US $4 million to help revamp agriculture


The International Fund for Agricultural Development (Ifad) will be funding projects in the sector for a period of five years through a loan of US $3 million while the African Development Bank (AfDB) has approved a US $1 million grant which will also help revamp the industry.

Making the announcement last week the Minister for Natural Resources and Industry Peter Sinon said the loan from Ifad has been made possible following Seychelles’ recent re-engagement in the international body.
This has resulted in talks and different exchange visits by Ifad experts to Seychelles with the more recent one being that of the institution’s president Kanayo Nwanze.

He said the money will be used to complete ongoing initiatives to get the sector moving and these include improving access to affordable funding to revive the agriculture and fisheries sectors, capacity building, improve support services delivery, introduce new and modern technologies and infrastructure to the declining sector, help farmers and fishermen to upgrade their produce and set up mechanisms to ensure and secure markets for them.

A draft of the project will be presented to the Ifad board for approval next month.

With regard to the US $1 million grant from AfDB, Mr Sinon said it will be used to conduct several detailed agricultural sector reviews and appropriate policies and strategies which are being proposed in  an agriculture integrated project, paving the way for funding in areas which have been identified as needing assistance.

Minister Sinon said a number of experts in different agricultural fields such as livestock, infrastructure,  hydrology, irrigation, among others sent by the AfDB are expected to start arriving in the country next month.
Minister Sinon said the funding will be a another great boost to ongoing effort to revitalise the agriculture and fisheries sector.

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