P30M new foreign-funded road links 7 Leyte villages to market

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) turned over to the local government on Sunday the first foreign-funded farm-to-market road (FMR) under the Rural Agro-Enterprise Partnership for Inclusive Development and Growth (RAPID Growth) project in Jaro, Leyte. The road rehabilitation project was prioritized as it is expected to boost the coconut industry in several villages in Jaro town, empowering 833 farmers in the province, said DTI Eastern Visayas regional director Celerina Bato. The PHP30-million project, which started in June 2022, benefits the villages of Tinambacan, Uguiao, Rubas-Crossing, Pitogo, Daro, Kalinawan and Canapuan in Jaro town. This is part of the PHP2.3-billion initiative funded by the International Fund for Agricultural Development. 'The realization of the FMR project will ease the access and transport of raw materials from the farmers to the market and reduce travel time and transportation expenses of the farmers and micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs), which would entail enhanced income,' Bato told the Philippine News Agency on Monday. The rehabilitation and improvement of the two-kilometer Tinambacan FMR in Jaro town, Bato said, is the first FMR project in Eastern Visayas and in the entire Philippines to kickstart its implementation among other RAPID Growth-implementing regions. Key officials from the DTI, Department of the Interior and Local Government, Department of Public Works and Highways and the local government unit led by Mayor Jassie Lou Tañala attended the ceremony. 'This road is not just a farm-to-market route, but a lifeline connecting communities and fostering progress. As we embark on this new journey, let us remember that these roads pave the way for growth, unity and opportunity for all,' Tañala said during the event. DILG Regional Director Arnel Agabe said that aside from coconut farmers, 2,412 families will also benefit from the project in seven villages with 5,160 hectares of agricultural land cultivating other crops such as banana, cacao, high-value vegetables, cassava and corn. 'This is a huge celebration not only for the people of Tinambacan village, but also for the whole municipality of Jaro, linking our farmers to progress by providing easier transportation of their agricultural products,' Agabe said in his message. The RAPID Growth project aims to propel agriculture-based processing enterprises and entrepreneurial communities to become innovative, productive, and competitive so they would be able to meet global challenges and demands

Source: Philippines News Agency