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Agriculture can save the Philippines from COVID-19 havoc

Agriculture can save the Philippines from COVID-19 havoc

Agriculture is the source of food for the Filipino people and it had been one of the most neglected sectors of our country. Agricultural lands had been converted into subdivisions, malls and many others. It is about time that we focus on that which can aid our live and help us live.

A resounding yes to “Hope in agriculture” (Editorial, 5/24/20). As a country with vast untapped agricultural lands and abundant bodies of water, we need to revive the agriculture sector. And this global pandemic made us realize the unlimited potentials of our fertile lands that have been taken for granted all these years.Republic Act No. 8435 or the Agriculture and Fisheries Modernization Act of 1997 was never passed into law to mean nothing. Where are we on the road map in terms of modernization of the mentioned sector? As an agricultural country, the Philippines could rise from this pandemic if we could put in place, with seriousness, highly needed reforms that encourage the development of an agriculture-driven economy.

The new normal leads to a paradigm shift, a different perspective that we must embrace for this nation to remain afloat. Both the government and the private sector have important roles to play in our journey to achieve food sufficiency and sustainability.

Doing all these is not a walk in the park. The herculean task of rising again from the havoc caused by the COVID-19 pandemic entails a new breed of citizens. But how can we attract people to take agriculture seriously sans infrastructure like irrigation, farm-to-market roads, better transport system, etc.?

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