International Fund for Agriculture Development (IFAD) has injected K13.5 Million in rural sustainability.
Regional Director for East and Southern Africa Sara Mbango-Bhunu said that Zambia is one of 59 selected countries that will benefit from IFAD’s newly established Rural Poor Stimulus Facility.
Dr Mbago-Bhunu has also said that as a contribution to Zambia’s handling of economic challenges beset on rural communities by the Covid-19 pandemic, IFAD will initially give Zambia, K13.5 million.
“ IFAD has put in US$40 million of its own funds as seed money for the Rural Poor Stimulus Facility “to get started” while more funds are raised from other development and cooperating partners around the globe, the IFAD Regional Director for East and Southern Africa, indicated in her letter.
“It is anticipated that the funding to recipient countries will increase as more donors contribute to the facility,” the letter read in part. IFAD’s Rural Poor Stimulus Facility resources are intended to support the Government’s interventions in responding to the Covid-19 crisis, by financing targeted investments that support rural based small-scale producers and poor households,” she said.
She said to help weather the economic effects of Covid-19 and subject to a mutually agreed action plan, IFAD’s are to Provide inputs and basic assets to enable small-scale producers to maintain production and establish fast-maturing alternative agriculture enterprises;
Dr Mbago-bhunu said also to Facilitate access to markets in conditions of restricted movement and ensuring that markets remain open, and break-even demand, feasible.
Others are delivering targeted funds through existing financial institutions that work with rural based small-scale producers and small and medium agriculture enterprises – to preserve services, markets and jobs.
Dr Bwalya Nga’ndu has thanked IFAD for the K13.5 million support “because the Rural Poor Stimulus Facility will effectively supplement the rural sustainability interventions that the Government has so far developed in response to the Covid-19 induced economic slowdown.”