Jica grant seen to boost farm output in Iloilo
More than a thousand farmers are seen to benefit from a Japanese-funded irrigation system in Iloilo that is expected to increase farm productivity.
The P138.55-million Sta. Barbara river irrigation system (RIS), funded by a grant from the Japan International Cooperation Agency (Jica), will provide service to 2,289 hectares of agricultural land in the municipalities of Leganes, Pavia, Sta. Barbara, and Iloilo City.
Around 1,266 farmers and their families are seen to benefit from the project.
In a statement, the National Irrigation Administration (NIA) said the project was seen to improve the cropping intensity of farmers to 200 percent from 162 percent, thus increasing their yield to 110 cavans a hectare during wet season and 80 to 100 cavans a hectare during dry season.
“Filipino farmers, unfornately, remain among the Philippines’ poorest sectors with poverty incidence of as much as 34.3 percent,” said Jica Philippines senior representative Yo Ebisawa.
The Sta. Barbara RIS is one of 11 national irrigation systems that are up for rehabilitation under a P2.64-billion project between Jica and NIA. It aims to restore some 11,500 ha and rehabilitate 24,619 ha of agricultural land.
Others covered by the project include the Malatgao river irrigation system RIS in Palawan, Madongan and Solsona RIS in Ilocos Norte, San Fabian RIS in Pangasinan and Porac-Gumain RIS in Pampanga.—KARL OCAMPO
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