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Replanting mangroves by cash for work, protected with wind/storm index insurance, and bundled with credit-life Insurance for the planters.



The Philippines has a coastline of 36,289 kilometers, the fifth longest in the world. In 1918, the country had an estimated 500,000 hectares of mangroves which had since been reduced to 117,000 hectares in 2012, according to the Philippine Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR). Mangrove wetlands are a key natural resource for marine and other species being an area for breeding, habitation and a source of nutrients. Mangroves also purify water from the uplands before it exits to the sea. Some mangrove wetlands serve as catch basins for fresh water. These areas protect coastlines from strong winds and storms (called typhoons in the Philippines). Mangroves are natural barriers against the surge of flood waters from the uplands, shielding coral reefs and sea grasses from silt and chemical tailings, due to commercial farming.

The proposed Blue-Green Revolution Project (BluGr Project) seeks to re-stock the population of mangroves in two coastal communities or barangays in the Philippines, through replanting financed by cash for work, with the new investments protected by insurance products. The proposed BluGr Project will have two main components: (a.) Cash for work to replant mangrove belts, targeting up to twelve coastal communities in the Philippines; as well as (b.) the design and provision of Natural Catastrophe (NatCat) Insurance Products including weather index-based insurance to protect mangroves against damages due to strong winds and typhoons. Low carbon activities that will complement with the mangrove replanting and support its proliferation, will be introduced and the investments and mangrove farmers, insured through life and credit-life insurance products.

What actions do you propose?

The overall aim of the project is to re-stock, rehabilitate, and protect mangroves in two separate communities in the Philippines. It will use cash for work to mobilize the participation of communities into the project activities. The replanting of mangroves along coast lands contribute to the rehabilitation of up to twelve (12) marine wetland sites, and shall serve as a pilot model for other communities across the Philippines. Fifty percent (50%) of project funds or EUR20,000 will be used to mobilize two target barangays for the replanting and caring of mangroves by cash for work. Fifty (50) Households shall be involved each in two separate areas, and shall work for 27 days, receiving a wage of P290.00 or EU4.55 per day, based on the daily wage rate for agricultural workers working outside of Metro Manila, prescribed by the Philippines Department of Labor - National Wages and Productivity Commission; with the days spread within 12 months.

The other 50% of funds will be used to undertake Financial Literacy (insurance) and Environmental Management Training for mangrove planters in three (3) batches for 2 separate barangays, as well as support the development of local policy through a training on drafting of barangay legislation that will protect, conserve and expand mangrove areas.

The Design of a NatCat Product, Life and Credit-Life Insurance shall be done by the GIZ-Pru Life UK “Microinsurance Development through Online Communities Project" (MicroComm). The proposed BluGr project shall organize a sector of mangrove farmers and will publish its progress, lessons learned and impact in the MicroComm online site It will also link with the GIZ Micro Disaster Risk Insurance for Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (Micro DRI) Project, including the Department of Trade and Industry, AXA Charter Ping An and the Cebuana Lhuillier Insurance Solutions.

A training on Financial Literacy (insurance), Environmental Management and Mangrove Farming shall be done in 3 batches in 2 separate barangays. This serves to explain the value and use of insurance in general, as well as the features, coverage and benefits of the NatCat, life and credit-life products, delivered in the local language using local context, to maximize understanding and appreciation of the buyers.

A Digital Literacy training on the use of the MicroComm Online portals shall be done prior to the selling of the microinsurance product/s, and shall be a counterpart of the GIZ MicroComm Project. As a sustainability feature, the proposed project shall provide “Training on Barangay Legislation development thru the formulation of Barangay Resolutions protecting Mangrove Belts” to sustain efforts and advocate the use of barangay resources.

The project shall engage manpower at a cost of EUR6,000 to manage the activities in Tacloban and Butuan Cities, and ensure project plans are delivered on time.

Who will take these actions?

The proposed project shall engage with the GIZ Regulatory Framework Promotion of Pro-Poor Insurance Markets in Asia on the development of natural catastrophe (NatCat) insurance for mangroves, as well as life and credit-life for mangrove farmers. It will partner with Local Government Units of Tacloban City in the Visayas Region, and Butuan City in the Mindanao Region, in the Philippines, as well as civil society organizations based in the areas.

Barangay officials shall be engaged to mobilize local communities. The proposed project shall work with Pru Life UK, a private insurer, through an existing Memorandum of Agreement with the GIZ Regulatory Framework Promotion of Pro-Poor Insurance Markets in Asia II Project (GIZ RFPI Asia II). AXA Charter Ping An, a Philippine non-life insurer will oversee the development and approval of the Natural Catastrophe insurance product

GIZ RFPI will work with the Philippines Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) in implementing the BluGr Project. The planned project shall partner with the GIZ Support to the Climate Change Commission Project, on the development of supportive national policy on climate change and mitigation. Civil Society Advocacy groups shall also be engaged to document and advocate policy gains, and future directions.

Where will these actions be taken?

This initiative shall be done in the Philippines, a developing country, a member of the Association of South East Asian Nations (ASEAN). Particularly, it will be implemented in Tacloban City in the Visayas Region, and Butuan City in Mindanao Region, Philippines, in their communities or barangays.

A replication of this approach can be done through a Developing Public-Private Partnership scheme ( among the Mutual Exchange Forum on Inclusive Insurance (MEFIN) member countries ( MEFIN is a collegial body composed of Insurance Regulators and Private Insurers in Indonesia, Mongolia, Nepal, Pakistan, the Philippines, Vietnam and Sri Lanka, all aiming to develop inclusive insurance markets through public-private dialogues, documentation of business models and provision of technical assistance.   

What are other key benefits?

This initiative will advocate the uses and value of mangroves in terms of environmental services. It will emphasize the importance of access to insurance as an option to manage risks affecting mangroves belts, brought by extreme weather events due to climate change. Lastly, it will jumpstart the local protection of mangroves through community level legislation, aiming to spread its benefits inter-municipality and province-wide in the long term.

What are the proposal’s costs?

Work and Financial Plan

  1. Cash for work targeting a coastal community to replant mangrove belts: EU13,146.19
  2. Design of Natural Catastrophe (NatCat) Product: Counterpart of GIZ MicroComm and GIZ Micro DRI Projects
  3. Financial Literacy (insurance); Environmental Management and Mangrove Farming Training: EU8,394.75 including travel cost worth EUR8,864.86, to monitor field activities, at 2 days per visit, for 11 months in two areas
  4. Digital Literacy: Training workshop on use of MicroComm Online portals, prior to selling: Counterpart of GIZ MicroComm Project
  5. Training on Policy development support to the community thru the formulation of Barangay Resolutions protecting Mangrove Belts: EU3,357.90
  6. Admin Cost (15% of total project cost): EU6,000.00
  7. Total Project Cost: EU39,763.70 at EUR1 = PHP59.561

Time line

The proposed initiative will engage with Barangay Councils in Tacloban and Butuan cities in the first 1-3 years of the project duration. It will provide cash for work to communities to replant mangroves as well as provide financial literacy on the importance of access to microinsurance. The proposed initiative will focus on the creation of legislation supporting the protection of replanted mangrove sites by declaring it as protected areas, to sustain the gains of the project. From year 4-10, beyond the project life, the training on Barangay legislation will focus on the allocation of funds for the sustainability of operations protecting the replanted mangroves.

Related proposals

The related initiatives are:

  1. : Works with Insurance Regulators and the Private Insurance Industry of seven partner countries on the development of microinsurance
  2. : works with Tacloban and Butuan Cities on the formation of online communities in support of access to financial literacy and microinsurance products
  3. : An initiative that will design index-based insurance products for micro, small and medium enterprises in the Philippines, against the effects of extreme weather events due to climate change


  1. Altenburg, T., Fischer, C., Huck, K., Kruip, A., Müller, S., Sörensen, S. (2017). Managing coastal ecosystems in the Philippines - What cash for work programmes can contribute. The German Development Institute / Deutsches Institut für Entwicklungspolitik.   
  2. Gilbert, A. Janssen, R. (1998). Use of environmental functions to communicate the values of a mangrove ecosystem under different management regimes. Ecological Economics. pp. 323-246.  
  3. Brander, L., Wagtendonk, A., et. al. (2012). Ecosystem service values for mangroves in Southeast Asia: A meta-analysis and value transfer application. Ecosystems Services. pp. 62-69. 
  4. Ronnback, P. (1999). The ecological basis for economic value of seafood production supported by mangrove ecosystems. Ecological Economics 29. pp. 235-252. 
  5. Walters, B. (1997). Human ecological questions for tropical restoration: experiences from planting native upland trees and mangroves in the Philippines. Forestry Ecology and Management 99. pp. 275-290.