Marcos eyes freeze on CARP payments, condonation of agrarian reform loans

Marcos eyes freeze on CARP payments, condonation of agrarian reform loans
In this 2016 file photo, agrarian reform beneficiaries work on a farm in Leyte.
Philstar.com, file

MANILA, Philippines — President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. is eyeing a year-long moratorium on payments for land distributed under the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program and is asking Congress to amend the law so that agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARBs) will no longer have to pay for land.

Marcos made the announcement during his State of the Nation Address as he talked about the agrarian reform program going beyond the acquisition of land. Under Republic Act 6657, the law on agrarian reform, ARBs need to pay 30 annual payments at 6% interest per year for land awarded to them. 

Marcos said he would issue an executive order to impose a one-year moratorium on agrarian reform payments, which, he said "will give the farmers to channel the resources in developing their farms, maximizing their capacity to produce and propel the growth of our economy." 

He said this is allowed under the Bayanihan to Heal as One Act, which gave the president authority to order a 30-day grace period on loans. This grace period was extended to a 60-day grace period under the Bayanihan to Recover as One Act (Bayanihan II). Both laws have, however, since lapsed.

Amendments to CARP Law

"Congress must also pass a law that will emancipate agrarian reform beneficiaries from the agrarian reform debt burden," Marcos Jr. also said, as he called for amendments to Section 26 of the CARP Law.

Section 26 deals with payments and interest rates for CARP land and holds that the Land Bank of the Philippines can move to recover CARP land if ARBs fail to pay amortization for three consecutive years.

"Agrarian Reform Beneficiaries who are still to receive their awarded land through the CARP shall receive it without any obligation for amortization," the president said as he talked about the condonation of agrarian reform loans.

He added that implementation of CARP and distribution of remaining agrarian reform land would be in view of providing land to "special areas of concern" identified by Section 40 of the CARP Law, including landless war veterans and their surviving spouses and children, retired Armed Forces of the Philippines personnel and to "graduates of agricultural schools who are landless."

"The call of the times is for the infusion of new blood into agriculture," the president, who earlier in his speech talked about increasing support for the agricultural sector, said.

He said that the Department of Agriculture would aim for increased production in the next planting season by giving financial and technical assistance to farms.

He said that aside from loans, the government will bring in farming inputs like fertilizers, pesticides, seeds for distribution.

vuukle comment



SONA 2022


  • Latest
  • Trending
Are you sure you want to log out?

Philstar.com is one of the most vibrant, opinionated, discerning communities of readers on cyberspace. With your meaningful insights, help shape the stories that can shape the country. Sign up now!

Get Updated:

Signup for the News Round now

or sign in with