Gov’t allots P2-B to fund youth agricultural entrepreneurship programs

The Department of Agriculture (DA) has approved an initial PHP2 billion to fund two lending programs for young entrepreneurs to start their own agricultural enterprise.

In media release on Thursday, Agriculture Secretary William Dar said the DA through the Agricultural Credit Policy Council (DA-ACPC) would implement the agri-entrepreneurship programs for the youth, namely the Young Agripreneurs Loan Program (YALP), and Micro and Small Agribusiness Loan Program (MSALP) — with an initial budget of PHP1 billion each.

“This is our way to attract the younger generation of Filipinos to be key players in attaining our vision of a food-secure Philippines with prosperous farmers and fishers,” Dar said.

“We have to replace aging farmers with younger blood — our Pinoy millennials — who are the future of Philippine agriculture,” he added.

Under the YALP, agri-fishery graduates and young hobbyists aged 18 to 30 years old are eligible to avail of its loans. They can borrow start-up funds of up to PHP500,000, with zero interest, payable in five years.

Meanwhile, for the MSALP, agripreneurs can borrow working capital or for fixed asset acquisition, from PHP300,000 up to PHP15 million, for micro and small enterprises.

Both programs will be officially launched before the end of January.

“This has been one of my advocacies. Let us give our Filipino millennials the means to be part of our journey towards agricultural modernization and industrialization,” Dar said.