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Alcala gets SEARCA report on projects funded by DA

(The Philippine Star) - August 11, 2013 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - Agriculture Secretary Proceso J. Alcala recently  expressed appreciation for the work of the Southeast Asian Regional Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture (SEARCA) in implementing 25 projects funded by government.

SEARCA director Dr. Gil C. Saguiguit Jr. briefed Alcala on the 25 development projects that SEARCA had implemented with  funding support from the Bureau of Agricultural Research (BAR), Agricultural Credit and Policy Center (ACPC), National Agriculture and Fishery Council (NAFC), Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice) and the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR).

The briefing was conducted as Alcala and 33 other top officials and members of the Management Committee of the Department of Agriculture (DA) attended a one-day leadership workshop held at the SEARCA headquarters in Los Banos, Laguna last July 30.

All in all, Saguiguit said, the attached DA agencies spent P176 million for the 25  projects.

 Among the services rendered by SEARCA were research and development (R&D) covering agricultural crops, livestock, fisheries, biotechnology, food security and climate change adaptation as well as graduate scholarship management.

SEARCA also helped the DA in its knowledge management capacity building through in-country and overseas training programs.

The research institution also worked on project development and management including policy studies and strategic planning, institutional strengthening, market studies and impact evaluation.

Among the completed projects was “The Nature, Sources and Causes of Productivity Growth in Philippine Agriculture (PGPA).” 

The project, implemented with BAR and PhilRice, examined the different scenarios for productivity growth which was deemed essential to formulate an outlook on the overall state of Philippine agriculture. 

Saguiguit  told Alcala that the results of the projects would soon be released through monographs covering the following topics: scenarios and options, total factor productivity, grains, R&D and extension, traditional export crops, infrastructure, high-value export crops, natural capital, livestock and poultry, human capital, aquaculture, and social capital.

SEARCA also completed the assessment of the Gulayan ng Masa Program of the DA.

The project aimed to quantify the impact of the Gulayan ng Masa Program in terms of alleviating hunger and malnutrition in the country, as well as draw lessons that could serve as guides for policymakers and decision-makers in formulating and implementing similar targeted programs.

Another project was strengthening the National Technology Commercialization Program (NTCP) under BAR, which is intended to accelerate the commercialization of technologies for increased productivity and profitability of stakeholders and key players.

NTCP aims to transform the agriculture and fisheries sectors from being resource-based to being technology-based.

Saguiguit also told Alcala about the success of the “Capacity Development Program on Knowledge Management,” which was targeted mainly to strengthen national capacities of agricultural and fisheries information stakeholders on knowledge management with emphasis on knowledge products development and knowledge sharing technologies.

Ongoing DA-funded projects being implemented by SEARCA include a capacity development program for DA executives and professional staff; strengthening of project development and management for Agri-Pinoy; assessment of smuggling of selected agricultural commodities; improving agricultural insurance to enhance resilience against climate change; and responding to climate change through R&D in agriculture.

All of these are within the purview of SEARCA’s mandate which is to build capacities of institutions working in agricultural and rural development in Southeast Asia.

AGRICULTURAL AGRICULTURAL CREDIT AND POLICY CENTER AGRICULTURE AGRICULTURE SECRETARY PROCESO J ALCALA BUREAU OF AGRICULTURAL RESEARCH BUREAU OF FISHERIES AND AQUATIC RESOURCES DEVELOPMENT MASA PROGRAM SAGUIGUIT SEARCA
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