‘A lot of avenues for financing in agriculture sector’

‘A lot of avenues for financing in agriculture sector’

Karnataka Bank MD and CEO Mahabaleshwara M S inaugurates ‘Agri Business Conference’ of Karnataka Bank in Mangaluru on Saturday.

Banks have the task to transform ‘Traditional farmer’ into a ‘Techno-savvy entrepreneur’ and this change itself provides abundant lending opportunities, Karnataka Bank Limited Chief Executive Officer Managing Director Mahabaleshwara M S said.

He was delivering the keynote address at the ‘Agri Business Conference’ organised by Karnataka Bank here, on Saturday.

“It is an era where modern technology and practices are taking over the conventional methods of agricultural practices. This eventually leads to increase in productivity and effective handling of produce. Hence Food and agro-processing sector plays a vital role in the modern day agriculture. Processing will enhance the shelf life and will add value to the agricultural produces,” Mahabaleshwara said.

Cropping pattern

Stressing on the cropping pattern, he said a mix of food and cash crops should be cultivated to protect farmers from unforeseen circumstances like fall in market price, low production and natural calamities. Bank’s farmer-friendly agricultural products are regularly updated as and when required to take agriculture portfolio to new heights, Mahabaleshwara added.

Farmers income

“The government is giving thrust to food and agro-processing through PM Kisan Sampada Yojana and formation of separate ministry for animal husbandry and fisheries with a vision to double farmers income by 2022.”

He said, “There are enough opportunities for financing in agricultural sector, mainly agro-processing and agro-infrastructure. Bank will bestow special focus to leverage these positives,” he said.

Chief Operating Officer (COO) Balachandra Y V and Chief Business Officer (CBO) Gokuldas Pai also addressed the participants and highlighted the need for a healthy Agro-portfolio.