IFAD supports $18 million USD climate-smart project in Georgia
Friday, February 20The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) has announced a new nationwide project worth almost $20 million USD to help small-scale farmers in Georgia raise their incomes and increase their climate resilience.
Georgia’s Minister of Finance Nodar Khaduri and IFAD president Kanayo Nwanze signed the agreement in Rome, Italy today, which had the official title ‘Agricultural Modernization, Market Access and Resilience (AMMAR) project. The deal consisted of a $13.3 million IFAD loan and a $5.3 million Global Environment Facility (GEF) grant.
The project will be implemented over four years, from 2015 to 2019.
"Financial assistance provided by IFAD is vital for increasing the production capacity as well as to increase the export. Finally, it will support Georgian agriculture sector to become an important pillar of the Georgian economy,” Khaduri said.
IFAD said Georgia’s agriculture sector was highly vulnerable to the impact of climate change, which was leading to serious production losses and threats to food security. Increasing dryness was threatening to devastate the already semi-arid Eastern portions of Georgia by the end of the century, stated IFAD in a press release.
The project will aim to address these challenges by supporting inclusive growth of climate-smart agricultural value chains. It will mainstream a climate-smart approach throughout its activities, driven by the needs of small-scale farmers.
The project will focus on rural families in areas where there is agricultural and irrigation development potential. It will primarily target small-holder farmers, but will also support others who are involved in agricultural value chains, including agricultural business people, cooperatives and extension and input service providers.
One of the goals of the project was to increase small-holder farmers’ incomes by 20 percent in more than 10,000 households; to increase by 20 percent the total value of surplus agricultural production of targeted products; and to ensure that 50 percent of trained small-holder producers adopt one or more climate-smart technologies, such as efficient irrigation.
Since 1997, IFAD has invested a total of $52 million in Georgia, leveraging an additional $72 million in co-financing for five Programmes and projects benefitting approximately 93,000 rural families. (Agenda.ge)