Press Release
February 27, 2011


In a recent interview, Senator Edgardo J. Angara sought the improvement of a national railway system to help battle the rising food prices in the country.

"In the Philippines, transport has a huge impact on the cost of food, accounting for at least 30 percent of food prices and the subsequent price hikes. So I am really concerned about this transportation network--working on a national railway system to add to the growing tri-modal routes spanning the country's islands," he said.

Angara explained how an extended railway network would especially beneficial to previously inaccessible areas of Luzon and Mindanao.

"A good, efficient rail system that can help move people and cargo especially in the distant areas of both Luzon and Mindanao. When I served as Secretary of Agriculture, I could see the abundance of food and goods in Mindanao but their biggest difficulty transporting their products to the consumers," said Angara.

According to Angara, who also chairs the Senate Committee on Science and Technology, railway systems can be built without marring the beautiful landscapes in the country.

"I believe this is possible now because we don't have to destroy the mountains along the way--we can tunnel through using the new technology in train building and tunneling," he said.

Angara elaborated on possible outcomes of the continuing increase on the food costs and its effects on both private and public industries.

"Unless we do something fast, the rising food prices will overtake us all. The government doesn't have enough money to raise wages of its own employees and the private sector will be subjected to strike unless we bring down the cost of food," he warned.

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