KOTA KINABALU (Jan 18): Agrobank has allocated RM10 million as financing facility for the Young Agropreneur programme in Sabah.
Assistant Agriculture and Food Security Minister Chan Foong Hin said that this was in line with the focus outlined for the region which is to encourage urban farming, high-technology farming and turn agriculture as the career of choice for youths in the future.
Chan said that Agrobank is synonymous with the agriculture and food security sector especially in providing facilities and services in finance that are holistic for the agro community and those who are unserved and undeserved in Malaysia.
The services rendered by Agrobank is not limited to financing to driving the agro-food sector but also covers consumer products such as deposit, takaful, will and others, he said at the launch of the Chinese New Year Huat Ah campaign held at Sutera Harbour near here on Wednesday.
“Through deposit, it is among Agrobank’s initiatives to inculcate the culture of saving among all, particularly the unserved and undeserved. This is because they are among the group that is easily affected by any impacts from economic uncertainty. Agrobank always introduces various campaigns to encourage the culture of saving among its clients,” he said.
He added that this Agrobank’s commitment is in line with his ministry’s objective which is to help agropreneurs develop their agriculture field and also to encourage and support the SME (small and medium enterprises) and B40 to be prepared to face the coming days through the deposit savings initiative available.
“Growth in agriculture activities is important for the nation’s agriculture sector especially in raising food security in Malaysia. The government always prepares various forms of aids and incentives to the public who are interested to become agropreneurs and develop agriculture and food industry-based businesses. This is one of the ministry’s efforts to raise the self sufficiency level and subsequently increase the food supply stability guarantee,” he said.
Chan also said that his ministry or MAFS is also drafting the strategic development plan that will increase efforts to raise the nation’s food security and avoid the occurrence of food crisis.
“We will also continue the effort to ensure the worries of the Malaysian people on food supply is overcome through efforts that are conducted by agencies under MAFS.
“MAFS will also continue helping agropreneurs out there. But this effort must be carried out together and not merely dependent on the efforts of the government. Explore the opportunities available to develop this sector and improve the level of socioeconomy for the self and the surrounding community,” he said.
“Among others, the country’s agro-food policy’s implementation (DAN) 2.0 in the near future will continue to contribute towards strengthening the nation’s food system particularly in strengthening the industry and network in food supply so that they will continue to be resilient in facing any crisis in the future,” he said.
In his speech, Chan also said that Agrobank has taken one more proactive step by introducing the Huat Ah campaign which is an initiative to ensure clients deposit their money at Agrobank to increase returns through the Extravaganza FRIA-i campaign which gives a profit of about 4.25 percent within a period of 12 months.