KUALA LUMPUR, April 2 — The Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security (KPKM) is committed to encouraging greater youth participation in agriculture by promoting the adoption of modern technologies like smart farming and drones.

Deputy Minister Datuk Arthur Joseph Kurup stated that this initiative is also aimed at decreasing the nation’s dependence on foreign labour in the agricultural industry.

“KPKM has several initiatives and assistance programmes to attract more youths to venture into agriculture. We provide courses up to diploma level and offer various aids, incentives, and organise numerous programmes such as the Young Agropreneur Grant and others,” he said during a question-and-answer session in Dewan Negara today.

He was addressing a query from Senator Abdul Nasir Idris, who sought information about the government’s initiatives to lessen dependence on foreign labour in agriculture and strategies to foster local interest in the sector.

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Arthur also listed other initiatives, including providing marketing platforms for agricultural products, namely the Contract Farm Marketing Service Programme, the Agro Madani Sales Programme, and other marketing outlets such as farmers’ markets, permanent farmers’ markets, and Agro Bazaars.

“We also offer financing facilities and grants to assist local entrepreneurs in the livestock and fisheries sectors.

“We provide financing facilities to modernise marketing strategies to boost agricultural income and productivity to expand agricultural production capacity. These include agri-food financing, Young Agropreneur Grants, and High Impact Product Matching Grants,” he explained. — Bernama

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