“All sectors should support reforms that promote our Philippine food security, let us cooperate to help ensure stable food prices as we work for start of Philippine economic recovery this year,” said Federation of Filipino Chinese Chambers of Commerce & Industry, Inc. (FFCCCII) President Dr. Henry Lim Bon Liong.
Dr. Lim added: “On pork and chicken prices, we support the positive efforts like Agriculture Secretary William Dar announcing Department of Agriculture shall offer loans to market vendors and financial aid to hog transporters severely affected by the two-month price cap on pork and chicken products in Metro Manila. We also commend the government strategy of allocating P27 billion worth of assistance for commercial hog raisers to help them repopulate in their area. The temporary pork supply shortfall is not just here in the Philippines, it is a regional challenge since 2018, so government reforms seeking to boost hog production are very positive steps.”
FFCCCII is an umbrella federation of over 170 Filipino Chinese chambers from Aparri to Tawi Tawi, plus diverse trade and industry associations., and Dr. Lim said he is hopeful of 7.5% Philippine economic growth this year due to improving domestic and global conditions. Among these positive factors include the coming of various anti-pandemic vaccines, gradual reopening of the Philippine economy while still upholding health safeguards, the country’s excellent macroeconomic and fiscal fundamentals, the end of Trump’s chaotic trade war pitting the world’s two biggest economies USA and China with the recent Chinese New Year phone call by Pres. Biden to Pres. Xi.
Dr. Lim also said: “We support policies and reforms by government to increase production of our hogs, chickens and other foods, for the sake of continued stability of supplies and prices, such as financial and technical assistance to producers and farmers, modernization of rural infrastructures under the ‘Build, Build, Build’ program. Congratulations to DA, Secretary William Dar and our Filipino farmers that despite the global crisis and economic slowdown last year 2020, Philippine agriculture still registered positive growth last year and will have still a good year this 2021. One reason for this success is Sec. Dar’s ‘Plant, Plant, Plant’ program to promote food sufficiency. Congratulations also for successful cooperation of SL AgriTech, Go Negosyo led by Sec. Joey Concepcion and DA under Sec. Dar for last year launching the Masagana 300 project to encourage and honor Filipino rice farmers who achieve 300 cavans harvest per hectare utilizing modern hybrid rice technology.”
FFCCCII has last year also led a coalition of 11 major Filipino Chinese business, civic and cultural federations under the “Filipino Chinese Community Calamity Fund” (FCCCF) to raise P300 million pesos from March to August 2020 for donations of anti-pandemic medical supplies to hospitals nationwide and food relief for people affected by the lockdown in all regions from Luzon to Mindanao. One of the donations was financial support for establishing the Philippines’ biggest testing lab for COVID-19 and other diseases at Red Cross in Port Area, Manila spearheaded by Philippine Red Cross Chairman Richard Gordon. In late 2020, the Filipino Chinese Community Calamity Fund has also donated tons of rice and other food relief aid to typhoon victims in provinces of Albay, Camarines Sur, Catanduanes, Isabela, Cagayan, Bulacan and Marikina City.