PH, US keen on expanding agricultural cooperation

The Philippines continues to strengthen its ties with international partners to further develop its agricultural sector by engaging in various projects. This came as officials of the Department of Agriculture (DA) led by Senior Undersecretary Domingo Panganiban met with their counterparts from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) headed by Agricultural Counselor Michael Ward and Agricultural Attaché Mark Hanzel on Monday, the DA said in a news release on Tuesday. During the courtesy visit by USDA representatives, Panganiban shared the department’s priority programs under the leadership of President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. The programs, he said, are focused on improving the production of rice, corn, high value crops, livestock, poultry and fisheries, and developing high-quality products for export. Panganiban also conveyed the country’s interest to increase the value of agricultural exports to the United States. He said the country is looking to expand the volume of those that already have market access such as fresh pineapple, young coconut, durian and mangosteen. On the other hand, Ward is hoping that the DA and USDA can deepen their partnership and find ways to collaborate in the areas of agricultural biotechnology, statistics, food safety, regulatory development and trade. The US is the Philippines’ top trading partner for agriculture, fisheries and food products with total trade amounting to USD5.22 billion in 2022. The US has also been a significant source of investments, technology and technical assistance that help advance the productivity and sustainability of the local agriculture sector

Source: Philippines News Agency