ODB to pro­vide loans for agri­cul­tural sec­tor

The loans for farm­ers will help growth in agri­cul­tural pro­duc­tion and re­duce im­ports of food prod­ucts.

Times of Oman - - MARKET - Times News Ser­vice

MUSCAT: Oman De­vel­op­ment Bank (ODB) is fo­cus­ing on pro­vid­ing agri­cul­tural loans to farm­ers to sup­port a gov­ern­ment ini­tia­tive to strengthen food se­cu­rity.

The loan for farm­ers will help achieve self-suf­fi­ciency to main­tain agri­cul­ture crops and live­stock, and help es­tab­lish and sus­tain agri­cul­ture with value ad­di­tion and growth in pro­duc­tion, said a bank re­lease.

ODB, in co­op­er­a­tion with the Min­istry of Agri­cul­ture and Fish­eries, has or­gan­ised a sem­i­nar on the bank’s role in in­vest­ing on de­vel­op­ing agri­cul­ture.

Mounir bin Salem Al Hanaa’y, man­ager, Depart­ment of Sea- sonal Loans, pre­sented a pa­per on the sea­sonal agri­cul­tural loans (Mawsimi) pro­vided by the bank. The bank pro­vides sub­sidised de­vel­op­men­tal loans for the agri­cul­tural sec­tor in many fields, which in­clude es­tab­lish­ing new farms, ir­ri­ga­tion sys­tems, ex­pan­sion and de­vel­op­ment of farms; de­vel­op­ing and main­tain­ing farms, drilling wells for agri­cul­tural pur­poses and bee­keep­ing.

Al Hanaa’y also pointed out that the bank pro­vides sea­sonal loans to fund sea­sonal crops, which have a short cul­ti­va­tion pe­riod with a fixed pro­duc­tive cy­cle.

He fur­ther said the bank has fixed a max­i­mum limit for sea­sonal loan at OMR50,000 and can be utilised for cul­ti­vat­ing vegetables and fruits, in­clud­ing chilli, cu­cum­ber, egg­plant, wa­ter­melon, melon, to­ma­toes, pota­toes, cab­bage and wheat.

Ad­van­tages

Agri­cul­tural loans pro­vided by ODB of­fer sev­eral ad­van­tages over other loans as it has sim­ple pro­ce­dures to get ap­proval and the fund is dis­bursed di­rectly to the owner of the agri­cul­tural land.

For ap­ply­ing the loan, there is no need to present quo­ta­tions from prod­uct sup­pli­ers as only the area to be cul­ti­vated, the value of the agri­cul­tural pro­duce, and the agri­cul­tural land will be taken into con­sid­er­a­tion.

Loan el­i­gi­bil­ity is es­ti­mated through the cost of cul­ti­va­tion for each crop or each acre of the farmed crops and it cov­ers 70 per cent of the to­tal cost, with a re­pay­ment pe­riod of nine months.

In the first phase, seventy per cent of the sanc­tioned amount will be dis­bursed im­me­di­ately af­ter sign­ing the con­tract and the rest af­ter the first visit to the projects, to make sure that all the pro­duc­tion re­quire­ments are com­plied.

– Sup­plied pic­ture

AGRO FI­NANCE: The bank has fixed a max­i­mum limit for sea­sonal loans at OMR50,000 and can be utilised for cul­ti­vat­ing vegetables and fruits.

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