News eDaily06 Jun 2018

Philippines:Bill being drafted to provide for free climate-based crop insurance

06 Jun 2018

A Bill that will replace the distribution of disaster funds to farmers with free climate-based crop insurance is now in the works.

Senator Cynthia Villar, chairman of the Senate committee on agriculture and food, said that the Senate is already drafting the final version of the Free Index-Based Crop Insurance Bill and is targeting to pass it by year-end.

She said this is the first Bill to consider weather conditions as a trigger for insurance claims.

The move aims to strengthen the resilience of small farmers against climate change and extreme weather risks by establishing the regulatory framework and programme for a free weather index-based crop insurance, reports Manila Bulletin.

Based on the initial version of the proposed law, the government will tap private insurance companies and will pay them to distribute crop insurance to farmers.

Ms Villar said that money from the country's disaster fund, instead of being distributed to victims of a calamity, will be used instead to pay for the premium for the climate-based crop insurance. The trigger point for insurance payouts would be determined by the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, and Astronomical Services Administration.

Another crop insurance measure is being pushed by lawmaker Arthur Yap in the House of Representatives. The Bill by Mr Yap, a former agriculture secretary, aims to make available index-based insurance coverage.

A United Nations report has identified the Philippines as the third most-at-risk from climate change in the world, ranked behind the South Pacific island nations of Vanuatu and Tonga.


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