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Villar files bill to help farmers cope with natural calamities




Senator Cynthia Villar is again seeking the approval of a bill that would help small farmers recover from natural calamities.

Villar recently filed Senate Bill 140 or the proposed “Free Index-Based Agriculture Insurance Act” which seeks to create an enabling policy, regulatory, and funding support  for a more effective crop insurance program.

“With an average of 20 typhoons a year entering the country and two to four typhoons forecast to enter the country this July alone, there is an urgent need to further increase the access by our rice, corn and coconut farmers to safety nets against the effects of climate change and extreme weather risks,” Villar said in pushing anew the measure, which she filed during the 17th Congress in 2018.

She also noted that the Philippine Crop Insurance Corporation (PCIC) cannot cover all the farmers in need of their services.

With her bill, Villar said she aims to make farmers resilient despite calamities and be able to “get back within one week to the field to produce, support the country’s food security and not fall into the poverty trap.”

The bill would create a free index-based crop insurance program adopting the weather index-based crop insurance, which she said was very popular mode providing risk transfer on the part of millions of farmers in Asia, Africa and Latin America. (Vanne Terrazola)