IFAD Project to Develop Skills for Climate-Resilient Agriculture in Rwanda

IFAD logoRome, 7 April 2014. Climate change will have an important impact on agriculture, and farmers will need to adapt their practices to the new conditions. In order to provide opportunities for smallholder farmers to acquire the skills, knowledge and access to specialized service providers to create and operate viable businesses capable of managing the climate risks in post-production processes and delivering larger volumes of improved produce to the market, the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), in collaboration with the Government of Rwanda, has launched the Climate Resilient and Post-harvest Agribusiness Support Project (PASP).

Post-harvest losses are recognized as one of the greatest sources of inefficiency in agricultural production in Rwanda and therefore one of the best opportunities for effectively improving crop productivity and resilience given the country’s reliance on rainfed agriculture and its vulnerability to climate change. The National Adaptation Programme of Action and National Strategy of Rwanda on Climate Change and Low-Carbon Development highlight improved post-harvest management as a key climate change adaptation priority.

To buffer the growing range of climate-induced stresses, new agricultural investment programmes need to incorporate improved post-harvest processing and storage techniques. The PASP, which is supported by an IFAD loan of US$13.45 million and grants of US$13.45 million and US$7 million provided by IFAD’s Adaptation for Smallholder Agriculture Program (ASAP), will serve exactly this purpose.

“The realization of the Rwanda Vision 2020 will primarily depend on the dynamism of the agricultural sector and in particular the growth and sustainability of food crops in the face of increasing climatic uncertainties. PASP is fully aligned with the Strategic Plan for the Transformation of Agriculture (PSTAIII), which provides the policy framework for the agricultural sector in the country”, said Tony Nsanganira, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Agriculture and Animal Resources. “Still in the process of being adopted, PSTAIII translates government policy objectives into a comprehensive roadmap to transform Rwanda’s agriculture from a subsistence to a knowledge-based, value-creating sector while ensuring food security and preserving natural resources under increasing climatic uncertainty”.
 
With the total cost of US$83.35 million, the project will be cofinanced by the Government of Rwanda and the beneficiaries through loans from the national commercial banking sector and will be implemented by the Ministry of Agriculture and Animal Resources under the supervision of IFAD.

For more information on the project, click on the following link: http://www.ifad.org/media/press/2014/26.htm