Press Release
May 12, 2017


The Chairman of the Senate Committee on Justice and Human Rights, Senator Richard J. Gordon held a committee hearing today to remove the restrictions in agricultural free patents and unleash about two to three million agri-free patents, equivalent to at least P387B up to P1T worth of agricultural land.

Gordon, author of Senate Bill No. 1260, otherwise known as the Agri-Free Patent Bill, said that the measure aims to make agricultural land titles immediately tradeable and bankable, provide farmer entrepreneurs much-needed access to credit, and create capital to make investments, create jobs, increase productivity, and reduce poverty in rural areas.

Gordon commented that the current restrictions in agri-free patents under the Public Act leave our farmers with no collateral and effectively deny them access to credit. According to Mr. Johnson Melo of the Rural Bankers Association of the Philippines, the passage of this measure will encourage banks to extend loans to the farmer entrepreneurs at better rates and terms.

Gordon explained that the current situation, where patentees are 1) restricted from mortgaging or selling their land within five years from the issuance of the patent, and 2) given the right to repurchase agri-free patents within five years from transfer or conveyance make for bad economics. These restrictions under the Public Land Act render the agricultural free patents non-tradeable and non-bankable.

With these benefits for both the government and the people, Gordon urged Congress to immediately pass this measure into law.

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