OPEC Fund loans totaling US$25m will boost regional agricultural integration in Benin, Togo
VIENNA, 25th October, 2021 – The OPEC Fund for International Development has announced the signing of loan agreements with the governments of Benin (US$15 million) and Togo (US$10 million) to support the Regional Programme for the Integration of Agricultural Markets (PRIMA).
The Programme’s objective is to strengthen the agriculture and trade sectors to sustainably increase the income and food security of rural households.
The loan will contribute to financing components of the coordinated regional programme PRIMA in Benin and Togo, and is co-financed by the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the governments of both countries.
It is expected to benefit some 144,000 households (99,000 in Benin and 45,000 in Togo), representing more than 833,000 individuals, with a strong emphasis on creating jobs for women and youth.
OPEC Fund Director-General Dr.
Abdulhamid Alkhalifa commented, “In both of our partner countries Benin and Togo, agriculture has a high development impact potential, employing a significant percentage of the working population.
We are pleased to support the governments’ efforts to transform their local agriculture sectors through diversification, increased productivity and climate change resilience.
The programme will help to improve the performance of sub-regional commercial centres and cross border transport corridors, promote rural entrepreneurship for young people and women, and fully integrate smallholders into national and sub-regional markets.
The OPEC Fund’s loan will support market integration and rural entrepreneurship, as well as the transformation of family farming adapted to climate change.
Specifically, the funds will help finance the rehabilitation of a total of nine semi-wholesale markets, 19 produce collection centres and 500 km of rural access road sections, connecting the production areas to markets.
Additionally, 4,000 hectares of agricultural land will be developed for sustainable irrigation management, enabling family farmers to increase their production and resilience to climate change.
OPEC Fund was established in January 1976 by the then 13 member countries of OPEC; including the United Arab Emirates.
It is the development finance institution established as a channel of aid to developing countries.