Azmin: Agriculture microfinance promotes growth, food security

Economic Affairs Minister Datuk Seri Azmin Ali speaks to reporters during the Prime Minister’s Raya Open House at Seri Perdana in Putrajaya June 5, 2019. — Picture by Mukhriz Hazim
Economic Affairs Minister Datuk Seri Azmin Ali speaks to reporters during the Prime Minister’s Raya Open House at Seri Perdana in Putrajaya June 5, 2019. — Picture by Mukhriz Hazim

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 28 — Micro-financing offered to Bottom 40 (B40) micro-entrepreneurs in the agricultural sector will have a multiplier effect, promoting economic growth and the nation’s food security, says Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali.

The Economic Affairs Minister said micro-financing provides a brighter future for the agriculture sector, making it a more viable and lucrative career option for the younger generation.

“The micro-financing initiative can free agriculture from traditional low-value economic activities.

“This noble effort is in line with the sustainability goal outlined in the Shared Prosperity Vision 2030, whose objectives include narrowing the regional income gap and raising rural productivity including for the agricultural sector,” he said.

Azmin was speaking at the signing of a strategic partnership between Petroliam Nasional Bhd (Petronas) and Agrobank here today.

Under the partnership, Agrobank will offer micro-financing worth RM100 million, provided by Petronas over a five-year period, to B40 micro-entrepreneurs in the agricultural sector.

Azmin said the strategic collaboration has the potential to initiate a paradigm shift in the agricultural sector, which until now has been associated with poverty.

He also expressed confidence that the enhancement of the capabilities of the B40 target group could help them become more independent and raise their incomes, enabling them to move up into the middle 40 per cent (M40) income group.

“An effective and efficient agricultural micro-financing programme would benefit some 90,000 participants from the B40 communities during its implementation period.

“This will enhance the socio-economic wellbeing, quality of life and business literacy of the B40 group,” he added. — Bernama

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