Sunday, October 25, 2020
Education And Training

R100m Covid-19 grant funding set aside for smallholder farmers

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The Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development has set aside R100m for a Covid-19 grant scheme, which has been made available through Land Bank to smallholder farmers who have loans to pay, and experience financial distress resulting from the impact of Covid-19 and related interventions, such as the effects of the protracted Lockdown regulations, on their businesses.

The fund will be made available to existing Land Bank small holder farmers (customers with an annual turnover not exceeding R10m); this includes Land bank farmers who are serviced through the Bank’s intermediary partners.

The fund will be applied for loan instalment waiver of no more than one annual instalments due per client whose business operations have experienced distress due to the impacts of Covid-19 and associated intervention measures implemented by government. This concession will be applicable for distress, for the period starting on 1 April to 31 December 2020 for instalments due. The amount that a single client may access for this non-repayable financial support is limited to a maximum of R2m.

Support for customers

The rest of the Land Bank customers who are affected by Covid-19 may be assisted through the bank’s normal orbearance programs. This support will be made to Covid-19 affected customers on a case by case basis, and will amongst others, consists of the following potential solutions, as appropriate:

• Restructure of repayment terms, including offering repayment deferrals / holidays;

• Carrying over of debt and modifications of current loan agreements to address immediate cash flow stress.

Land Bank clients who qualify and wish to access assistance on the restructuring of their debts, may make enquiries directly with their account management specialists at the branches.

The application for funding is open as from until 16 October 2020, and can be accessed by contacting your commercial banker in the respective Land Bank office or through email on, az.oc.knabdnal@ecivresremotsuc. Unfortunately, over indebted customers and those with distressed accounts due to other reasons, not Covid-19 related, are excluded from this support.

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