PASS to provide 1,267,800 loans to agribusiness entrepreneurs by 2022

01Aug 2020
The Guardian Reporter
Dar es Salaam
The Guardian
PASS to provide 1,267,800 loans to agribusiness entrepreneurs by 2022

THE Private Agricultural Sector Support (PASS) is envisioned to provide at least 1,267,800 loans to agribusiness entrepreneurs by 2022 in an initiative aimed to support the government’s development agenda.

In a statement issued by PASS Managing Director, Nicomed Bohay said that the target is part of the organisation’s strategic plan (2018-2022).

In the four-year plan, PASS is determined to ensure increased employment and income opportunities for Tanzania population.

It also targets to increase in annual guarantee commitments from 126bn/- in 2018 to 184bn/- in 2022 as well as digitalising PASS services and products, promotion of leasing finance in Tanzania, build a strong green profile and reach 50 percent female clients.

“Throughout our work, we have realised impressive productivity gains in our supported projects in various sub-sectors including coffee, tea, paddy, maize, sunflower, sugar cane, livestock, fishing, mechanisation, input trading and agro processing,” Bohay said in a statement.

According to him, in the year 2019 PASS supported loans in crop production, livestock, farm mechanisation, agro processing, crop trading, input trading, and transportation. The support created thousands of new jobs in rural areas where farmers, agro - pastoralists, agribusiness companies, women and farmer groups benefited.

Focus for the year 2020 onwards is to have special products targeting disadvantaged groups such as youth and women empowerment, he said.

Through its Agribusiness Innovation Centre (AIC) PASS will enhance agro processing in the country aiming at increasing value addition to agricultural products.

PASS has been participating in “Nane Nane” exhibitions since year 2010. Through this participation in “Nane Nane” and publication of The Agribusiness Magazine it has increased awareness to agribusiness entrepreneurs and general stakeholders on its services. It has also provided services during the exhibition through zonal participation. This has improved our outreach throughout the country. This year PASS is participating in the exhibitions in Simiyu, Morogoro and Mbeya.

According to BOT, out of 8,285,831 loans given by the banking industry to the country’s agricultural sector between the years 2013 to November 2019, a total of 956,298 loans were PASS guaranteed.

Of the 7 years under scrutiny, BOT puts 2018 as the year that saw PASS give the highest guarantees standing at 217,951 out of 952,884 loans provided by the entire banking sector in the country, representing 23 per cent of the loans given.

“Because of the increasing demand for PASS’ services, and the relevance of existing services offered by PASS, We continue to prioritise on our strong foundation to further expand the provision of existing Business Development Services and Financial Services to significantly improve the outreach to agribusiness entrepreneurs,” Bohay said, noting;

“PASS is well positioned to continuously search for and develop new, innovative products and partnerships that can further expand PASS’ outreach and facilitate access to finance in the agricultural and agribusiness sector.

“In order to ensure many people, benefit from our services, we are currently embracing rapid development in the ICT connectivity to ensure efficiency of our services.”

For instance, he said: “PASS plans to extend its credit guarantees through the digital platforms for purposes of re-risking lending by both banks and Mobile Network Operators. This means that PASS ‘clients will now be able to access loans guaranteed by PASS through mobile money.”

According to him, for effective and widespread reach, PASS is also in the process of establishing a state-of-the-art call centre as well as a knowledge hub that will enable us meet our customer demands faster as well as connect them with other relevant services.

“As a Trust, we have also established a leasing company called- The PASS Leasing Company that will enable agricultural entrepreneurs access farm machineries and equipment for agricultural mechanisation, industrial agro processing and irrigation equipment.”