DA will grant loans of 150 million pesos to CV farmers and fishermen. (File photo)
THE Department of Agriculture-Agricultural Credit Policy Council (DA-ACPC) has allocated 150 million pesos for loans to farmers and fishermen in areas of Central Visayas devastated by Typhoon Odette (Rai).
Bohol will receive the biggest allocation of 70 million pesos, followed by Cebu with 50 million pesos and Negros Oriental with 30 million pesos, said Noel Clarence Ducusin, administrative director of ACPC.
The Central Visayas Department of Agriculture (DA 7) announced the development after a meeting with municipal farmers in Cebu province in March.
The fund is for the implementation of the DA-ACPC’s Survival and Recovery Assistance (Sure) program, which offers zero percent interest on loans repayable in three years.
In Cebu, 38 towns growing crops and producing livestock, as well as 33 towns and villages identified as fishing areas can benefit from the scheme, DA 7 said.
Ligaya Ebarita, credit officer of DA 7, said 2,133 beneficiary households are targeted in Cebu.
Interested borrowers must present a government-issued identification card along with proof of registration in the Agriculture Core Sector Registration System to their municipal agricultural officer as a first step in applying for inclusion in the program.
Priority will be given to farmers and fishermen who have not received any cash benefits from the DA.
In early January, DA 7 Director Joel Elumba said damage to agriculture and fisheries in the Central Visayas from Typhoon Odette had reached at least 3.3 billion pesos, some 139,000 farmers and fishermen being heavily affected by the typhoon.
In Cebu province, the typhoon caused damage from as far north as Bantayan Island to as far south as the city of Oslob.
Elumba said corn, mango, coconut and seaweed growers, as well as chicken and pig farmers, were among those badly affected in Cebu.
Typhoon Odette hit Cebu on December 16, 2021, bringing maximum sustained winds of 175 kilometers per hour (km/h) near the center and gusts of up to 240 km/h, destroying not only crops and agricultural facilities but also homes, commercial structures, and electrical and communications infrastructure.