Alexa
  • Directory of Taiwan

Philippine land reform extended for 5 years

Philippine land reform extended for 5 years

The Philippine government's program to buy private farmland and sell it to poor farmers with low-interest loans was extended Friday for another five years, the president's office said.
Agrarian unrest helped spark a 40-year-old communist rebellion in the Southeast Asian country, where a third of the 90 million people are poor, many of them landless farmers.
President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo's office said the new law, with a 150 billion peso ($3.1 billion) budget, also will provide funds to help increase land productivity. Sixty percent of the money is meant for land acquisition.
Under the program, which started in 1988, farmers pay for their land under a 30-year loan with low interest.
A farmers' advocate group, however, said the new law does not contain reforms that give farmers more power.
The left-wing Peasant Movement of the Philippines called on Filipinos to ensure the 150 billion pesos will not pay for overvalued private lands and line pockets of corrupt officials.
The government has yet to make a full accounting of previous funds for land reform, added Willy Marbella, the group's deputy secretary general.
Archbishop Angel Lagdameo, president of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of the Philippines, which has been pushing for land reform, welcomed the law but vowed to monitor its implementation.
"The money allotted for it must be used with accountability and justice," the archbishop said.


Updated : 2021-10-27 09:13 GMT+08:00