Crop insurance scheme in final stage, ministry hopes to make it for 2018 Budget: Shabery

JUNE MOH

KUALA LUMPUR: Padi Beras Nasional Bhd (Bernas) is expected to contribute RM10 million to the crop insurance scheme set to be introduced in the upcoming national budget.


Agriculture and Agro-Based Industry Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Shabery Cheek said the main aim behind the introduction of the fund was to protect farmers in the event of natural disasters.


The module, he said, was in its final stage before being presented to the Cabinet.


“The ministry is fine-tuning the final insurance module and will table it to the Cabinet in the next two months,” he told reporters after officiating the Bernas Awards Night here today.


He said, at the moment, the proposed insurance scheme was still being finalised, taking into account feedback from farmers and insurance companies, which included total insurance premium, the threshold income and average produce of the farmers, before it can be implemented.


“The module will be consistent with those being practice in other countries.


“The ministry and Agro Bank are looking at the draft and we are committed to implementing this insurance scheme,” he said.


He said 200,000 farmers would benefit from the first crop insurance scheme introduced in the country.


Shabery said the ministry would also obtain feedback from agricultural authorities including Muda Agriculture Development Authority (Mada) and state governments on the proposed insurance scheme to ensure better implementation.


Meanwhile, Shabery presented 15 awards to seven farmers, four Bumiputera manufacturers and four Bumiputera wholesalers which have been instrumental in providing steady supply of rice for the nation.


Special awards were also given to a service provider, a farmer organisation and a corporation which has supported Bernas.