PM challenges TADB to be innovative in financial services 

PRIME Minister Kassim Majaliwa has advised the Tanzania Agricultural Development Bank (TADB) to continue coming up with innovative products and services that support farmers’ efforts to boost agriculture productivity.

The agricultural bank recently revised its Smallholder Credit Guarantee Scheme (SCGS) to allow farmers seeking loans to be guaranteed up to 70 per cent from the previous 50 per cent.

“The government is aware of the great job that TADB is doing to transform the agricultural sector by offering affordable credits to farmers,” said the Premier while touring the just-ended Financial Services Week exhibitions in Arusha.

He said the government recognises the role that the bank plays in financing the agricultural sector, boosting the agri-sector while promoting the well-being of farmers.

Also, the PM challenged local commercial banks to consider reducing further interest rates to enable more people to access loans.

The central bank, in a bid to boost the agri-sector, set aside some 1.0tri/- for banks and financial institutions to lend farmers at less than 10 per cent interest rate.

Additionally, the overall lending rate decreased marginally to 15.53 per cent in September this year from 16.07 per cent last September.

TADB’s Public Relations and Marketing Manager, Amani Nkurlu said that they have already reduced interest rate to 9.0 per cent.

“We believe that this move will increase the appetite of our current and potential partner financial institutions to utilise the scheme, hence increasing the numbers of farmers benefitting from it,” he said.

The agricultural sector contributes 26.2 per cent of the country’s GDP, enabling the environment for the farmers to access loans with bearable interests to boost the sector’s growth.

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