Type of Document:
World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF)
Date of Publication:
Place of Publication:
Summary: The first objectives of this study is to understand the policy environment of VAF system in the Philippines and Vietnam. In particular, it examines a range of policy interventions, where incentives are directed to encourage smallholders’ investment in VAF system. The study under this objectives has been completed, and has been summarized in form of a policy brief. The Philippines’ study concludes that:
1. at least in theory, the policy environment in the Philippines is supportive of VAF system, but is insufficient in stimulating smallholder investments.
2. incentives for smallholders were limited while disincentives persist. 3. large holders tend to benefit more from national level policies than smallholders, because the former have more access to policy information and can leverage the associated costs of policy implementation.
4. some issues are effectively addressed through national-level policies, while a number of issues are better addressed by locally formulated policies.
5. where national-level policies do not effectively address the needs of smallholders, locally crafted policies are needed to offset this gap. Policy linkages between national and local levels need to be established, and policymakers need to mobilize adequate responses at both levels.
6. finally, the viability of VAF system depends on a whole set of policy environment that government can provide.
We have organized several meetings with the local government of Lantapan to feedback the above findings. The second objectives of this policy study is to develop an incentive-based policy to promote VAF system at the local level, which is now being carried out with the Local Government of Lantapan. Several meetings have been organized with Lantapan Government officials and policymakers to draft a Municipal Ordinance that defines an incentive mechanism not only for promoting VAF, but for a range of sustainable farming practices adopted by farmers in Lantapan. The draft Municipal Ordinance is now under review by the Legislative Council for adoption. A localized code of practice or set of acceptable sustainable agriculture practices were also developed to support the Ordinance, covering a range of good farming practices including VAF system. Adoption of these practices, serves as criteria for farmers and farmer organizations to benefit from the incentives in-placed. Planning-workshops were also facilitated, which resulted to the development of a 5-year Investment Plan on Incentive Policy for SFS in Lantapan.
The synthesis of the Vietnam and Philippines policy studies has been completed, and a report is currently being finalized. Both countries have policies that provide incentives to promote the forestry and vegetable sectors, but are insufficient to stimulate smallholder investments. While large holders benefit more from national policies than smallholder because of their access to information and resources to influence policy implementation, national incentives for Vietnam s fruit and vegetable industry are more directed to commercial producers in urban areas rather than smallholders in remote areas. Distinctive difference also exists in the process of policy development in both countries. While local governments in the Philippines have policymaking powers enabling formulation of local policies, in Vietnam, the impetus for policy change lies in the central government through the national assembly. The implication in scaling up the impacts of VAF is that, in the Philippines, both national and local policies need to be strengthened to effectively provide adequate response to smallholders, while efforts to promote VAF in Vietnam would be most likely initiated at the level of the National assembly rather than from the province or commune level.