Nearly 600 million USD disbursed in support of agroforestry aquatic sectors


Nearly 600 million USD disbursed in support of agroforestry, aquatic sectors hinh anh 1

A farmer shows off his coffee harvest in the central highland province of Lam Dong. (Photo: VNA)

More than 15 trillion VND (597 million USD) has been disbursed under a credit scheme to support Vietnamese agroforestry and aquatic sectors since July last year, heard participants at a recent conference to discuss measures on maintaining Vietnam’s key agricultural exports.

Dao Minh Tu, Deputy Governor of the State Bank of Vietnam (SBV), said the entire amount had been disbursed successfully, nearly two months before the deadline of the end of June 2024.

He said the loans, with interest rates lower than market rates by 1-2% annually, were designed to help the sectors cope with and overcome difficulties experienced during this turbulent period.

He said the central bank is willing to increase the amount to over 30 trillion VND if there is strong demand within the sectors. According to a report by the central bank, accumulated funds of over 17.5 trillion VND have been disbursed so far among 6,500 borrowers.

Among these, loans intended for agroforestry have reached 4.45 trillion VND, or 25.7%, while loans intended for the aquatic sector have reached over 13 trillion VND, or 74.3% of the total, with the lion’s share going to business borrowers at 83% of the total amount.

Nguyen Hoai Nam, Secretary-General of the Vietnam Association of Seafood Exporters and Producers (VASEP), said the credit scheme has been a welcome boost, relieving a lot of financial pressure on businesses.

With the sectors’ prospects for the remainder of the year looking increasingly bright, he said the amount should be increased to 30 trillion VND to allow businesses and farmers to ramp up investment in expanding production, getting ready for market rebound.

However, several participants voiced concerns over the support scheme’s accessibility as businesses have reported certain banks’ unwillingness to take part.

In a recent survey conducted by VASEP, businesses and farmers are especially interested in low-interest loans in both US dollar and Vietnamese dong, with banks implementing a more streamlined loaning process.

“The credit ratio for export companies is expected to increase to over half of the funds in the remaining months of 2024, almost double the amount disbursed to them so far,” said a VASEP representative.

Trinh Duc Kien, Deputy Director of a wood export company, said many firms in the industry have been facing significant pressure to repay previous loans.

“In addition to lower rates, businesses also look forward to longer terms to repay their borrowings,” he said. Kien also called for greater support to be provided to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

Phung Thi Binh, Deputy Director-General of Agribank, said the bank has experienced some difficulties during the implementation of the support scheme, including issues in managing cash flow and monitoring invoices by borrowers.

The central bank’s deputy governor said it is in businesses’ interest to work together with banks to work out solutions to preventing capital loss. Regarding a common request by businesses to extend borrowing terms, he said the decision falls under the banks’ jurisdiction and discretion, but banks must do all they can to support businesses./.


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