Banks to open loans for enterprises to buy in catfish

The consumption of catfish has dwindled lately causing big difficulties for fish farmers. For a calculation, the total input cost to grow each kilogram of fish now amounts to VND15,000 to VND16,000, while selling prices are effectively pushed down to VND14,300 to VND13,800 per kilogram. So losses are unavoidable for the farmers. Even worst is the fact that mature fish - that is fish in time for sale - is piling up in culturing ponds awaiting for dealers and enterprises to come but that seems unlikely to happen any soon.

In an effort to help fish farmers lessen their losses during this hard time, the Central Government has decided to spend VND1,000 billion in supporting loans to fish buying enterprises. This VND1,000 billion would be lent out by the Agribank, according to Mr Cao Duc Phat, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development. Mr Phat said, the Government's viewpoint is that loans would be preferentially opened to enterprises for buying in catfish. According to the State Bank Governor, enterprises that has borrowed in any banks before now can borrow again from the same banks provided that loans are used for catfish buying. In case there is a shortage of cash to make loans to the enterprises, State Bank provincial branches can report the situation to the Central State Bank for assistance. All the procedures to borrow money from banks must strictly follow the bank rules.

At the moment, fish farmers are also supported by pushing back the time to repay due loans. For self-sufficient enterprises, loans are opened so that they can hire other companies to do the processing and keep the fish in stock. This is seen as a way to help farmers resolve the problem of waiting fish in ponds.

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