The Manila Times



BAYOMBONG, Nueva Vizcaya: Gov. Jose Gambito said he will continue to support the late governor Carlos Padilla’s initiative to digitalize the provincial government, particularly the agriculture sector in the province.

Gambito also said the late governor Padilla led the provincial government of Nueva Vizcaya’s Information Technology Division, in collaboration with partner agencies and institutions in the public and private sectors, the 1st Information and Communications Technology Congress here in April pushing for the digitalization of the province.

He noted the recent visit of the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) and the United States Agency for International Development (USAid) as part of the Strengthening Private Enterprises for the Digital Economy (Speed) Program.

From May 10 to May 12, 2023, local farmers of Nueva Vizcaya were the main focus of the five-day field visit of DTI Assistant Secretary Mary Jean Pacheco and the USAid Chief of Party Vice Catudio Jr. where the Nueva Vizcaya Agricultural Terminal (NVAT) Inc. was chosen as one of the program’s pilot areas in the entire country.

The DTI said the program is a five-year project, which aims to enable small and medium enterprises to participate safely, reliably and competitively in the country’s emerging e-commerce ecosystem.

Gambito also noted that digital technologies, including the internet, mobile technologies and devices, data analytics, artificial intelligence, digitally-delivered services and apps, are changing agriculture and the food system.

“More importantly, these technologies can also help the local government of Nueva Vizcaya improve the efficiency and effectiveness of existing policies and programs including monitoring compliance with environmental policies,” he said.

Gambito added that these technologies will enable the automation of administrative processes for agriculture and the development of expanded government services, such as in relation to extension or advisory services.

He said digital technologies can support trade in agriculture and food products, by linking private-sector suppliers to new and institutional markets and could provide faster and more efficient procedures that are essential for perishable products.

“These technological advances can support the goal of achieving more resilient, productive and sustainable agriculture and food systems, which better meet consumer needs,” Gambito added.

The governor thanked the DTI and USAid for helping NVAT digitize its processes and logistics operations under the Speed Project.

The DTI said the project also involves “the integration of the e-commerce platforms; the provision of assistance that will focus on the welfare of the farmers; the reduction of middlemen in the value chain of operations; and the provision and collection of accurate data on produce for better planning, among others.”

During the field visit, both the DTI Supply Chain and Logistics Management and E-Commerce and the USAid teams met the citrus, onion and vegetable farmers in the towns of Kasibu, Kayapa and Aritao in this province.

DTI Nueva Vizcaya Provincial Director Marietta Salviejo said the whole team also assessed the place and the farmers’ readiness in terms of logistics and digitalization.

Salviejo also said the team also gathered first-hand information on concerns and needs of the farmers that mainly revolved around pricing and marketing their produce, the need for cold storage facilities and other related equipment and/or technology that will add more value.





The Manila Times