KARACHI: The SBP Banking Services Corporation (SBP BSC) has launched the Agriculture Finance Literacy Programme (AFLP) through a series of five workshops conducted nationwide.

This flagship initiative, as recommended by the Agricultural Credit Advisory Committee, seeks to raise awareness among the farming community regarding available financial schemes and government-driven initiatives.

The AFLP stands out as a pioneering effort, as it unites all major stakeholders, including SBP, commercial banks, federal, and provincial governments departments, to engage with farmers collectively.

The AFLP addresses critical facets of agricultural finance, with a primary focus on reaching out to New to Bank Farmers (NTBFs) to broaden the pool of borrowers and promote financial inclusion. It also places a dedicated emphasis on reducing the gender as well as regional disparities in agricultural finance by ensuring equitable access to financial resources for farmers across the nation.

Over the next five years, AFLP aspires to integrate 500,000 farmers in crop sector, livestock, poultry and fisheries into the financial ecosystem. This Program will significantly contribute to Pakistan's agricultural growth and sustainability by effectively addressing their primary constraint that is financing requirements.

In conjunction with the program launch, the Financial Inclusion Support Department of SBP BSC has conducted a series of five workshops in major cities, including Karachi, Quetta, Lahore, Rawalpindi, and Peshawar.

The key objectives of the workshops were to sensitize banks officials, who will take forward the literacy program at gross root levels; and to bring the provincial departments on board who have a vast network across the country that can be utilized for this campaign.

These workshops saw active participation from focal persons representing commercial banks and representatives from Provincial Agriculture Extension departments, Livestock Departments, and Fisheries Departments of these regions.

This collaborative endeavor, uniting SBP, SBP BSC, and various stakeholders, underscores our collective commitment for empowering the farming community, advancing financial inclusion, and propelling agricultural growth throughout Pakistan.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2023


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