from DANAI MWARUMBWA in Harare, Zimbabwe
HARARE, (CAJ News) – THE African Development Fund (AfDB) has approved a grant of US$25,65 million to help Zimbabwe enhance domestic food production and supply.
Drawn from the Transition Support Facility (TSF), the funds are to assist the Southern African country mitigate against a possible food crisis.
Although the board provided a waiver, Zimbabwe is in debt and in arrears and therefore is ineligible for TSF resources.
On July 15, the African Development Fund, the concessional arm of the African Development Bank (AfDB) Group, granted the country an exemption from debt-related eligibility criteria, given the severity of its circumstances.
Leila Mokaddem, the bank’s Director General in Southern Africa, said the project aims to mitigate the food insecurity situation in Zimbabwe, which results from a poor agriculture season due to rainfall deficits and the impacts of the Russia/Ukraine conflict.
“The conflict has contributed to a sharp rise in commodity prices, including food and farm inputs, such as fertilizer and seed,” Mokaddem said.
“This project is in line with the Bank’s Zimbabwe strategy to support the private sector and agriculture productivity and sustainability as well as developing related value chains.”
Support to Zimbabwe falls under the AfDB’s $1,5 billion African Emergency Food Production Facility, a response to the global crisis that has deepened shortages in many African countries.
The World Food Programme has identified Zimbabwe as one of 20 countries globally that need the most urgent support due to rainfall deficits that cut 2022 cereal production.
– CAJ News