African Development Fund Board of Directors, African Development Bank Group concession window (www.AfDB.org), has approved a $2 million grant to increase food production in Sierra Leone.
This program is under the $1.5 billion African Emergency Food Production Facility of the African Development Bank Group (https://bit.ly/3cB1QpX), in response to the global food crisis resulting from the Russo-Ukrainian conflict, which deepened existing food insecurity in Sierra Leone. This program will focus on rice production, harvest and marketing. The Ministry of Agriculture will provide smart subsidies to 67,000 small farmers to reduce the cost of certified seeds and fertilizers. The project will be launched via an e-wallet input distribution system over two growing seasons, starting in 2022.
The program will also benefit rice value chain actors and support the government of Sierra Leone to improve the regulatory environment to achieve climate-resilient agricultural development.
By the end of March 2023, the government is targeting 1,000 metric tons of subsidized fertilizer and 1,675 metric tons of subsidized seeds. An additional 5,862 metric tons of rice are expected.
Food accounts for about 32% of merchandise imports in Sierra Leone. The World Food Program estimated in April that 1.1 million people, 13.4% of the population, face acute hunger, meaning their lives or livelihoods are at risk from inadequate food consumption. More than 2 million people experience chronic hunger.
In 2020, Sierra Leone is described as having “alarming” levels of hunger, ranking 113 out of 117 countries in the 2020 Global Hunger Index. According to the preliminary findings of the 2021 Comprehensive Food Security and Vulnerability Analysis, 73% of Sierra Leone’s population is food insecure, with 11% of households very food insecure, and 62% quite vulnerable. The level of severe food insecurity is higher in female-headed households, at around 13%, compared to male-headed households, at 11%. Local rice production is not sufficient to meet national needs.
The projection for economic growth has been revised down to 3.6% in 2022 from 5.9% due to the Ukraine-Russia war, which has disrupted global supply chains and led to rising international fuel and food prices.
Distributed by the APO Group on behalf of the African Development Bank Group (AfDB).
Department of Communication and External Relations
About the African Development Bank Group:
The African Development Bank Group is Africa’s premier development financial institution. It consists of three distinct entities: the African Development Bank (AfDB), the African Development Fund (ADF) and the Nigerian Trust Fund (NTF). On the ground in 41 African countries with external offices in Japan, the Bank contributes to the economic development and social progress of its 54 regional member countries. For more information: www.AfDB.org
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Sierra Leone: African Development Fund Approves $2 Million Grant to Increase Food Production
Source link Sierra Leone: African Development Fund Approves $2 Million Grant to Increase Food Production