SAN FERNANDO CITY, La Union – Senator Joseph Victor Ejercito Estrada is pushing for the strict implementation of Republic Act No. 10845, or the Anti-Agricultural Smuggling Act of 2016 to help farmers in the country.
Estrada, the principal author of RA No. 10845, said here Thursday that the law will prevent the rampant smuggling of agricultural products such as garlic and onions, the Ilocos’ top crops.
“I hope it (RA No. 10845) will be implemented strictly because this will help our farmers a lot, especially their income. This law will prevent all forms of smuggling of agri-products and violating it is a heinous crime, its economic sabotage,” Estrada said.
Estrada said that due to the unabated smuggling of agricultural goods, Filipino farmers are being left behind because traders are choosing imported goods for their business. I hope the current administration will give priorities to this law so that the agricultural industry in our country would innovate with the use of modern technologies,” he said.
Estrada, who was the guest during the State of the Province Address of Gov. Francisco Emmanuel Ortega III, said the law will also help tobacco farmers to cope with their losses due to the nationwide ban on smoking.
“We are looking into the plight of tobacco farmers because the smoking ban is an international advocacy about health concerns. There is also one big cigarette company who stopped operation due to tax issues and this company is the one buying tobacco products in Northern Luzon,” he said.
Estrada also gave assurance to help the province in the health and agricultural projects as these anchored to the agri-tourism programs of Ortega’s administration.
Ortega expressed his gratitude for Estrada’s support and his plans to provide assistance to the health facilities of the province. Jun Elias/NPN-northboundasia.com