The Comprehensive Agreement on Social and Economic Reforms (CASER) is a proposed agreement between the Philippine government and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP). The aim of this agreement is to address the social and economic issues that have plagued the country for decades through structural reforms.
The proposed agreement is comprehensive because it seeks to address a wide range of issues such as rural development, agrarian reform, national industrialization, environmental protection, social services, and workers` rights. The agreement also aims to promote the welfare of marginalized sectors such as peasants, workers, women, and indigenous peoples.
The CASER was first proposed in 1998 but negotiations between the government and the NDFP were repeatedly stalled due to various reasons such as disagreements over the ceasefire, human rights violations, and terrorism.
In December 2017, the parties agreed to a unilateral ceasefire and resumed peace talks in Oslo, Norway. However, talks were again suspended in June 2018 due to disagreements over the release of political prisoners.
The CASER document, which spans over 80 pages, is available in PDF form. It includes the proposed framework for implementing reforms in various sectors, the mechanisms for monitoring and assessing the implementation, and the strategies for financing the reforms.
One of the key proposals in the CASER is the establishment of a People`s Mining Corporation which will replace the current Mining Act of 1995. The new corporation will prioritize the welfare of the affected communities and promote sustainable mining practices.
Another proposal is the implementation of genuine agrarian reform which includes the distribution of land to landless farmers, the support for agricultural production, and the protection of the rights of agricultural workers.
The CASER also seeks to promote national industrialization by developing the manufacturing sector and promoting local industries. This will create more jobs and provide more opportunities for Filipinos.
Overall, the Comprehensive Agreement on Social and Economic Reforms is a crucial step towards addressing the longstanding social and economic issues in the Philippines. The proposed reforms will promote inclusive growth, reduce poverty, and empower marginalized sectors. However, the agreement remains a proposal until both parties can fully agree on its terms and implement it effectively.