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How is agriculture developing in the Philippines?

Как се развива земеделието на Филипините?

The Philippines is primarily an agricultural country, with a large proportion of the population living in rural areas and supporting themselves through agricultural activities. Official data for 2022 reported that about a quarter of employed Filipinos work in the agricultural sector, which consists of four sub-sectors: agriculture, fisheries, livestock and forestry.

In the same year, the sector generated a gross value added of about 1.78 trillion Philippine pesos, equivalent to about 8.9 percent of the country's gross domestic product.

After two years of contraction due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the agricultural industry in the Philippines has finally started to show signs of recovery this year, although it remains at a slower pace compared to pre-pandemic periods.

Structurally, due to the terrain and tropical climate conditions, agriculture and fisheries are the largest agricultural sub-sectors in the country. Production of crops such as sugarcane, rice, coconut and bananas is intensive on a national scale and constitutes a major part of exports.

In recent years, oils, fruits and nuts, along with animal and vegetable fats, have contributed to an increase in total agricultural exports from the Philippines.

On the other hand, the fisheries sector, which consists of three sub-sectors: commercial, municipal and aquaculture, has shown slow growth in recent years. The export value of the country's main fishery products has also declined in recent years as the volume of production fluctuates. Among the main contributing factors are climate change and the practice of uncontrolled overfishing.

The slow growth of the agricultural sector in the Philippines is due to the rampant conversion of arable land into residential subdivisions, industrial parks and resorts. Of the 30 million hectares of land, only a third is used for agricultural activities.

In addition, the country's geographical location makes it vulnerable to natural disasters such as floods and drought, further contributing to the decline in production.

Investments in technology and innovation are necessary steps to diversify and transform the country's agricultural output, along with increased production support and improved policies to prioritize farmers' needs.

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