 million metric tons.
It has 2.88 million metric tons projected for local production with imports at 0.04 million metric tons, the PCO said.