SERIAN: The government through the Malaysian Palm Oil Board (MPOB) will allocate RM7, 000 per hectare to smallholders for them to participate in the replanting and new planting of oil palms.
Plantation Industries and Commodities Minister Tan Sri Bernard Dompok said the assistance was to increase the country’s palm oil production as it has been identified as one of the National Key Economic Areas (NKEA.
Dompok said the Palm Replanting Scheme for Small Farmers (TSSPK) includes the chopping down of palm trees older than 25 years old and those no longer productive.
Under TSSPK, the government also provided smallholding maintenance assistance (CPC) of RM500 per month for two years to successful applicants.
In addition to increasing oil palm production, TSSPK also helped to open new land for small scale farmers.
“We want to encourage small scale farmers in Sarawak and Sabah to go into the new planting and replanting scheme.”
This is the reason why the government provides assistance of RM7, 000 per hectare to cover costs for fertilisers, insecticides, weed killers and more,” he said.
He was speaking to reporters after officiating the ‘Pemimpin Bersama Pekebun Kecil Sawit’ at Ranchan Recreation Park here yesterday.
Also present were Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs who is also Serian MP Datuk Richard Riot, and MPOB’s Licensing and Enforcement Division director Adzmi Hassan.
According to Dompok, Sarawak has recorded a total of 10,417 small scale farmers for oil palm plantations with an area of 58,800 hectares.
Thus, he urged them to increase productivity to enhance their production of palm oil.
At the same time Dompok said the ministry was trying to get more funds for other cash crops like pepper and cocoa.
For pepper he said the state is the highest producer of black pepper, which is more than 90 per cent of national production in the pepper industry.
While for the cultivation of cocoa, he said at one time there were more than 200,000 hectares, now it had declined to only 20,000 hectares.