KOTA KINABALU: A total RM285mil to implement agro-food programmes has been channelled to Sabah and Sarawak this year.
Agriculture and Food Industry Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ronald Kiandee said RM135mil was allocated to Sabah and RM150mil was disbursed to Sarawak.
He said the allocation was distributed to all agencies and departments under the Agriculture Ministry to implement courses, training and activities that contribute to the growth of the agro-food sector.
“The distribution of these funds was to develop the agro-food sector in the country, especially in Sabah,” he said after a working visit to the Malaysian Agricultural Research and Development Institute (Mardi) Sabah, here on Thursday (April 7).
During his visit, Kiandee also witnessed the signing of a memorandum of understanding (MoU) between Mardi and Universiti Malaysia Sabah (UMS) for a research and development collaboration.
The MoU hopes to strengthen existing research and development for the development of new technologies and improving quality in the agriculture industry.
Kiandee said that Mardi Sabah had managed to train more than 12,000 young people and local entrepreneurs through training and short-term courses offered since it started operating in the state.
He said Mardi also provided technical advice and technopreneur guidance to 50 agricultural and agro-based entrepreneurs a year.
Kiandee later handed over RM9,000 grants each to two entrepreneurs involved in farming.
Earlier Thursday, Kiandee met with Chief Minister Datuk Seri Hajiji Noor to brief on programmes undertaken by the Agriculture Ministry in Sabah.