The livestock sector accounts for 1.9% of the gross domestic product and 20% of the population.Photo: Star/File


The livestock sector accounts for 1.9% of the gross domestic product and 20% of the population.Photo: Star/File

Despite continued growth and strong prospects for the livestock sector, bank lending to encourage investment in agriculture remains low.

Dairy, poultry and other livestock farmers have obtained 14% of loans totaling Tk 26,500 crore disbursed by the Bank for the agricultural sector in 2020-21.

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The amount of loans from financial institutions to marginal farmers is very small. Md Ainul Haque, former director of the Department of Livestock Services (DLS), said at a seminar hosted by Adorsho Pranisheba Ltd yesterday at a hotel in the city that livestock insurance also does not exist.

He said the livestock sector, which accounts for 1.9% of gross domestic product (GDP) and 20% of the population, was reflected in increased meat and milk production.

For example, milk production increased from 500,000 tons in 2021 to 130,000 tons in 2021. DLS.

He said investment in the sector is needed to increase meat and milk production, reduce import dependence, create jobs and increase the availability of animal protein, namely milk.

“We are behind other countries in milk production,” he said, adding that Australia has 642 milliliters of milk per capita, compared to 642 milliliters per capita. He added that it was 208 milliliters.

More than 100,000 tonnes of powdered milk and dairy products are imported each year, at a cost of about 2,000 kroner per year, Haque added.

He said procedural complexity and difficulties in arranging collateral by farmers, the risk of disease transmission and animal mortality, and lack of livestock insurance were the main factors affecting financial inclusion in the sector.

Haque demanded easy and cheap loans from livestock producers and guaranteed loans to real farmers. Livestock can be used as collateral instead of land, he said.

Agriculture Minister Mohammed Abdul Razak said at the event that real farmers should be given unsecured and easy loans.

He said the government has set up a window for farmers to borrow at an interest rate of 4%.

However, farmers often do not meet the difficult conditions that exist when obtaining loans. That’s why the lending process needs to be made easier, he said.

Razzaque said the price of cattle is between Tk 500,000 and Tk 100,000.

He said livestock should be insured. The problem is that people don’t trust insurance companies. They harass and cheat customers. Insurance should be customer friendly by ending this harassment and fraud, he said.

He also spoke about the recent price increase in eggs and said protein product prices would fall.”This is temporary,” he said.

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