eLadang Lab programme: Digital technology adoption by smallholder farmers in Malaysia

To assist youths in rural areas and to expand the rural digital economy, the Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC) launched a number of ambitious programmes such as eUsahawan, eRezeki and eLadang. eLadang is a programme that encourages not only existing farmers but also new farmers to adopt affordable digital solutions in farming by undergoing hands-on training in using the new technology together with good agriculture practices. The programme is further complemented with other forms of training and assistance e.g. in business management, financial services, asset management and adoption of digital economy business models. In 2018, MDEC embarked on its first pilot project to introduce smart fertigation system for chili farm. Aside from this, MDEC is currently performing POCs on other IoT solutions for smart hydroponic management, smart aquaculture, smart pesticide management & smart water monitoring for poultry.

MDEC and its agriculture strategic partner, Pertubuhan Peladang Kawasan Kuala Langat (PPKKL) piloted the use of a new digital payment service called DuitNow, in collaboration with Payment Network Malaysia Sdn Bhd (PayNet), a Bank Negara subsidiary. PayNet’s latest digital payment service called DuitNow is a digital payment method that enables fund transfers using easily retrieved identifiers such as MyKad (national identification card) or mobile phone numbers. This service is available at 35 participating banks’ mobile and internet banking.