The International Fund For Agriculture Development (IFAD) has announced that it will give k13.5 Million to Zambia to sustain rural communities affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

IFAD regional director for East and Southern Africa, Sara Mbago-Bhunu announced that Zambia is one of 59 selected countries that will benefit from the newly established rural stimulus facility.

“IFAD has put in US$40 million of its own funds as seed money for the rural stimulus facility to get started while more funds are raised from other development and cooperating partners around the globe,”

Dr. Mbago-Bhunu said.

Dr. Mbago-Bhunu further stated that IFAD’ s rural poor stimulus facility will finance targeted investments that support rural based small scale producers and poor households.

She also said that the funding to recipient countries will increase as more donors contribute to the facility.

The funding is meant to support government’s interventions in responding to the COVID-19 crisis.

Other areas to be financed are delivery targeted funds through existing financial institutions working with the small scale producers, provision of inputs and basic assets to the producers and facilitate access to markets as movements are restricted due to the pandemic.

Meanwhile, Finance Minister, Dr Ngandu has since thanked IFAD for the k13. 5 million support and mentioned that the rural poor stimulus facility will effectively supplement the rural sustanibility interventions that the government has so far developed in response to the pandemic induced economic slowdown.

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