JELEBU, Dec 30 — The Agriculture and Food Industries Ministry (MAFI) will allocate RM100 million under the Agro Family Revival Fund to ease the burden of agro-food entrepreneurs who have been affected by the recent floods.
Minister Datuk Seri Ronald Kiandee said the fund which is part of the RM4.2 billion allocated to the ministry under Budget 2021, would soon be distributed to those involved through various departments such as the Fisheries, Veterinary and Agriculture departments.
It is hoped that the aid which would be given in the form of agricultural and livestock inputs, equipment such as machinery, storage tanks and Agrobank funds would be able to ease the burden of those affected and help to revive the country’s agro-food sector.
“The floods have caused massive damage and issues over food supply and food security are among MAFI’s priority and this is a proactive step taken by MAFI.
“So the allocation will be used to rebuild the sector, help young agropreneurs who have been affected as well as promote community programmes, organic agriculture and agro-tourism being managed by MAFI,” he told reporters today after inspecting a farm which had been hit by the recent floods.
He said the country’s agro-food sector has so far recorded losses of RM63 million involving 4,700 operators, following the floods and the number is expected to increase based on a comprehensive data supplied by departments and agencies under MAFI.
However, Ronald assured that the country still has sufficient food supply and is prepared to increase import quotas, especially for rice supply to meet the needs of the people in the event of a food shortage.
“So far, the country is not faced with a food shortage crisis and MAFI is monitoring the effects of the floods on the supply of rice, vegetables and meat and we will ensure that those affected by the floods would be able to proceed with their businesses,” he said.
In addition, he said the agro-food sector would also benefit from the Malaysian Family Flood Assistance worth RM1.4 billion and MAFI would see to the aid coordination to ensure flood victims under the sector received the appropriate assistance. — Bernama