THE VALUE of agricultural imports in 2020 fell 11% to P623.98 billion due to the lower imports of commodities such as rice, according to the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA). 

The PSA said that notwithstanding the decline, the value of agriculture imports as a share of all imports rose 14%.  

According to the PSA, the volume of rice imports in 2020 fell 28.7% to 2.23 million metric tons (MT). They fell 22.1% by value to P43.56 billion. Rice accounted for 7% of the overall value of farm imports.

The volume of tobacco imports declined 12.5% to 46,503.7 MT. By value, imports of the commodity dropped 1.7% to P10.06 billion, and accounted for 1.6% of all agricultural import expenditures.

Imports of rubber for 2020 fell 29.2% to 39,727 MT, while value declined 39.3% to P3.10 billion. Rubber accounted for 0.5% of all farm imports by value.  

Garlic imports in 2020 rose 4% to 88,509.8 MT but fell 6.9% by value to P1.18 billion. Garlic accounted for 0.2% of total value of farm imports.

Corn imports by volume in 2020 rose 67.6% to 768,534.7 MT. By value, corn imports rose 30.8% to P9.91 billion and accounted for 1.6% of the value of agricultural imports.

Onion imports in 2020 rose 271% by volume to 87,525.5 MT, while rising 230% by value to P755.59 million. Imports accounted for 0.1% of all farm imports.  

Coffee import volume was 46,277.9 MT, up 31.9%, and rose 17% by value to P3.63 billion. It accounted for 0.6% of the total value of agricultural imports.  

Imports of mung bean rose 11.9% by volume to 41,002.6 MT and rose 10.2% by value to P1.78 billion. It accounted for 0.3% of all farm imports by values.  

“The contribution of other crops such as banana, coconut, sweet potato, and cacao was less than 0.1% each in the total expenditures for agricultural imports,” the PSA said.

“Other crops such as mango, sugarcane, pineapple, cassava, eggplant, tomato, ampalaya, cabbage, and calamansi had no recorded imports in 2020,” it added. — Revin Mikhael D. Ochave