Project Evaluation of the Scaling Up Risk Transfer Mechanisms for Climate Vulnerable Agriculture-based Communities in Mindanao Project

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Evaluation Plan:
2012-2018, Philippines
Evaluation Type:
Final Project
Planned End Date:
02/2018
Completion Date:
01/2018
Status:
Completed
Management Response:
Yes
Evaluation Budget(US $):
20,000

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Title Project Evaluation of the Scaling Up Risk Transfer Mechanisms for Climate Vulnerable Agriculture-based Communities in Mindanao Project
Atlas Project Number: 00076666
Evaluation Plan: 2012-2018, Philippines
Evaluation Type: Final Project
Status: Completed
Completion Date: 01/2018
Planned End Date: 02/2018
Management Response: Yes
Focus Area:
  • 1. Environment & Sustainable Development
  • 2. Others
Corporate Outcome and Output (UNDP Strategic Plan 2014-2017)
  • 1. Output 2.5. Legal and regulatory frameworks, policies and institutions enabled to ensure the conservation, sustainable use, and access and benefit sharing of natural resources, biodiversity and ecosystems, in line with international conventions and national
Evaluation Budget(US $): 20,000
Source of Funding: Project funds
Evaluation Expenditure(US $): 20,000
Joint Programme: No
Mandatory Evaluation: No
Joint Evaluation: No
Evaluation Team members:
Name Title Email Nationality
Roberto Ma. R. Arquiza
GEF Evaluation: Yes
GEF Project Title: Scaling up Risk Transfer Mechanisms for Climate Vulnerable Agriculture-based Communities in Mindanao
Evaluation Type: Terminal Evaluation
Focal Area: Climate Change
Project Type: FSP
GEF Phase: GEF-5
GEF Project ID: 4967
PIMS Number: 5076
Key Stakeholders: PCIC (Central office, Region X and XI), DA, PAGASA, BSWM/DA, PhilRice, CCC, AGFP, ACPC, ATI/DA,
Countries: PHILIPPINES
Lessons
1.

The use of target indicators, more particularly the number of farmers should consider the type of agricultural financial support on production as the WIBI insurance product is intended to be included into a financing package. 


2.

Ensuring successful collaborative partnerships between and among government agencies require formal agreements. 


3.

The conduct of assessments and studies must verify if further actions is needed, whether this be policy-related or action-related, as these could largely contribute to a higher level of attainment on outcomes and objectives. 


4.

Finally, gender mainstreaming goes beyond an active effort of engaging women’s participation in Project activities but includes an understanding of their roles in decision-making and in agricultural activities.


Findings
1.

The pilot nature of the Weather Index-Based Insurance (WIBI) Mindanao Project focused on the Cities of Malaybalay and Valencia in the Province of Bukidnon, Region X.  In Region XI, the project operated in the Cities of Davao, Digos, and Tagum; the Municipalities of Bansalan, Hagonoy, Matanao (Davao del Sur Province), Asuncion, New Corella, Sto. Tomas (Davao del Norte); and, the Districts of Calinan, Tugbok, Buhangin, and Bayanihan (Davao City).


2.

The Project has indeed played a critical role in boosting the economic potential of WIBI as a risk transfer mechanism through the engagement of FSPs, LGUs and other responsible parties and key stakeholders, and the smallholder farmer-beneficiaries.   The Project has contributed in initially raising awareness of communities on increasing climate variability and intensifying/increasing extreme climate change-induced natural disasters, and made headways in the policy front with the inclusion of bills in the legislative and in the executive branches.  For the most part, all these was a consequence of the successful collaboration and contributions among various government agencies and offices and the private sector that endeavored to achieve Project objectives and results in an effective and efficient manner.  


3.

The Project has taken the initiative to engage PCIC as the implementing partner and other responsible parties composed of government agencies to successfully collaborate in addressing the planned activities towards the achievement of the intended outcomes and attainment of the Project objective. 


4.

Relevance of the Project was sustained all throughout the implementation phase, maintaining focus on the long-term solution and the identified barriers that were being addressed by the Project outcomes, outputs and activities.


5.

WIBI, to a large extent, has proven its validity in the face of continuing weather variability and changing intensities have provided better evidence in addressing basis risks. 


6.

The indicative amounts farmers are willing to pay WIBI premiums could begin a process of reducing subsidies over time.  Promoting WIBI among the insurance and reinsurance sector have began and interest could  have been further boosted had an integrated financial package been introduced.


7.

The WIBI impact assessment study, although done along certain limitations, has concluded that the project has the potential to become an effective mechanism for delivering assistance to farmers to enable them to break free from poverty trap.     

 


8.

Finally, the Project successfully combined the elements of climate risk-transfer mechanism and adaptation investments to promote the WIBI industry that can be sustained with the continuing collaboration among PCIC and the implementing partners during the planned roll out.  It has demonstrated its effectiveness as a mechanism for delivering assistance through payouts to poor and vulnerable farmers to enable them to break free from poverty trap, while supporting farmers on resilient farming methods. 


Recommendations
1

Project Design - One of the intended design feature of WIBI product was to bundle it into existing credit programs of the Department of Agriculture (DA).  However, the non-development of integrated financial package during the Project term, including other bundling options with potential sources of agricultural credit resulted into mostly ‘self-financed’ WIBI farmers supported by local governments. The results of the portfolio assessment of FSPs in relation to WIBI may have been more conclusive had there been a larger number of formal WIBI borrowers.

2

Project Design - On stakeholders’ participation, the official participation of various government agencies was indeed a difficult task due to differing mandates.  A multi-stakeholder agreement in which all parties simultaneously formally declared their official commitment in a signing ceremony could have been a culminating activity during the official launch of the Project.

3

Project Implementation - The generation of data on farmers, for both enrollees and non-enrollees and for repeat and non-repeat enrollees, would have enriched the analysis of the target end-beneficiaries of the Project – although this has been an approved undertaking during the course of implementation. Activities on gender analysis and mainstreaming could have included formal assessments on aspects such as the division of labor, control of resources and benefits, mapping of the 24-hour typical day activity, and accessibility and level of benefits with economic institutions (e.g. banks, trainings, etc.).

4

Project Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) - The Project has generated all the required UNDP and GEF mandated reports using the templates. The Project needed to go beyond these templates (i.e. quarterly and annual progress reports, the annual project implementation reports, the annual work and financial plan) and generate templates for the internal use of the Project Board and the PMO with respect to the deliverables of responsible parties and contracted parties, and for specific activities. 

5

Reinforcement of Initial Gains of Project - The WIBI Mindanao Project might have been introduced, but understanding of the risk transfer mechanism and climate resiliency with farmers remain low.  This could be improved with the timely dissemination and distribution to the farmers too of information materials (in the local dialect) for a better understanding and application.  Simple yet sturdy print materials with illustrations has proven effective especially with the rural poor agricultural sector.

6

On the assessment studies made, a cursory review of its findings, conclusions and recommendations strongly suggest for the most part that additional concluding activities and/or issuance of new/revised guidelines are needed prior to the roll out of WIBI on a larger scale.  Reference is made on the portfolio assessment on FSPs; index development; crop water requirement; expansion and establish conclusive correlation between weather and yield for the 4 initial crops (banana, cacao, coconut, and sugarcane) and for new identified additional crops; reinsurance; willing-to-pay; premium setting; payout; impact of WIBI on yield; and impact of WIBI on poverty reduction and farmer productivity with gender perspective. 

7

Organizational capabilities of PCIC have to expand through the development and establishment of actuarial and product development units.  When such capabilities are competently achieved, prospects for PCIC to provide this type of insurance can be realized.  PCIC has to continue its collaborative institutional linkages with PhilRice and PAGASA, and further pursue initiatives with the private sector for their involvement as conduits for WIBI products in reinsurance.

8

The development of the integrated financial package can be location and crop specific and to ensure success, institutional arrangements with LGUs, local financial retailers, and other key value chain players should be established. Likewise, the willingness-to-pay factor can be addressed through a decreasing proportion of government subsidies, i.e. increasing payment level by the insurance beneficiary.

1. Recommendation:

Project Design - One of the intended design feature of WIBI product was to bundle it into existing credit programs of the Department of Agriculture (DA).  However, the non-development of integrated financial package during the Project term, including other bundling options with potential sources of agricultural credit resulted into mostly ‘self-financed’ WIBI farmers supported by local governments. The results of the portfolio assessment of FSPs in relation to WIBI may have been more conclusive had there been a larger number of formal WIBI borrowers.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/05/15]

A number of financial institutions and cooperative signed a MOU with PCIC to signify their strong interest in engaging WIBI as part of their product portfolio. Regular dialogue and series of discussions were conducted with these institutions, however, the commitment of these banks into number of farmers or client was not firmly decided and achieved. In addition, most of their clients were already enrolled in traditional/conventional crop insurance which is bundled to the existing loan products.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Integration of weather index-based insurance product into existing credit programs of DA a. Preliminary discussion with Agricultural Credit Policy Council (ACPC) to decide on the program where WIBI can be bundled considering the pre-conditions of the insurance and loan product b. ACPC to promote the adoption of IFP to their roster or affiliated financial institutions
[Added: 2018/05/15] [Last Updated: 2018/09/16]
Philippine Crop Insurance Corporation (PCIC) 2018/07 Completed
Promotion of PCIC and ACPC to financial service providers through WIBI literacy seminars a. Identify the conditions and design of the policy contract to be agreed upon both by PCIC and the FSPs b. Outline the procedure and identify incentives for FSPs for promoting WIBI to their clients
[Added: 2018/05/15] [Last Updated: 2018/09/16]
PCIC 2018/07 Completed
Conduct of regular product promotion with LGUs and farmer organizations to achieve the target number of enrollees
[Added: 2018/05/15] [Last Updated: 2018/09/16]
PCIC, Local Government Unit (LGU) 2018/09 Completed
2. Recommendation:

Project Design - On stakeholders’ participation, the official participation of various government agencies was indeed a difficult task due to differing mandates.  A multi-stakeholder agreement in which all parties simultaneously formally declared their official commitment in a signing ceremony could have been a culminating activity during the official launch of the Project.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/05/15]

This is a good recommendation and if it is possible to synchronize the timing and process of each partner agency (i.e. approval of MOAs and workplan), ceremonial signing of agreements could have be included in the project launch. However, with the real dynamics in the government, the finalization of MOAs with responsible parties happened after the official project launching in June 2015. PCIC will consider this in the future and will try to work out on the timing with project partners.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Establish new and strengthen existing partnerships with relevant agencies in improving the WIBI product and sustaining the implementation a. Identify potential partners of PCIC in WIBI expansion including the development of indices for new weather parameters and crops b. Discuss with partners specific roles and outputs that will contribute to expansion of WIBI program in the Country c. Prepare legal instruments with detailed work plan and budget in synchronize with other partners agencies prior to the official project launch (if any)
[Added: 2018/05/15] [Last Updated: 2018/09/16]
PCIC 2018/08 Completed
3. Recommendation:

Project Implementation - The generation of data on farmers, for both enrollees and non-enrollees and for repeat and non-repeat enrollees, would have enriched the analysis of the target end-beneficiaries of the Project – although this has been an approved undertaking during the course of implementation. Activities on gender analysis and mainstreaming could have included formal assessments on aspects such as the division of labor, control of resources and benefits, mapping of the 24-hour typical day activity, and accessibility and level of benefits with economic institutions (e.g. banks, trainings, etc.).

Management Response: [Added: 2018/05/15]

The regular monitoring of data of farmers should have been one of the priorities to ensure that the project is generating impact. Nonetheless, with the initial activities that are prerequisite to the farmers’ enrollment in WIBI, measuring impacts was indeed a challenge for the PMO. Furthermore, the gender participation of female farmers in the project is high and almost equal as the male. While this is a valid recommendation, the Management believes that a deeper understanding and appreciation of M&E activities could have improved the data management and analysis.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Set-up a M&E system to ensure that farmers’ data are regularly collected and analyzed based on the project results framework a. Discuss with the M&E specialist on the initial indicators included in the M&E tool that will determine the achievement of targets b. Regularly update M&E system at the end of each cropping cycle by coordinating with local partners on the valid and recent information of farmers
[Added: 2018/05/15] [Last Updated: 2018/09/16]
M&E Specialist; PCIC 2018/06 Completed
Observe that the indicators and project activities are gender-sensitive and responsive following the guidelines on mainstreaming Gender and Development (GAD)
[Added: 2018/05/15] [Last Updated: 2018/09/16]
PCIC, GAD Focal 2018/06 Completed
4. Recommendation:

Project Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) - The Project has generated all the required UNDP and GEF mandated reports using the templates. The Project needed to go beyond these templates (i.e. quarterly and annual progress reports, the annual project implementation reports, the annual work and financial plan) and generate templates for the internal use of the Project Board and the PMO with respect to the deliverables of responsible parties and contracted parties, and for specific activities. 

Management Response: [Added: 2018/05/15]

The Project Management Office has complied with all the reports required for submission to UNDP and donor agency. The PCIC, as implementing partners used these reports as basis of project progress and accomplishments. The regular reporting to the members of the project board and WIBI development team is sufficient to inform the partners and senior management on the status of the project. There were also opportunities wherein  the PMO presents to PCIC Board of Directors. Moreover, aside from project physical accomplishments, annual spot checks and audit were also carried out and corrective actions from the management were warranted. With these tools and procedures, PCIC was confident that the project had checks and balances during the project cycle.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Establish internal monitoring system to ensure tracking of project activities and accomplishments a. PMO to develop an internal tracking tool to monitor timely and quality delivery of outputs of partners b. Review of the accomplishment reports submitted by project partners in conjunction with the project results framework
[Added: 2018/05/15] [Last Updated: 2019/01/04]
PCIC 2018/12 Completed
5. Recommendation:

Reinforcement of Initial Gains of Project - The WIBI Mindanao Project might have been introduced, but understanding of the risk transfer mechanism and climate resiliency with farmers remain low.  This could be improved with the timely dissemination and distribution to the farmers too of information materials (in the local dialect) for a better understanding and application.  Simple yet sturdy print materials with illustrations has proven effective especially with the rural poor agricultural sector.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/05/15]

There are a number of information and communication materials produced in this project with versions in local dialect. The management acknowledges that the overall design and aesthetics of these materials need to be refined according to the taste and comfortability of users to ensure that messages are comprehensible. The management will carefully plan, alongside with the project activities, the design and communication channels to be used for forthcoming WIBI literacy activities.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Develop relevant and complete set of communication materials and knowledge products that will support the promotion of WIBI to farmers, financial institutions and local partners. a. Conduct primary data gathering activities on the preference of farmers in communication materials b. Preparation of communication and promotion strategy of WIBI program c. Development and production of communication materials for distribution
[Added: 2018/05/15] [Last Updated: 2018/09/16]
Communications Consultant, PCIC Head Office and Regional Offices 2018/06 Completed
6. Recommendation:

On the assessment studies made, a cursory review of its findings, conclusions and recommendations strongly suggest for the most part that additional concluding activities and/or issuance of new/revised guidelines are needed prior to the roll out of WIBI on a larger scale.  Reference is made on the portfolio assessment on FSPs; index development; crop water requirement; expansion and establish conclusive correlation between weather and yield for the 4 initial crops (banana, cacao, coconut, and sugarcane) and for new identified additional crops; reinsurance; willing-to-pay; premium setting; payout; impact of WIBI on yield; and impact of WIBI on poverty reduction and farmer productivity with gender perspective. 

Management Response: [Added: 2018/05/15]

The findings from specific studies conducted under WIBI Mindanao Project will be useful and will provide basis for the design of program expansion. However, refinement of results and additional information and analysis are needed to strengthen and deepen the recommendations for each study. PCIC will ensure that these results will be reviewed and follow-through discussions with study leaders will be done if necessary.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Synthesize the findings from the studies conducted under WIBI Mindanao Project to ensure integration with the project design of WIBI expansion a. Conduct post-project discussion with the team leaders of each study for clarifications and further information b. Ensure that recommendations and findings from studies were considered and integrated in project design
[Added: 2018/05/15] [Last Updated: 2018/09/16]
PCIC 2018/05 Completed
7. Recommendation:

Organizational capabilities of PCIC have to expand through the development and establishment of actuarial and product development units.  When such capabilities are competently achieved, prospects for PCIC to provide this type of insurance can be realized.  PCIC has to continue its collaborative institutional linkages with PhilRice and PAGASA, and further pursue initiatives with the private sector for their involvement as conduits for WIBI products in reinsurance.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/05/15]

Part of the PCIC’s mandate is to continue to develop innovative insurance products for vulnerable farmers in the Philippines. With support from our institutional partners like UNDP, PhilRice and PAGASA, among others, the organization will ensure that the learnings and capacities gained from implementing WIBI pilots are adopted by PCIC personnel involved in the projects. Since the management decided to sustain the WIBI program by expanding it to other regions, the engagement and participation of the aforementioned partners will still remain.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Draft a legal instrument such as Memorandum of Agreement (MOA), Joint Administrative Order (JAO) or Department Order (DO) to ensure sustainable partnerships a. Prepare annual workplan including WIBI-related activities and further research collaboration for product improvement b. Conduct regular meetings with agencies involved in implementing WIBI program to ensure progress
[Added: 2018/05/15] [Last Updated: 2018/09/16]
PCIC Legal, PhilRice, PAGASA 2018/06 Completed
8. Recommendation:

The development of the integrated financial package can be location and crop specific and to ensure success, institutional arrangements with LGUs, local financial retailers, and other key value chain players should be established. Likewise, the willingness-to-pay factor can be addressed through a decreasing proportion of government subsidies, i.e. increasing payment level by the insurance beneficiary.

Management Response: [Added: 2018/05/15]

Designing a product that will cater to specific requirements of a community will require a generous amount of time to conduct assessment studies to identify the existing financial retailers, value chain players and preferences of the local partners and farmers themselves. In an ideal situation, projects shall build upon on the needs of the target beneficiaries or to apply a “bottom-up” approach in project design. However, the richness of information that the WIBI Mindanao Project has generated in the past three years provides a basis for PCIC management to deliver an evidence-based project design. This recommendation is highly acknowledge and PCIC will ensure that this will be considered in the WIBI program expansion.

Key Actions:

Key Action Responsible DueDate Status Comments Documents
Conduct an assessment survey to identify the existing and potential project partners for WIBI expansion a. Initiate exploratory discussions with the local governments and financial institutions to identify implementation arrangements b. Carry out primary data gathering activities to determine farmers’ preferences on the design of financial packages
[Added: 2018/05/15] [Last Updated: 2018/09/16]
PCIC Regional Offices 2018/09 Completed

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