Phub Dem | Paro

Eleven employees from sectors affected by the Covid-19 pandemic joined the Farm Machinery Corporation Limited (FMCL) in Paro as of April 3.

The 11 individuals work as daily wage earner.  

FMCL’s chief executive officer, Karma Thinley, said the corporation planned to employ more people affected by the global pandemic.

He said youths would get hands-on-training in agricultural works, mushroom cultivation and other activities.

He also said they would engage some of those individuals in contract farming and other activities like roof painting, fencing and constructing irrigation canals. “By doing this we could replace construction workers and reduce cash outflow.”

Karma Thinley said FMCL was also planning to take up joint ventures with those from affected sectors. “The corporation will provide land and investment and they would take up manual work,” he said. “The profit will be equally divided.”

He said they are discussing with Tourism Council of Bhutan, Druk Waste Management and some farmers.

However, an official said they were skeptical if the individuals would take up manual work.

Meanwhile, FMCL is carrying out commercial and contract farming to achieve food self-sufficiency through mass cultivation of crops in commercial and contract farms established across the country.

The company aims to upscale agriculture production by recultivating fallow lands and initiating land terracing to cultivate in government reserve forest (GRF).

FMCL also engages youths in sequential training on various crops through modern farming technologies and enhances farm mechanization through hiring services.  

There are eight contract and commercial farms around the country.

Karma Thinley said the regional farming teams were already gearing for mass production. “FMCL also deliver vegetables to schools and hospitals where there are no farmers’ group and cooperatives.”