Empowering farmers in Kuala Langat

  • Metro News
  • Monday, 07 Oct 2019

Surina says the initiative will be the catalyst for further digital transformation for the industry to become a significant participant in the digital economy.

AS PART of the push to drive digital transformation and adoption across the nation, Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) is partnering with Pertubuhan Peladang Kawasan Kuala Langat (PPKKL), CIMB Bank Berhad and local payments system and infrastructure network PayNet to bring the latter’s DuitNow service to the Kuala Langat farming community.

The new initiative is an extension of the already established Digital Agriculture programme which aims to help Malaysian farmers adopt digital agricultural solutions for improved efficiency and increased crop revenue.

Since its inception in 2018, the programme’s initiatives have seen farmers adopt an Internet of things (IoT)-enabled fertigation system that has helped them reduce monthly fertiliser use by 20%, lower monthly manpower requirements by 50%, and increase the quality of yield (grade A chilies) by up to 90%.

Building on this success, MDEC and PPKKL have identified a new pain-point that they seek to address – payments.

Currently, PPKKL’s process of paying its members through cash, cheque and bank transfer is plagued by the problem of its members holding multiple bank accounts or changing bank accounts, often resulting in cancelled or rejected payments and incurring high operational costs.

This has now been remedied via PayNet’s latest digital solution called DuitNow – a digital payment platform that enables fund transfers using consistent and easily-retrieved identifiers such as MyKad or mobile phone numbers.

This enables PPKKL to pay its 400 members in a way that greatly reduces the risk of rejections and cancellations.

The end goal of this initiative, aside from promoting operational effectiveness and efficiency, is to bring these farmers into the cashless ecosystem.

“MDEC’s collaboration with our partners to enable farmers in Kuala Langat to enjoy the benefit of digital services is a great example of how we are advocating an inclusive digital economy.

“I have maintained that digital transformation requires human transformation, and I am happy to see the enthusiasm and readiness of our farmers here to adopt digital to enhance their lives, ” said MDEC chief executive officer Surina Shukri at the launch of the initiative.

“4IR, cashless society, upward mobility – all these terms are digital features that will further empower the agriculture industry.

“This initiative will be the catalyst for further digital transformation for the industry to become a significant participant in the digital economy, ” she added.

DuitNow currently records an average of 500,000 transactions a day, with 7.7 million mobile numbers and MyKad numbers registered to receive funds through the service.

Using this integration pilot programme, MDEC can take this concept nationwide and help spur adoption in other farming communities around the country.

This translates into a potential 900,000 adopters nationwide.

PayNet’s collaboration with MDEC, PPKKL and CIMB aims to create an efficient platform for the farmers to receive and make daily payments via DuitNow easily with their MyKad number, ” said PayNet group chief executive officer Peter Schiesser.

“DuitNow is available at 35 participating banks via mobile and internet banking, making it highly accessible, secure and convenient for users, ” he added.

The initiative will help PPKKL members to get acquainted with DuitNow while benefiting from the service’s efficiency and convenience.

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