Japan allocates P22.15-M to support Philippine silk industrry

Japan allocates P22.15-M to support Philippine silk industrry

- in Philippines
A caretaker walking through crops of mulberry trees (the main food of silkworms) in Kapangan, Benguet province in April 18, 2008. The Japanese government is extending a P22 million peso loan to improve the Philippine sericulture industry. Image from Reuters.

The Philippine sericulture sector is to receive a total of USD426,168 or about P22.15 million in support from Japan through its Embassy in Manila. The provinces of Benguet, Aklan, and Misamis Oriental will benefit from the grant.

Japanese Ambassador to the Philippines Koji Haneda signed on Thursday the grant’s contract. Other signatories include the Organization for Industrial, Spiritual and Cultural Advancement International (OISCA), a Japanese non-government organization that conducts activities in the Philippines.

Sericulture is the production of silk, including the rearing of silk worms for this purpose.

A similar sericulture business supporting project has previously been implemented in Negros Island.  According to the Japanese Embassy, OISCA’s assistance in Negros Island has been supporting the silk farming industry for more than 20 years. Through this, the domestic sericulture business has come a long way.

The Japanese government’s allocation of funding will help transfer the technology and program to the new beneficiary provinces.

The project will sponsor leadership development seminars for beneficiaries to learn how to spread and manage sericulture operations, short-term trainings for sericulture farmers, and programs on mulberry field maintenance.

One of the Philippine’s most iconic garbs, the Barong Tagalog, needs raw silk materials for its productions. While the Philippines manufactures a number of textiles domestically, such as natural fibers like piña which is made from the leaves of a pineapple plant, silk materials are commonly imported from other countries.

The Philippine sericulture sector is aiming to increase the domestic production of raw silk materials to minimize the need for importation. Japan’s support deployment project and financial grant for the local sericulture industry is an essential initiative to achieve complete domestic production of all silk threads to be used in Philippine manufacturing and businesses.


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