Israeli company signs financing deal to build crop processing plants

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rice grains

A FARM equipment manufacturer said it has partnered with an Israeli company to help finance $100 million worth of processing plants.

In a briefing, James P. Amparo, president and chief executive officer of Yovel East Research and Development Inc., said that the funding will be provided by Israel’s Mima Tech, while Yovel will build the facilities.

“This is in partnership with the Philippine government, so Yovel, Mima Tech, and GGVC (Gilan Global Ventures Corp.) will be partnering with the Department of Agriculture (DA)… we will work closely with the government kasi gusto namin s’yang dalhin doon ito sa mga (because we want to bring this to the) local governments… who will be able to benefit from this loan facility,” he said Wednesday in Quezon City.

President Rodrigo R. Duterte witnessed the signing of several cooperation agreements including some with agricultural technology firms during his visit to Israel last year.

Mima Tech is seeking to break into the Philippine market for post-harvest processing technology, while GGVC will serve as consultant on the projects.

Mr. Amparo said that he is planning to begin with rice farmers, who were heavily affected by the implementation of the Rice Tariffication Law, but hopes to move on to other crops and commodities. The DA will help determine where to establish the plants.

“As of now we can give (borrowers) 10 to 15 years to pay. For interest we are still looking at 3% to 4%, and it is self-liquidating, meaning the process facility can earn on its own,” he said.

The processing facility can accept undried palay from farmers, eliminating the need to dry the unmilled rice on any flat surface available, sometimes on public roads, resulting in damage to the grain that lowers quality and yields.

Yovel will build the facility for the farmers, purchase the produce, or offer marketing services. The facility will also be co-managed with local government for three to five years to properly familiarize the farmers on plant operations before the plants are fully handed over to them. — Vincent Mariel P. Galang