THE Philippine Crop Insurance Corp. (PCIC) has paid indemnity claims totaling P20.76 million to 3,532 enrolled-farmers in Negros Occidental, covering an area of 3,879 hectares, from January 1 to May this year.
The farmers are enrolled in PCIC’s crop insurance programs through the Negros First Universal Crop Insurance Program (NFUCIP) and Registry System for Basic Sector in Agriculture (RSBSA).
NFUCIP is being implemented in partnership with the Provincial Government while RSBSA, through the Department of Budget and Management.
PCIC records showed that of the said amount, P4.51 million was given to 557 rice farmers with an area of 558.51 hectares due to damage and production losses caused by the prolonged dry weather associated with El Niño.
For the whole Western Visayas, covering Negros Occidental and other provinces in Panay and Guimaras Islands, the agency has already paid P61.34 million, reports showed.
The amount covers 7,842 farmers with a total area of 7,325.32 hectares affected by the prolonged dry weather, it added.
Jose Ma. Torres, insurance underwriter and officer-in-charge of PCIC-Negros Occidental, told Sun.Star Bacolod that with the intensity of damage and losses brought by the calamity, figures are still rising.
Torres said they expect to pay almost P103 million to 15,990 farmers with an area of 15,539.52 hectares by June.
“This is the biggest indemnity claims to be paid by PCIC throughout Western Visayas,” he said, adding that damages and losses incurred by farmers include those caused by disease and pest infestation among crops.
In 2015, PCIC released a total of P28 million in indemnity claims to farmers in Negros Occidental.
Thus, the province has already surpassed for the first five months the insurance claims released last year.
For the entire Western Visayas, the agency has released P110 million in claims last year, only P7 million higher compared to the first half figures this year.
Source – http://www.sunstar.com.ph