Article link: http://bit.ly/1DVqrY7
The Department of Agriculture (DA) is enhancing its existing programs, particularly on crop insurance system in a bid to mainstream climate change adaptation in all its projects and make these calamity and disaster-resilient.
The Philippine Crop Insurance Corporation (PCIC), a government-owned and controlled corporation under the DA is mandated to provide insurance protection to agricultural producers against losses of crops and non-crop agricultural assets due to natural calamities, pests and diseases, and other risk factors.
“The DA has intensified the implementation of its crop insurance system, making it a necessary component of its banner commodity programs for rice, corn, high-value crops, livestock and fisheries, chiefly because we are responsively working within the context of climate change,” DA Secretary Proceso Alcala explained.
In these times of unpredictable weather patterns and extreme weather events, Alcala said insurance for crops and even livestock is indispensable to protect farmers and fisher folk from the risks and adverse effects disasters and climate – related calamities.
He added that having insurance coverage will effectively help farmers and fisher folk recover faster from post-disaster losses.
WIDER INSURANCE COVERAGE
In 2014, the PCIC provided insurance protection to 924,343 farmers and fisher folk, 24.31 percent more than the 743,589 covered in 2013.
Seventy percent of those provided with insurance protection were granted full free insurance coverage under other government programs, such as the insurance protection for subsistence farmers and fisher folk listed in the Department of Budget and Management’s (DBM) Registry System for Basic Sectors in Agriculture (RSBSA), the free agricultural insurance for super-typhoon Yolanda-affected areas, the free agricultural insurance for selected agrarian reform beneficiaries and the DA-Land Bank of the Philippines Sikat-Saka Program.
Insured rice, corn and high-value crop farms likewise expanded in size to 778,375 hectares or 53.82 percent higher than in 2013, while insured heads of livestock also increased to 500,568 or 637.12 percent higher than in 2013.
In 2014, the PCIC paid out a total of about 734.977 million in insurance claims to 99,335 farmers and fisherfolk that is 48.40 percent higher than in 2013.
To be more responsive to its clients, PCIC also periodically reviews its array of insurance products.
In 2014, PCIC developed insurance covers with discounted premium rates for swine and poultry growers, aiming at covering impact of climate change-related extreme weather events, in addition to usual risks.
Likewise, it issued special covers for cooperatives and organizations of subsistence farmers and fisher folk under the group-term insurance scheme.