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Monday, December 4, 2023

DAR chief cites gains in first 100 days in office

Thousands of agrarian reform beneficiaries (ARBs) all over the country benefited from the various support services interventions provided by the Department of Agrarian Reform (DAR) during the first 100 days under the leadership of Secretary Conrado Estrella III.

In a report submitted to President Ferdinand Marcos, Jr. in Malacañang, Estrella cited training, organizational building, enterprise development, market linkage, access to credit, and provision of farm inputs, machinery, and equipment, as among the various support services provided by the DAR to the ARBs.

“Land redistribution should be complemented with support services and development initiatives to sustain the gains of the program. Our systematic delivery of support services would help harness the potentials of our ARBs and optimize the productivity of the lands they received from the government,” he said.

Estrella noted that from July to September 2022, the DAR trained 171,122 ARBs, which is 125.33 percent of its 136,533 target ARBs for the same period.

The training includes organizational development, livelihood development, farm productivity enhancement technologies, and marketing strategies to help them become more proficient farmers and to contribute to strengthening the country’s agricultural sector.

During the same period, the DAR also provided access to credits and microfinance services to 55,626 ARBs, which is 117.64% of the agency’s 47,286 target ARBs. These services would help them boost their farm production and livelihood activities.

A total of 1,070 ARB organizations were provided with various technical assistance related to organizational development, business development services, and provision of farm machinery and facilities, among others.

Estrella said one of the success metrics of the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP) is the transformation of agrarian reform communities into self-reliant communities that could help propel agro-industrialization.

Estrella added that the department expects that the interventions provided would have an immediate impact on the ARBs’ land productivity, increase their household incomes and promote their well-being.

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