May 11, 2023
As a move to support upland farmers reach new markets, a hanging bridge with pathway in Barangay Burgos, Municipality of Carranglan, Nueva Ecija was inaugurated on May 11th under the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) cooperation, Forestland Management Project (FMP).
FMP aims forestry management with the participatory approach and community development through agroforestry facility development, such as irrigation systems, roads, and bridges.
The newly inaugurated hanging bridge further provides access to FMP site spanning 266 hectares in the Barat watershed located in the Municipality of Carranglan. Prior to the project, farmers in Carranglan had difficult time crossing the river to get their produce to the market. They had to either walk across the river, ride on motorcycles, or use another route over a wooden bridge that was 3 km away. The safety of the farmers was jeopardized by crossing the river, especially during the typhoon season.
The current Marcos administration has been emphasizing sound agricultural development as among the priorities of the Philippines. The DENR-JICA cooperation, FMP, is also contributing to this priority by ensuring easier and safer access to markets and agriculture for local farmers whose livelihood is restricted due to inadequate infrastructure.
"The FMP changes the lives of many communities around watershed areas. Local communities become self-sustaining forest managers - helping organize the people, developing their capacities, empower them, and building socioeconomic infrastructure that benefit farmers and residents," said IDE Soichiro, JICA Senior Representative.
Other than Nueva Ecija, FMP project sites include Ifugao, Nueva Vizcaya, Quirino, and Iloilo. JICA and DENR have been establishing tree and agroforestry plantations to increase national forest cover, building bridges, pathways, farm to market roads, irrigation systems, and developing enterprises in those areas.
The FMP infrastructure forms part of a comprehensive strategy to protect river basins (Upper Magat, Cagayan, Pampanga, Jalaur) through community-based management approach. As they become stewards of natural forest resources, they do not only secure their livelihood, but they also help conserve the environment.
FMP has established 71,300 hectares of tree and agroforestry plantations in its project sites that are continuously maintained and managed by people's organizations, which will eventually address another pressing issue--climate change.
Other than FMP, JICA has been implementing various climate change-responsive projects in the Philippines including eco-friendly transport infrastructure, disaster risk management, and public-private partnership introducing Japanese technology that answer issues in greenhouse gas emission and disaster risk management.
For more information on FMP, you may visit this link:
The project site before the bridge construction.
Photo courtesy of DENR.
The project site during the bridge construction.
Photo courtesy of DENR.
The completed DENR-JICA FMP hanging bridge.
Photo courtesy of the DENR.
The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) is the executing agency of Japanese Official Development Assistance (ODA), which handles technical cooperation, ODA loans and investment, and grant aid, as well as cooperation volunteers and disaster relief programs. JICA is the world's largest bilateral aid agency with its scale of operations amounting to about JPY 1,536.1 billion for JFY 2021 and a worldwide network of almost 100 overseas offices including the Philippines.
For more information on JICA and JICA Philippines' activities, please log on to https://www.jica.go.jp/english and https://www.jica.go.jp/philippine/english/index.html. Follow our Facebook page for more updates: https://www.facebook.com/jicaphilippines (external link)