The United States government, through the US Agency for International Development and the National Economic Development Authority, signed a new, five-year bilateral assistance agreement worth more than P7.25 billion ($150 million) to bankroll the program intended to protect the Philippine environment.
USAID Philippines Mission Director Lawrence Hardy II says through this agreement the US and the Philippines deepen their commitment to protect the environment by promoting the sustainable use of natural resources, expanding access to renewable energy and reducing risks from natural disasters.
Under the agreement, the USAID will implement projects to increase access to clean energy and water, improve natural resource management and protect the Philippines’ landscapes, wildlife and fisheries.
These projects support the Philippines’ and United States’ shared goal of preserving the Philippines’ world-renowned natural treasures while improving the lives of Filipinos and ensuring sustainable jobs, Hardy said in a statement released by the US Embassy in Manila.
“This new agreement with NEDA, which includes partnerships with the Departments of Natural Resources, Energy and Agriculture—Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources, marks a new era in our longstanding support to the Philippines,” Hardy said.
“We will work together to address many environmental challenges. Together, we will strengthen government and community efforts in responding to environmental challenges to achieve our shared vision for safer and more resilient Filipino communities. Our assistance will help protect the forests, fisheries, and water and energy resources for millions of Filipinos, increase livelihoods and promote nature as an engine of sustainable growth.”
This bilateral agreement is one of four new, five-year USAID-Philippines development assistance agreements launching in 2020 and 2021, with an anticipated total value of P32.7 billion ($675 million) over the next five years.
The other new agreements include a development assistance agreement with the Department of Health to implement programs aimed at improving underserved Filipinos’ well-being by strengthening health systems and improving the quality of health services, especially in treating tuberculosis and providing access to family planning services and community-based drug dependence treatment.
With the Department of Finance, the USAID aims to accelerate inclusive, market-driven economic growth by advancing policies that increase investment and trade, promoting private-sector-led innovation, and increasing information and communications technology access for the digital economy;
While with the Department of Education, the development assistance is intended to improve early grade reading, expand science and mathematics curricula, increase out-of-school youth access to education, professional training and technical skills development that will lead to new job opportunities, and strengthen education governance.
Over the past 20 years, USAID has provided over P216 billion ($4.5 billion) to advance the Philippines’ development goals.