The AfDB calls on SEARCA for a ten-year plan for the modernization of agriculture

The Asian Development Bank (AfDB) has commissioned the Southeast Asian Regional Center for Graduate Studies and Research in Agriculture (SEARCA) to develop a ten-year plan that will see the Philippines become one of the world’s leading agricultural producers.

SEARCA Director Glenn B. Gregorio told a press conference that the “National Plan for the Organization and Industrialization of Agriculture and Fisheries” will be implemented until 2030.

The press orientation was held concurrently with the launch of the SEARCA Hub for Agriculture and Rural Innovation for the Young Generation (SHARING) cafe.

“We have already submitted our recommendations to the Ministry of Agriculture [DA]”, said Gregorio.

The industrialization plan includes a nine-point track to achieve:

Consolidated production and post-harvest facilities (focused on production systems)

Construction of critical infrastructures spatially integrated in the corridors of industrial activities of agro-fishing

Modernized food terminals and similar facilities linked to transport nodes in urban and peri-urban areas.

Intelligent irrigation and impoundment or water retention systems serving two or more commodities

Other large-scale infrastructure (waste management facilities, fishing ports, ICT (information and communication technology) including broadband connectivity

Intensification of mechanization and adoption of other technologies geared towards commercial scale

Large-scale production and distribution of biologically safe technologies, including bio-packaging

State-of-the-art research and development facilities linked to provincial networks of agriculture and fisheries extension systems

Development of agro-fishing enterprises and business incubation initiatives linked to large investors.

Gregorio said the ten-year plan requires a budget of 5.03 trillion pesos.

“The budget is expected to come from the public sector, 2.5 trillion pesos, while the other 2.5 trillion pesos will come from the private sector.”

SEARCA itself has launched its own programs that seek to attract investment in the knowledge economy that taps into the intellectual resources of the economy to generate wealth.

On the one hand, the SHARING Cafe offers a creative learning experience that can lead the younger generation to contribute to agricultural industrialization.

“The SHARING Café is an interactive component of the SHARING Innovation Spaces, which aims to provide a creative learning experience focused on Agriculture 4.0 in Southeast Asia,” said SEARCA.

“The SHARING Café will be an innovative venue for ‘play to learn’ activities for guests and fun learning modules for K-12 students at beginner, intermediate and advanced levels.”

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