The Sugar Cane Growers Fund (SCGF) has 10,568 loan accounts valued $29.6 million (at August 31, 2021) which is 58 per cent of the market share of the cane farm loan portfolio, says fund chief executive officer Raj Sharma.
Mr Sharma said there were about 11,622 active cane growers of which 6565 had loan accounts with SCGF.
“SCGF annually approves up to 2500 loan applications with yearly disbursements of around $8m, consisting of over 2000 transactions. In addition, there are about five cane payments for 6500 growers meaning another 30,000 payment transactions.
“There are over 32,000 transactions generated from SCGF in 12 months and most goes through the banks,” Mr Sharma said.
He said their new partnership with Digicel Fiji MyCash mobile wallet brought another stream of choice for the SCGF growers for payment median, in addition to banks and other platforms.
A statement from Digicel Fiji said this partnership would allow beneficiaries with a Digicel SIM to opt to receive SCGF financial programs such as loans in their MyCash wallet.
It said using MyCash, beneficiaries would be able to use the wallet to support their communities and livelihoods while continuing to develop their farms and enhance production.
SCGF’s Information Technology manager Sheetal Shailini said they were concluding their new ICT project with Online Portal, mySCGF App, SMS gateway with many other advanced and secured technological services to improve the services for the growers.
With the SCGF joining the platform, its beneficiaries who are MyCash customers will also be able to send and receive money anywhere in Fiji with no fees, shop with contactless payment with QR Scan & Pay, buy recharge or an All In prime bundle data plan, and pay bills for themselves or their family at anytime and anywhere with their mobile wallet.
Farid Mohammed, Digicel Fiji CEO, said; “As a digital operator, we are pleased to be able to provide a solution for sugar cane growers to access money securely without the need for a bank account.