KUALA LUMPUR, June 8 — Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) involved in the agrofood sector affected by the movement control order (MCO) can cover their operating cost through the Microcredit Financing Scheme under Agrobank, worth RM350 million at an interest rate of only 3.5 per cent.
Agriculture and Food Industry Minister Datuk Seri Ronald Kiandee said this would provide more opportunities for entrepreneurs to recover their working capital to restart their businesses.
“The maximum financing amount of RM50,000 with a repayment period up to five years is done to avoid burdening agrofood entrepreneurs,” he said in a statement today.
He added that the scheme was also to encourage new entrepreneurs to venture into the sector as a startup capital while also helping existing entrepreneurs, especially farmers market, fisherman’s market and morning market traders to restart their businesses after the MCO period.
On Friday, Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin announced the government’s RM350 million allocation through the Agrofood Fund loan facility to ensure the sustainability of agricultural and commodity entrepreneurs in the agriculture and food sectors under the National Economic Recovery Plan (Penjana).
Meanwhile, Kiandee said the ministry would continue to cooperate with leading agencies and selected e-commerce platforms to activate the e-commerce campaign initiative under Penjana.
He said the ministry encouraged agrofood entrepreneurs to utilise e-commerce as an effective marketing platform to penetrate local and global markets in the future.
“The ministry is prepared and will work together with leading agencies and selected e-commerce platforms to offer onboarding training, provide sales subsidies and sales support services to ensure target groups received the benefits,” he said.
Kiandee said the ministry was working with several e-commerce platforms to enable farmers to market their agricultural products in bulk, among which are Ourshop Airasia, Dropee and Farm2Table.
He added that the latest focus on the Farm to Business market segment involved the matching of agricultural producers and entrepreneurs under the Federal Agricultural Marketing Authority (FAMA), Fisheries Development Authority of Malaysia (LKIM), Farmers’ Organisation Authority (LPP) and Department of Agriculture. — Bernama