Current and aspiring farmers in communal areas eligible for Agribank’s loans
Farmers in communal areas are also eligible for Agribank’s loan products, contrary to the belief that farmers in communal areas do not qualify, Agribank’ss spokesperson, Fillemon Nangonya said in a statement.
“The truth is, there are several facilities under which communal farmers can be financed by Agribank. The Emerging Retail Financing Product (ERFP) is one of such facilities,” he added.
Nangonya said this facility was developed in response to the market demand for collateral free products, especially for the previously disadvantaged local farmers.
“Under this facility, loans are granted on the basis that successful applicants will undergo a mandatory training program on the production, management and marketing of commodities, for which the loan is being requested. Additionally, a farmer will be attached to a Bank approved mentor for the duration of the loan facility,” he added.
According to Nangonya, for a farmer to be considered under this product, such a farmer should be a full-time communal farmer, and should have an authorisation letter by the traditional authority on the piece of land where farming is to take place. “In case of livestock farmers, one should also have his/her own brand mark from the Meat Board of Namibia.”
Nangonya said the ERFP is not the only product available for communal farmers. The women and youth loan scheme is another avenue through which communal farmers, specifically women of all age groups and men under the age of 35, can be financed by Agribank.
“Similarly, the no-collateral loan facility is another product of the Bank that provide financing access to salaried part-time communal farmers. Repayment of the no-collateral loans is made through monthly payroll deductions, provided that there is a payroll deduction agreement between an applicant’s employer and Agribank, at an interest rate of 9% per annum,” he explained.
Meanwhile, he said that communal farmers interested in Agribank products should therefore approach their nearest Agribank offices for discussion on how Agribank can assist them, to realise their full farming potential.
“Agribank has the mandate to promote growth and development of agriculture, through the provision of affordable, inclusive and innovative financing solutions. The public is also hereby informed that applications can also be made online via the Bank’s website at www.agribank.com.na,” he concluded.