The Philippines is looking at more ways to improve its financial resilience to disasters, including enhancing the involvement of the private sector in disaster risk financing (DRF), National Treasurer Rosalia de Leon said.
“Engaging our private sector to be more involved in disaster risk finance helps to minimize the burden on the national government, diversify and spread the risk and deepen the insurance sector market,” she said in a recent webinar on advancing the financial resilience
Citing the 2015 AIR risk model, de Leon said average annual loss due to typhoons and earthquakes has reached P177 billion or over $3.2 billion, which is nearly 1 percent of the country’s gross domestic product (GDP).
“Disasters arising from natural hazards have resulted in a large fiscal impact in our economic system,” she said. “The large impact on disasters in my country makes it imperative for us to be more proactive managers of our risk.”
De Leon said the country likewise is looking to make risk transfer programs more accessible to stakeholders.
“Constant dialogues with local and international partners, the regulators and development partners are being done to develop and implement more accessible risk transfer mechanisms for both public and private sector,” she added.
Aside from enhancing private sector involvement in DRF, de Leon said other ways to boost the country’s financial resilience to disasters include improving agricultural insurance programs, increasing affordability and access to risk finance, and risk pooled and diversified risk transfer programs.
She said the government has conducted reviews and assessments into the agricultural insurance programs of the Philippine Crop Insurance Corporation (PCIC) to identify key points for improvement.
De Leon said it also aims to implement more app risk transfer instruments to suit the needs of the subsistence farmers.
“Supplementing this work, we are looking at different forms of technology such as satellite monitoring systems and crop monitoring systems,” she added.