Farmers do not need to prove Covid-19 impact to apply for Agribank’s Covid-19 response funding
Agribank announced this week that eligible farmers who are impacted by the destructive lockdown can start applying as from Monday 21 September for production loans as part of the bank’s Covid-19 relief and stimulus package announced earlier this year.
The first phase of the financing programme started at the beginning of June while the bank still scouted for further funding to implement the stimulus phase. In the meantime, the Ministry of Finance issued a loan guarantee for Agribank to borrow N$200 million for onlending to qualifying farmers.
Agribank Chief Executive, Sakaria Nghikembua said farmers can submit their applications for stimulus production loans starting next week. “These loans are intended to provide stimulus to the economy by supporting the achievement of optimal production levels. They are also intended to enhance resilience through the creation of additional income streams for farmers,” he said.
Both existing and new clients will be considered for this funding. Although the loans are made available as part of the bank’s Covid-19 response, the bank advised that clients do not need to prove any Covid-19 impact but must be in good standing with respect to their existing loan accounts.
The bank said its usual credit assessment process will apply and loans will be granted at the normal product interest rates. It also advised that it offers a range of existing products to support agricultural production.
Nghikembua advised that stimulus loans include loans for production inputs or for infrastructure that supports production. Examples include loans for cropping facilities, livestock re-stocking, charcoal production, poultry and farm infrastructure improvement that directly supports production.