The Japanese government is providing over 1,788 tons of Japanese rice worth JPY350 million (approximate PHP154.9 million) to thousands of Filipino families in the Bangsamoro as part of its commitment to advancing food security in the region.
The initiative by the World Food Program (WFP) Philippines is expected to support farming and fishing households, including decommissioned combatants and indigenous peoples in the region.
“Over 1,788 tons of Japanese rice will be given soon to 9,887 families of farmers and fishermen in Bangsamoro! Together with the World Food Programme in the Philippines, may this food aid boost the nutritional needs of the people and advance the food security, peace, and development of the region,” Japanese Ambassador to the Philippines Kazuhiko Koshikawa said Thursday.
Koshikawa signed the grant agreement together with WFP Philippines Country Director Brenda Barton during a ceremony at the Department of Foreign Affairs.
To supplement the food and nutrition needs of the targeted population, the Japanese rice will be fortified with iron prior to distribution, the Embassy said.
“Provision of technical assistance by the WFP to the target communities will further strengthen and assist in restoring their livelihoods. The WFP will collaborate with the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) government to co-implement this project,” it added.
Joining Koshikawa and Barton during the signing were Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Secretary Carlito Galvez, Jr., DFA Acting Secretary Ma. Theresa Lazaro and BARMM Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Agrarian Reform Deputy Minister Ammal Solaiman. (PNA)