August 19, 2016

Viewing farms as small enterprises

As a predominantly agricultural country, Myanmar still relies on its agricultural sector as a constant source of its GDP growth and a major generator of employment and income. Since 70% of the country’s population live in rural areas, the government needs to assign a higher priority to encouraging financial services and investments so as to ensure food security and poverty reduction.
The majority of rural people have no alternative but to depend on working on the farm for their livelihood. There has been a lot of literature portraying the rural life as peaceful and farmers as common benefactors of mankind. We all owe them a great debt of gratitude for their generosity. However, it is one thing to know the gratitude, but it is quite another to express our gratitude by repaying them for their role of food suppliers.
Strange as it may seem, farmers remain poor while merchants of agricultural products get richer and richer. They will never be able to escape poverty as long as there is no improvement in agricultural planning. There is every reason to believe that the government will be wise enough to develop long-term strategies to finance agricultural development plans and projects designed to increase food production and food security.
In other words, providing financial services to the agricultural community is an indirect way of feeding the whole country and helping rid the rural people of poverty. In addition, the rural development projects should encompass such activities as supply of quality seeds for high yields and necessary assistance to processing, production, distribution and marketing.


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