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Since 2019, the Department of Agriculture in Davao Region (DA-11) has disbursed over PHP1.1 billion in funds for its mechanization component as part of the Rice Competitiveness Enhancement Program (RCEP).

During Tuesday’s Kapihan sa Bagong Pilipinas event here, DA-11 Director Macario Gonzaga enumerated the following amounts for the mechanization component in the region: PHP198 million in 2019, PHP205 million in 2020, PHP212 million in 2021, PHP154 million in 2022, PHP236 million in 2023, and PHP146 million in 2024.

“RCEF includes rice farm mechanization, inbred rice seed development, propagation, and promotion. Also included is the expanded rice credit assistance and rice extension services,” he said.

Mechanization intends to help Filipino farmers become globally competitive and improve the farming system and quality of service through the strengthened access and use of appropriate mechanization technologies awarded in the program.

Likewise, it promotes cost-efficient farm machinery, incentivizes manufacturers to improve production and technology, and facilitates access to appropriate machinery through farmer cooperatives and associations.

As to the recipients of the various farm machinery in the Davao Region, Gonzaga said 91 FCAs benefited in 2019; 2020 (86), 2021 (91), 2022 (87), and 67 in 2024.

“On June 6, President Ferdinand Marcos Jr., together with Secretary Francisco Tiu Laurel Jr., led the RCEF machinery distribution during the Presidential Assistance to Farmers and Fisherfolk, and Families at the Davao del Norte Sports Complex in Tagum City,” he said. (PNA)