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MASLOC targets agriculture sector for loans

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The management of Microfinance and Small Loans Centre (MASLOC) has targeted increase in funding to the agricultural sector towards the expansion of food production and reduction of unemployment in the country, a recent MASLOC publication has revealed.

Economic activities that would qualify for the funding include production of food crops, agro-processing, poultry, marketing of foodstuffs such as maize, yams, tomatoes, local rice, cold-storage and livestock.

Others are bee-keeping, mushroom cultivation, snails, grasscutter and rabbit rearing, offshore and inland fishing, fish farming, basketry, agricultural machinery and farm inputs.

Management of MASLOC has launched the eight-page brochure expected to be made public soon to increase public knowledge about its operations and support to the agricultural sector.

According to the publication, targeted beneficiaries would include the productive poor and the vulnerable in society engaged in micro and small scale businesses.

They are eligible for loans re-payable within 12 months at a comparatively low interest rate.

Currently, loans disbursed at the centre include micro-credit or group loans, small loans, and wholesale lending to microfinance institutions for on-lending to the productive poor.

Under the micro-credit scheme, the main beneficiaries are groups or cooperative societies, each consisting of a minimum of five and a maximum of 25 members.

No tangible security is required from applicants apart from the group solidarity guarantee.

In the case of small or individual loan scheme, the publication indicated that a loan beneficiary must provide an acceptable security, in addition to a personal guarantor who must be in a position to redeem the loan in case of default.

With reference to the wholesale lending, management of MASLOC grants loans to Microfinance Institutions (MFIs) for on-lending to small and micro businesses.

MASLOC was established in 2006 by Government as a microfinance apex body to provide, manage and regulate approved funds for microfinance and small scale credit, loan schemes and programmes.

The publication stated that it was the goal of management to reach out to many clients in the informal sector who were normally excluded from mainstream banking and were unable to access loans and credit from the formal banking sector.

It said the main priority target groups of the intervention were women, the physically challenged (people living with disabilities), the youth as well as the productive poor, who were operators of small and medium scale economic or income generating activities.

The publication indicated that MASLOC aimed at developing the centre into a viable, self sustaining body for the effective and efficient disbursement, management and recovery of microfinance and small loans to the poor and vulnerable in society to reduce poverty and create employment and wealth.

Source: GNA

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One comment

  1. thus grasscutter farmers qualify for masloc loans. i need loan for my grasscutter business, i have my house to use as security