With the aim of helping small scale rubber farmers, Director Cheryl L. Eusala of the Philippine Rubber Research Institute (PRRI) and Director Norman William Kraft of the Agricultural Credit and Policy Council (ACPC) recently held a productive meeting to explore collaborative efforts in providing assistance to rubber farmers. The meeting took place in response to Director Eusala’s request for a courtesy visit to the ACPC.
During the meeting, both parties discussed the potential collaboration between PRRI and ACPC to enhance access to credit and financial services for rubber farmers. As part of the proposed collaboration, rubber farmers seeking financial assistance or loans will be required to obtain an endorsement from the PRRI. The PRRI, in turn, will endorse loan applications, provided that the funds are to be utilized for rubber farming purposes and in adherence to improved technology practices.
Director Eusala emphasized the importance of incorporating improved technology into rubber farming practices, stating that financial assistance would be rendered futile if not accompanied by the adoption of modern techniques. She also highlighted the economic potential of rubber production in uplifting farmers and helping them escape poverty. Director Eusala said that smallholder rubber farmers often struggle to obtain financial loans from agencies and emphasized the vital role of credit support in empowering these farmers and enabling them to expand their operations. She expressed her hope that the joint effort between PRRI and ACPC would address this issue and provide much-needed financial assistance to smallholder rubber farmers, ultimately contributing to their long-term success and socioeconomic well-being. A memorandum of agreement for this collaboration will soon be furnished to solidify the shared commitment between PRRI and ACPC. This pivotal document will lay the foundation for a strategic alliance, affirming the roles and responsibilities of both institutions and outlining the comprehensive framework through which enhanced access to credit and financial services will be provided to rubber farmers.
To further support this partnership, the ACPC has committed to benchmarking improved technology in rubber farming in Makilala, North Cotabato within the month. This initiative will allow stakeholders to gain insights into best practices and establish guidelines for efficient and sustainable rubber farming.
Director Eusala expressed the PRRI’s admiration for the ACPC’s dedication to rural and agricultural finance innovation. She acknowledged the importance of fostering partnerships to advance the rubber industry in the Philippines and sought to leverage the expertise of the ACPC to benefit PRRI’s efforts in supporting rubber farmers.
The courtesy visit, held on June 20, 2023, proved to be a significant step toward establishing a mutually beneficial partnership. The PRRI and ACPC eagerly anticipate further discussions and actions that will enhance the livelihoods of rubber farmers and drive the growth of the Philippine rubber industry. This holds immense promise for the future of rubber farming in the Philippines, ensuring a sustainable and prosperous future for rubber farmers across the country.
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