Antananarivo, June 16, 11:22 a.m. – The issue of financing farmers’ activities should be one of the topics discussed during the national conference on food self-sufficiency to be held in Ivato from this Thursday. The President of the Republic Andry Rajoelina proposed that the congressmen look into ways of lowering the interest rate on loans granted to farmers.
“A loan with an interest rate of 5% is already difficult to repay, so imagine the repayment of a loan with a monthly rate of 3%, or 36% per year”, underlines the Head of State in his speech. “It can only kill the peasant,” he continues.
The President of the Republic placed particular emphasis on the rates applied and practiced by microfinance institutions. “Too high for the peasants”, in his words. “We are going to manufacture heavy weapons to produce,” he says, referring to the inputs and materials that farmers need to produce and insisting on the importance of giving farmers the means to acquire these weapons. He adds that the State is ready to provide financial support to micro-finance institutions so that they can lower the interest rates charged to farmers.