MANILA, Philippines – The World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors approved last March 19 an additional $10-million loan to finance the completion of critical infrastructure components of the Second Agrarian Reform Communities Development Project (ARCDP2) which was launched in 2003.
The additional funds will help complete the construction and rehabilitation of communal irrigation systems (CIS) being implemented by the National Irrigation Administration (NIA) covering 4,153 hectares in the provinces of Ilocos Norte, Isabela, Bataan, Zambales, Quezon, Mindoro Occidental, Albay, Zamboanga del Norte, and Misamis Occidental.
The projects are expected to benefit 3,880 farmers by increasing yields and crop intensity by an average 70 percent.
Bert Hofman, World Bank Country director, said that additional financing for communal irrigation facilities would raise farmers’ incomes and help them escape poverty.
“Irrigation has always been an important part of the government’s strategy to achieve sustainable economic growth and food security. The Bank supports this effort through ARCDP2 because it is consistent with our mandate of helping the government alleviate poverty and achieve inclusive growth,” Hofman said.
The World Bank and the Philippine government signed on Jan. 22, 2003, a $50-million loan for the second phase of ARCDP. The loan would help reduce rural poverty and enhance the quality of life of agrarian reform beneficiaries, building on the success and lessons learned from the phase 1.
Implemented by the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR), the project aims to increase household incomes of agrarian reform beneficiaries in about 80 agrarian reform communities throughout the country by providing rural infrastructure and support services to increase farm productivity. –Marianne V. Go, Philippine Star