Rody gives PCA a token copy of the Coco Trust Fund

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte presented a copy of the Certificate of Republic Actc11524 or the Coconut Farmers and Industry Trust Fund Act to Benjamin Madrigal Jr., director of the Philippine Coconut Authority. In a ceremony, Senator Cynthia A. Villar presented the certificate to the President who then presented it to the PCA. Duterte was in Lucena for the joint meeting of the National Working Group and the Regional Working Group to End Local Communist Armed Conflict IV-A (NTF-ELAC). Villar, the chair of the Senate Agriculture and Food Committee, said she was grateful to the President for passing the law which would be a big step towards our goal of improving the lives of 3.5 million Filipino coconut farmers out of 68 coconuts. producing provinces. “The coconut trust fund belongs to our coconut farmers and their families. With the provision of scholarships to our coconut farmers and their children, an annual allowance of 8 percent and 10 percent for health and medical programs in addition to the Philhealth coverage, I am confident this will improve the quality of life for our coconut farmers, ”says Villar. Continuing training and improving knowledge on new coconut production and post-production technologies, Villar said, is also supported by law, with an allocation of 8% of the budget that would be implemented by government agencies for training. With the Coconut Industry Trust Fund Act, Villar also hopes to address the many issues that are blocking the full growth of the coconut industry. “In addition to poverty reduction, the Coconut Industry Trust Fund Law, as well as the Coconut Farmers and Industry Development Plan, can guide the government towards increasing income and social equality for our farmers, ”noted Villar. By law, the Coconut Producers and Industry Development Plan will be prepared by the APC. He said the plan “will set the guidelines and policies for the development and rehabilitation of the coconut industry within 50 years.” The law mandates the Treasury Office to inject 10 billion pesos into the trust fund in the first year, 10 billion pesos in the second year, 15 billion pesos in the third year, 15 billion pesos in the fourth year; and 25 billion pesos in the fifth year. The government began collecting coconut tax funds from coconut growers in 1971 through levies, taxes, fees, and other fees imposed on the sale of rececada copra. In addition to coconut producers, funds have been raised from millers, refiners, processors, exporters and end users of copra. In 2012, the Supreme Court ruled that coconut tax funds belonged to the state, prompting the government to find ways to grow the coconut industry using multibillion-dollar assets.

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