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RM100 MLN approved to help smallholders

Deputy Chief Minister and Minister of Modernisation of Agriculture, Native Land and Regional Development Datuk Amar Douglas Uggas Embas (pic) said the RM100 million fund which was approved by the
Chief Minister as seed capital as one of the alternatives and innovative ways of how the State Government under the leadership of Datuk Amar Abang Johari Tun Openg created a system to assist the smallholders in Sarawak.
“We hope that with this new capital we will be able to uplift the livelihood and not only uplifting their livelihood but bringing them into a new agriculture involving using even digital economy.
“This is the new area for them and the RM100 million Venture Capital seed fund is supposed to be spent next year,” he disclosed to the media after delivering his welcoming address at the Workshop on Venture Capital organised by Ministry of Modernisation of Agriculture, Native Land & Regional Development Sarawak and supported by Sarawak Development Institute (SDI) at Hilton Kuching yesterday.
The presenter at the workshop was Dr. Prasun Kumar Das, Secretary-General, Asia Pacific Rural and Agricultural Credit Association, Bangkok, Thailand who briefed the participants of the workshop on Building Venture Capital to Promote Technology Adoption and Agribusiness Promotion in the Sarawak.
“Today, we have the speaker in his paper presenting various models that he had experienced on, and we are inviting senior officers from various departments and agencies with the hope that by the end of the day we will have some framework on how this RM100 million can be implemented later on,” Uggah said.
“Eventually, we hope to be able to create a community-based enterprises involving the rural people and that eventually they will be able to come together and form their own management and run this enterprise on cooperative basis and so on so forth but what is important is they are running it
themselves, planning the projects and working with the private sector and that what we hope. And this project is to be profitable and beneficial to the farmers,” he said.
Uggah said the details on how to manage the Venture Capital seed fund is yet to be worked out. But what is clear as indicated by the presenter is we must have the standard operating procedures and  of how to manage this fund.
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