Saudi Arabia has marked SAR 2 billion ($533.3 million) to help fund agriculture products and ensure food security amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, the kingdom’s Agriculture Development Fund announced on Tuesday.
The initiative will be carried out by both direct and indirect loans and will initially focus on products such as soybeans, yellow corn, rice, and sugar.
Other products will be added in the future depending on market needs and the kingdom’s needs, the statement said.
“This initiative…[aims] to meet development priorities and economic needs within the urgent initiatives approved by the Saudi government to address the impacts of the novel coronavirus,” the statement said.
The statement added that an additional goal is to “mitigate the expected economic impacts on private sectors and economic activities, including the agricultural sector.”
The fund also granted SAR 60 million ($15.98m) to finance a wide variety of projects, such as greenhouses and in the poultry sector.
Munir bin Fahad Al-Sahli, the fund’s director-general, said that “the loans are aimed at enhancing the efficiency of the local agricultural sector, achieving food security, and ensuring the continuity of supply chains and the abundance of the supply of agricultural products and food commodities.”