GUA MUSANG, July 25 — The South Kelantan Agropolitan Project in Rantau Manis near here, introduced 18 years ago at a cost of RM240 million, has helped improve the income of the hardcore poor in the state.
Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Economy) Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamed said, since the project was implemented in 2009, it has benefited 600 participants and raised their family’s living standards.
The government, through the East Coast Economic Region Development Council (ECERDC), helped the participants increase their income, which initially was only RM500.
“ECERDC has allowed them (participants) to seek additional income elsewhere as they are not obligated to work only under this project,” he told a press conference after a visit to the South Kelantan Agropolitan Office here, today.
Mustapa said most of the participants’ average income increased by RM1,000 to RM1,500 per month. adding that some monthly household incomes had hit RM2,300.
“According to plans by ECERDC, by the end of next year, the Rantau Manis Agropolitan Project will be handed over fully to the South Kelantan Development Authority (Kesedar) for further development,” he said.
He said with the takeover from 2022 onwards, Kesedar would find the best model to ensure sustainability of the project.
The ECERDC human capital development programme has so far benefited 24,458 people in the state, most of whom are from the B40 group. — Bernama