The government is set to spend NT$1.25 billion (US$42.23 million) and NT$1.2 billion on agriculture stimulus vouchers and culture vouchers from late June in an effort to help boost the two sectors which have been hit hard by the COVID-19 pandemic, two Cabinet-level agencies said Wednesday.
The Council of Agriculture (COA) said it plans to issue 5 million vouchers, each with a face value of NT$250 to Taiwan nationals, starting later this month. The vouchers will be valid at 10 types of locations that sell agricultural products.
The vouchers will be issued in electronic form and consumers must log onto a specific website and enter their national ID number and mobile phone number to receive the voucher, although planning of the website is currently ongoing.
The agriculture stimulus voucher program seeks to generate about NT$1.7 billion in economic revenue for the agricultural sector, the COA said.
The COA decided to launch the program after a survey of more than 100 operators of recreational agriculture businesses, including those in the agriculture, forestry and fisheries sectors, found that revenue fell by half in February and plummeted further in March and April due to the economic fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic.
In addition, to encourage agricultural tour groups and consumption, the COA will provide an additional NT$100 subsidy for each person who is part of a tour group that visits the 10 categories of locations selling agricultural products.
The places where the NT$250 vouchers and NT$100 subsidy can be used include recreational farms, stores operated by members of recreational agriculture organizations, farm and fisheries specialty sales centers, direct sales centers for farm products run by farmers and stores run by agricultural tour operators, according to the COA.
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