• A report by the Southeast Asian Regional Center for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture (Searca) noted that the COVID-19 pandemic is expected to reduce the volume of agriculture output in the Southeast Asian region by 3.11 percent.
  • The study said that the loss is equivalent to at least 17.03 million metric tonnes of agricultural production for the first quarter of 2020 as a result of a decline in farm labour that affected 100 million farmers. It also said that this might result to a US$3.76 billion loss, or 1.4 per cent, in gross domestic product for the region.
  • Searca asserted that a unique balance must be achieved among countries on two important goals, which are trade and food security. Representatives of Searca also suggested the “collective” enhancement of capacities leading to higher agricultural productivity. They added, “Effective coordination mechanisms among countries to reduce trade and food insecurities both at the national and regional levels in the long-term must be continuously pursued.”

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