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Significant poverty reduction can result through sustained and improved economic growth. The Australian aid program is well placed and continues to assist the Philippines in strengthening its economic management and improve its investment climate, so strong economic growth can be sustained.
Over the next five years, Australian aid will likewise focus on encouraging private sector investment including increased support for infrastructure and anti-corruption measures. These measures, if implemented with an enhanced measure of accountability by the government, will translate to improved economic opportunities for the people, especially in the rural areas.
The Governments of the Philippines and Australia recognise that good governance enables a country to use its resources effectively to reduce poverty. Economic reform and good governance are essential for attracting investment, encouraging economic growth, and stimulating greater gains in poverty reduction.
Partnership for Economic Governance Reforms (PEGR)
Australian Grant: A$30 million
Duration: 2005 to 2009
Project Site: Nationwide
Partner Contractor: SAGRIC International
GOP Counterparts: National Economic and Development Authority and Department of Budget and Management
The Partnership for Economic Governance Reforms (PEGR) supports specific government agencies and institutions on their governance reform initiatives in line with Philippine development priorities. Priority attention focuses on sound budget management reforms and governance elements in support of improving the investment climate, particularly for infrastructure investment. PEGR is being implemented under a partnering arrangement between the Department of Budget and Management, the National Economic Development Authority, the Department of Finance, and AusAID.
Philippines-Australia Human Resource Development Facility (PAHRDF)
Australian Grant: A$59.6 million
Duration: 2004 to 2009
Project Site: Nationwide
Managing Contractor: SAGRIC International
GOP Counterpart: National Economic and Development Authority
Two successful Australian-funded education and training development programs - the Australian Development Scholarships (ADS) and the Philippines-Australia Short-Term Training Facility (PASTTF) - have been merged under the Philippines-Australia Human Resource Development Facility (PAHRDF) to further improve the country's skills base and maximise development opportunities.
PAHRDF builds on the strengths of ADS and PASTTF and aims to improve the ability of institutions in the Philippines to help reduce poverty and contribute to sustainable and equitable development. PAHRDF focuses on providing short- and long-term training support to targeted government and private institutions rather than on individuals. To ensure that skills and knowledge gained are applied, the Facility will forge partnering agreements and re-entry plans with targeted institutions.
PAHRDF awards 80 scholarships annually to targeted Filipino institutions. Moreover, a total of about 30 scholarships per year are open to Filipinos from other Australian Scholarship programs such as the newly launched Australian Leadership Awards - Scholarships, the Carnegie Mellon-AusAID Scholarships, Endeavour Awards and the University of Wollongong-Centre for Transnational Crime Prevention Scholarships.
Land Administration and Management Program - Phase II (LAMP II)
Australian Grant: A$34 million
Duration: 2005 to 2010
GOP Counterpart: Department of Natural Resources, Department of Finance
LAMP is part of the preparatory phase for a larger and longer term Land Administration and Management (LAM) Program of the Philippine Government which aims to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of land administration and management in the Philippines.
Improving bureaucratic processes has the potential to unlock development, stimulate business, and improve the social and economic lives of millions of people. The Land Administration and Management Program (LAMP), a A$ 48-million initiative from 2001-2010, has been assisting the Philippine Government in its land administration system reforms to contribute to socio-economic development goals. LAMP is a partnership between AusAID, the World Bank and the Philippine Government. The second phase of LAMP (LAMP II) accelerates the process of land administration reform and apply the lessons of LAMP I in selected regions, provinces and municipalities to support the progressive expansion of tenure security and the adoption of approved valuation standards and procedures through sustainable partnership agreements. LAMP II is envisioned to lay the foundation for the improvement of inter-agency collaboration in the delivery of integrated land administration services which support tenure security and property valuation.
Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD) Eradication Project
Since December 1996, AusAID has collaborated with the Bureau of Animal Industry and the UN Food and Agriculture Organization in preventing and controlling the spread of Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD) in the Philippines.
Australia has played a major role in strengthening the Philippines’ capacity to control FMD and attain FMD-free status, which opens up trade opportunities and enhances economic growth for the Philippines. Australia’s assistance has led to Visayas and Mindanao, two of the three major island groups in the Philippines, being declared FMD-free by the International Organisation for Animal Health. Australian support has been extended to eradicate FMD in Luzon, the third and biggest island group, for the Philippines to be internationally certified as FMD-free. Australia’s assistance to the Philippines in FMD-eradication to include Luzon totals over A$ 9 million.
Philippines-Australia Community Assistance Program (PACAP)
Australian Grant: A $28.3 million
Duration: 2005 to 2010
Managing Contractor: Hassall and Associates International
Local Counterparts: Non-Government Organisations, People's Organisations, and Local Government Units
The Philippines-Australia Community Assistance Program (PACAP) has been supporting Filipino communities for the past 20 years. PACAP aims to strengthen civil society and reduce poverty by providing direct assistance to communities. The current phase of the program will run to 2010.
Supporting the Government of the Philippines' Ten-Point Agenda and the Medium Term Philippine Development Plan, PACAP focuses on activities that will improve community access to basic services; strengthen the management and implementation capacity of key local service providers; and help build relationships between communities, non-government organisations, people’s organisations and local government units. Among the programs supported by PACAP include micro-enterprise development, water and sanitation management, watershed development, along with other community-based projects.
PACAP has two modes of assistance - the Focused Community Assistance Scheme (FOCAS) and the Responsive Assistance Scheme. FOCAS consists of a suite of strategically linked, but separately funded activities implemented at selected sites within the CPS targeted provinces of Agusan del Sur, Bohol, Misamis Occidental, Northern Samar, and Surigao del Norte. FOCAS aims to improve livelihoods, increase local appreciation of the community's environmental impact, and improve community advocacy through partnership of stakeholders. To facilitate a cohesive and integrated approach to provincial and national engagement, PACAP recently established provincial offices in the five target provinces.
The Responsive Assistance Scheme is composed of stand-alone activities and projects that proactively contribute to at least one of the current CPS themes, namely, good governance, rural development and education, and security and stability. This approach allows PACAP to continue its flexibility to engage nationwide.
Philippines-Australia Local Sustainability (PALS) Program
Australian Grant: A$31.4 million
Duration: 1999 to 2009
Project Site: Misamis Occidental
Managing Contractor: ACIL Australia Pty Ltd
Local Counterpart: Local Government Units of Misamis Occidental
The PALS Program in Misamis Occidental is piloting a more integrated approach to community-based development and is providing direct assistance to local government units. PALS aims to strengthen broad community and local government unit partnerships in resource planning and management for the promotion of sustainable community livelihoods. It encourages participatory planning to enable communities to identify their priorities, participate in the development process, and manage their physical, human, financial resources more efficiently.
The program assists both communities and local government units to plan and manage activities that improve the livelihoods of the rural poor. Typical community activities include agricultural livelihood initiatives and small-scale infrastructure, especially basic water and sanitation. Examples of local government activities include infrastructure such as farm-to-market roads, farm mechanisation and a province-wide groundwater survey. PALS has expanded the project to cover the entire province.
Local Governance Development Program (Phase I)
• Australian Grant: A$ 3 million
• Duration: 2006 to 2007
• Website: www.lgdp.org.ph
The first phase of the Local Governance Development Program (LGDP) is valued at A$3 million and runs from 2006-2007. LGDP builds on the experience of AusAID in providing technical assistance to local government units, particularly through projects such as the Philippines Regional Municipal Development Project (PRMDP, 1997-2002). The first phase explores potential modalities to promote effective partnerships, structures and systems between larger, more successful LGUs and smaller, marginal LGUs.
LGDP recognizes the need to adopt a decentralized implementation approach to localize assistance by working directly with Local and Provincial Governments through innovative inter-LGU governance arrangements referred herein as Local Area Development Partnerships (LADPs). It also recognizes the importance of donor coordination at the local and national levels, and the role of National Government agencies to facilitate policy reform to enable the sustainability and operational functionality of LADPs. The goal of LGDP is to improve local economic development by strengthening and improving the effectiveness of LGU partnership structures and systems.
International Finance Corporation-Private Enterprise Partnership (IFC-PEP)
Australia has contributed A$1 million to the International Finance Corporation-Private Enterprise Partnership (IFC-PEP), a multi-donor initiative. IFC-PEP provides direct and indirect assistance to support the growth of small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and improve their value addition to the economy. It works with local institutions and government to improve their ability to serve the Philippines’ SME sector.
Public Sector Linkages Program (PSLP)
Australian Grant: Between A$15,000 and A$250,000 per project
The Public Sector Linkages Program (PLSP) aims to improve public sector capacity for governance and management for nationally determined development outcomes in selected partner Asian countries. PLSP offers departments and agencies of Australia, federal, state and territory governments, as well as Australian public universities, the opportunity to compete for grant funding that will transfer capacity-building skills and expertise to their public sector counterpart institutions in partner countries; and support strengthening of sustainable development-focused public sector bilateral and regional linkages. Applicant organisations are required to develop their proposals with the nominated counterpart organisation and to obtain in-principle endorsement from them.
AusAID plans to offer three PSLP funding rounds annually, in November, March and July. Activities are generally, but not necessarily, of up to 12 months duration.