Manila, Philippines â€“ Officials of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka visited the Philippines on July 8 to 13 to study the countryâ€™s land administration and management system, including the property valuation and taxation, intending to learn from the Philippinesâ€™ successful experience under the Second Land Administration and Management Project (LAMP2) of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), and the Department of Finance (DOF).
Due to the wide-ranging objectives and achievements of the countryâ€™s land administration program, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations (UN) initiated the study tour. The delegation was led by Agriculture Secretary Wijerathne Sakalasooriya, Lands and Lands Development Secretary T. Asoka Peiris, and Adriana Herrera, Land Tenure Officer of FAO.
The six-day visit to DENR, DOF, Department of Agrarian Reform, Land Registration Authority, and field sites in Cebu and Bohol enabled the Sri Lankan delegates to learn from the LAMP2 innovations in broadening land tenure security, land titling and registration, development and advocacy of land policy and regulatory framework, institutional development and capacity building, and reforms on property valuation and taxation.
â€œThe LAMP program is now considered as one of the best reform programs on land administration and management in Asia, and this study tour intends to generate an exchange of learning for other countries, such as Sri Lanka, to learn from,â€ said Herrera.
In 2011, the UN Special Unit for South-South Cooperation recognized the LAMP project as an â€œexample of successful solution to support rural and agricultural development, and that the experience of the Philippines offers a comprehensive solution to improving land tenure regulation and land rightsâ€ during the 2011 Global South-South Development Expo in Rome, Italy.
â€œThe Philippine experience is a very good program and the exposure was important to help us formulate sound policies on land tenure, and we are very interested particularly on the computerization of land titling and registration,â€ said Secretary Peiris.
Discussions on the DOF-implemented component focused on the gains in the property valuation and taxation reforms, such as the Philippine Valuation Standards, systems development and enhancement of mass appraisal process, the professionalization of the assessors and appraisers under the Real Estate Service Act, the valuation education programs developed in the University of the Philippines Open University, and pilot implementation work in selected cities.
Earlier this year, a delegation from the Socialist Republic of Vietnamâ€™s General Department of Land Administration, Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment also visited the Philippines to learn from the projectâ€™s experience in reforming the land administration and management sector.
LAMP2 is a long-term commitment of the government to address poverty alleviation and promote economic growth through secure land tenure and equitable property valuation.