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AfDB approves EUR 100 million to finance African agriculture

Christian Fernsby |
The African Development Bank (AfDB) has approved a €100 million partial credit guarantee for the development of commercial agriculture projects across the continent.

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In a statement, AfDB said the funding was approved last week by its board of directors and will be disbursed through a Mauritian structured finance company, African Agriculture Impact Investment Limited.

“The AfDB board of directors meeting on May 29, 2019 approved a €100 million partial credit guarantee (PCG) to the structured finance company, African Agriculture Impact Investments Ltd, to develop commercial agriculture in Africa.

“The Mauritius-based company will leverage the bank’s partial credit guarantee to catalyse additional financing from international pension funds through an Agri-linked Note to facilitate investments in sustainable farmland and agricultural infrastructure across Africa.

“It will be authorised to operate in various African countries through a special purpose entity that will include two other active portfolios worth €62.5 million,” said the regional bank.

It said the investments were expected to target agricultural assets that will support multiple value chains including but not limited to wheat, maize, barley, sorghum , livestock, dairy, as well as diverse fruits, vegetables and nuts.

The package comes with strong social, environmental and economic development impact including the generation of over 8 000 jobs with significant involvement of women and youth across African nations including Zimbabwe.

The investment will also help disseminate commercial-scale agribusiness and farm operational capacity across Africa with high complementarity with small-scale farmers through technical, managerial and financial skills transfer, said AfDB.

“This is a landmark transaction that demonstrates the bank’s bold actions and firm commitment to the ‘Feed Africa’ objective by promoting food security and connecting African farms to adequate finance, skills, technology, and markets both regionally and internationally,” AfDB director for agriculture finance and rural development, Mr Atsuko Toda, said.

The project was also n line with AfDB’s strategic priority for Agricultural Transformation in Africa as it was envisaged to contribute to the expansion of agricultural finance and in increasing food productivity, import substitution, and value addition on the continent.

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