PASS Trust to empower more Tanzanians in agribusiness

14Jul 2020
By Guardian Reporter
The Guardian
PASS Trust to empower more Tanzanians in agribusiness

​​​​​​​THE agribusiness sector in the country is set for a major boost from the Private Agricultural Sector Support Trust through the trust’s credit guarantee scheme. 

Nicomed Bohay, PASS managing director.

For the last three weeks, the Trust has been engaging stakeholders throughout the country while engaging with leaders on the appropriate ways of further increasing the number of agribusiness entrepreneurs who wish to access financial credit but are unable due to lack of collateral.

“Since January 2020 to March 2020, we have been able to guarantee loans worth 71.5bn/- with hopes that agribusiness entrepreneurs will engage more and increase agricultural production,” said Nicomed Bohay, PASS managing director when speaking at one of the engagement forums in Mbeya Region.

Since inception in 2000, PASS has continued to significantly contribute towards the changing narrative of Tanzania’s agricultural Finance landscape, by assisting agricultural entrepreneurs to feasibly and profitably borrow from commercial financial institutions, for purposes of improving their Agri businesses. Currently, PASS works with 16 financial institutions that include banks spread across Tanzania, by linking agribusinesses entrepreneurs with bankable business plans and providing partial credit guarantee cover with the aim of topping up inadequate collateral for clients.

To its clients, PASS offers business development services such as feasibility studies, supports development of business plans and conduct training or organisation of farmer groups.

Majorly, PASS offers a partial credit guarantee cover to collaborating banks as a means of topping up inadequate collateral to enable clients get financing. PASS provides banks with a 60 per cent guarantee (up to 80 per cent for women) of the loan amount. Beneficiaries can be individuals (SMEs or farmers) or farmers groups.

Speaking in Mbeya during a stakeholders meeting in the region, Mbeya Regional Commissioner Albert Chalamila led a group of leaders in the region in hailing PASS Trust work of guaranteeing farmers credit saying this has enabled many farmers access finances and engage in meaningful agriculture.

“I call upon agribusiness entrepreneurs in this region particularly, to take advantage of PASS Services to improve their lives. PASS has made it easy for everyone including youths to engage in agribusiness and create employment,” said Chalamila.

Njombe District Commissioner Ruth Msafiri gave a stern warning to agricultural officers in the region to take serious their work and engage with farmers so that they can benefit from services such as PASS adding that lack of coordination was affecting service delivery in the agricultural sector in the district.

“Should we wait for PASS Trust to come and bring us together to tell us about these opportunities?” Posed Msafiri.

The DC acknowledged many PASS beneficiaries who were present and urged others to utilise PASS products to their advantage.

This week, PASS Trust has pitched camp in the Southern Zone with stakeholder meetings planned for Mtwara, Lindi, Masasi, Tunduru, Songea and Mbinga.

“As an agribusiness entrepreneur, ours is to link you with finances so that you can thrive and improve your business. Agribusiness entrepreneurs have no reason of failing in business. We are here as a link to ensure that even those who are considered uncreditworthy due to lack of collateral, get a chance to access the funds,” said Bohay.

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