DA eyes P4 billion budget hike to combat ASF

Catherine Talavera – The Philippine Star

October 5, 2021 | 12:00am


MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Agriculture (DA) hopes to achieve significant improvement in the country’s hog industry next year as it may receive a budget increase of P4 billion for its programs aimed at fighting African swine fever (ASF).

Agriculture Secretary William Dar said in a press briefing yesterday that the DA’s budget for 2022 would be used mostly for the repopulation of hogs and in the fight against ASF.

The amount will bring significant improvement as the livestock sector usually receives a budget of P1.4 billion to P1.5 billion annually.

Based on the 2022 National Expenditure Program, the DA is expected to have a budget of P91 billion next year.

This is lower than the P231.8 billion proposed by the agency. But it is 1.05 percent higher than the P90.06-billion allocation that the agency received this year.

Last week, Dar said the DA sought an additional budget of P42 billion on top of the P91 billion as the ASF continues to challenge the agriculture sector.

Earlier, Bureau of Animal Industry director Reildrin Morales reported that the number of barangays in 29 towns and cities with active ASF cases increased from 24 on Sept. 2 to 41 on Sept. 10.

Most of the active ASF cases were recorded in Ilocos provinces, Morales said.

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