PASS loans benefit 185,000 smallholder farmers

ABOUT 185,000 smallholder farmers have benefited from loans which were facilitated by the Private Agricultural Sector Support (PASS) for the past one year, a move that helped to uplift the level of agricultural production in the country.

PASS Managing Director Nicomed Bohay told the Daily News here yesterday that the farmers got access to the agricultural input loans from financial institutions thanks to PASS, saying the farmers received credits amounting to 101bn/- from banks collaborating with PASS.

The PASS Managing Director was speaking to the Daily News at the agro-trade fair at Mashujaa Grounds in Dodoma municipality in which his organisation took part. The four-day event organised by the National Economic Empowerment Council (NEEC) ended yesterday.

Mr Bohay pointed out that PASS had been supporting the farmers through provision of credit guarantee cover that was given to the collaborating financial institutions to top up inadequate collateral.

Speaking after visiting PASS pavilion, Iramba District Executive Director Lino Mwageni urged PASS to open an office in every region to reach out to more farmers. Sunflower growers in Iramba faced some challenges, he noted. PASS would help groups engaging in sunflower farming in Iramba to acquire their own sunflower oil factories, he hinted.

The Community Development Officer (CDO) of Geita Region, Mr Amani Madenge, said most farmers lacked collateral while seeking for agricultural input credits, urging PASS to extend services to Geita Region.

As Community Development Officer, Im going to raise awareness to farmers and community in general in Geita on services offered by PASS so that Geita farmers can benefit from the organisation, he said.

The event whose opening was graced by the Prime Minister Kassim Majaliwa last Tuesday brought together economic empowerment funds to support farmers and agriculture stakeholders to showcase their products and services.

The Premier directed the economic empowerment funds to publicise their activities to the public so that more people can benefit their services.

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