Congress of the Philippines
Third Regular Session
Begun and held in Metro Manila, on Monday, the twenty-seventh day of July, two thousand nine. Republic Act No. 9700 August 7, 2009
AN ACT STRENGTHENING THE COMPREHENSIVE AGRARIAN REFORM PROGRAM (CARP), EXTENDING THE ACQUISITION AND DISTRIBUTION OF ALL AGRICULTURAL LANDS, INSTITUTING NECESSARY REFORMS, AMENDING FOR THE PURPOSE CERTAIN PROVISIONS OF REPUBLIC ACT NO. 6657, OTHERWISE KNOWN AS THE COMPREHENSIVE AGRARIAN REFORM LAW OF 1988, AS AMENDED, AND APPROPRIATING FUNDS THEREFOR Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the Philippines in Congress assembled:: Section1. Section 2 of Republic Act No. 6657, as amended, otherwise known as the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Law of 1988, is hereby further amended to read as follows: "SEC. 2. Declaration of Principles and Policies. - It is the policy of the State to pursue a Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program (CARP). The welfare of the landless farmers and farmworkers will receive the highest consideration to promote social justice and to move the nation toward sound rural development and industrialization, and the establishment of owner cultivatorship of economic-size farms as the basis of Philippine agriculture. "The State shall promote industrialization and full employment based on sound agricultural development and agrarian reform, through industries that make full and efficient use of human and natural resources, and which are competitive in both domestic and foreign markets: Provided, That the conversion of agricultural lands into industrial, commercial or residential lands shall take into account, tillers' rights and national food security. Further, the State shall protect Filipino enterprises against unfair foreign competition and trade practices. "The State recognizes that there is not enough agricultural land to be divided and distributed to each farmer and regular farmworker so that each one can own his/her economic-size family farm. This being the case, a meaningful agrarian reform program to uplift the lives and economic status of the farmer and his/her children can only be achieved through simultaneous industrialization aimed at developing a self-reliant and independent national economy effectively controlled by Filipinos. "To this end, the State may, in the interest of national welfare or defense, establish and operate vital industries. "A more equitable distribution and ownership of land, with due regard to the rights of landowners to just compensation, retention rights under Section 6 of Republic Act No. 6657, as amended, and to the ecological needs of the nation, shall be undertaken to provide farmers and farmworkers with the opportunity to enhance their dignity and improve the quality of their lives through greater productivity of agricultural lands. "The agrarian reform program is founded on the right of farmers and regular farmworkers, who are landless, to own directly or collectively the lands they till or, in the case of other farmworkers, to receive a just share of the fruits thereof. To this end, the State shall encourage and undertake the just distribution of all agricultural lands, subject to the priorities and retention limits set forth in this Act, taking into account ecological, developmental, and equity considerations, and subject to the payment of just compensation. The State shall respect the right of small landowners, and shall provide incentive for voluntary land-sharing. "As much as practicable, the implementation of the program shall be community-based to assure, among others, that the farmers shall have greater control of farmgate prices, and easier access to credit. "The State shall recognize the right of farmers, farmworkers and landowners, as well as cooperatives and other independent farmers’ organizations, to participate in the planning,...