THE WAY FORWARD │ Level Up Philippine Agriculture!

DA offers youth, agripreneurs affordable start-up loans

Author: DA Communications Group | 2 September 2020

Agriculture Secretary William Dar urges the youth and budding agriculture entrepreneurs (agripreneurs) to actively take part in agriculture and fisheries by availing of several financial and technical assistance offered by the Duterte administration through the Department of Agriculture (DA).

One of which is the “Kapital Access for Young Agripreneurs” or KAYA loan program.

“The KAYA targets the youth because we acknowledge that they can be key players in ensuring affordability and availability of food supply,” said Secretary Dar during a recent virtual launch of the Agriculture Students Association of the Philippines (ASAP) Youth.

Administered by the DA’s Agricultural Credit and Policy Council (ACPC), KAYA aims to finance the capital requirements of start-up or existing farm or fishery businesses, offering uncollateralized loans up to P500,000 at zero interest and payable up to five years. Eligible borrowers must be 18-30 years old, and graduate of formal or non-formal schooling.

Aside from KAYA, secretary Dar also promoted Mentoring and Attracting the Youth in Agribusiness (MAYA), a six-month internship program aimed at developing a competent, skilled, and employment-ready young workforce.

Another is the Business Incubation in Agriculture (BIAG), a platform where the DA assists business incubators, micro and small enterprises (MSEs), and farmers’ cooperatives and associations (FCAs) for their start-up operations.

Further, he shared the various DA training, scholarship, and e-extension programs that the youth and agripreneurs can avail of.

“We need to harness the potential and strength of the youth in our journey to making Philippine agriculture modern, industrialized and competitive,” said the DA chief.

“This has now become a competition among nations. We need to increase our efforts in taking care of agriculture and we need the younger generation to take the lead,” he added.

During the launch of ASAP Youth, Senator Francis Pangilinan supported Secretary Dar’s call on the youth to engage in agriculture.

He said the country will not attain food security if a new generation of Filipinos does not want to go into farming, and thus would lead to hunger and poverty.

The ASAP is composed of agriculture students from 11 universities and colleges all over the country. It is committed to promoting agriculture among the youth, highlighting the importance of farmers in national food security, and developing and enhancing the skills of its members as future leaders of the country’s agriculture industry. ### (DA-ACPC, StratComms)

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