IFAD Pro­motes Cli­mate ‘Smart’ In­vest­ments

THISDAY - - BUSINESS/ MONEYGUIDE -

Agri­cul­ture is step­ping up in the fight against cli­mate change with help from the pri­vate sec­tor as a new re­port from the In­ter­na­tional Fund for Agri­cul­tural Devel­op­ment (IFAD) has shown that in­vest­ing in cli­mate-re­silient agri­cul­ture can at­tract size­able con­tri­bu­tions from the pri­vate sec­tor.

The Busi­ness Ad­van­tage – Mo­bil­is­ing Pri­vate Sec­tor Led Cli­mate Ac­tions in Agri­cul­ture, a study of IFAD in­vest­ments through its Adap­ta­tion for Small­holder Agri­cul­ture Pro­gramme (ASAP), showed that for every dollar of ASAP in­vest- ment, be­tween US$0.77–2.85 was lever­aged in pri­vate-sec­tor in­vest­ments - help­ing coun­tries reach cli­mate fi­nance com­mit­ments sched­uled un­der the Paris cli­mate agree­ment.

“IFAD works with the pri­vate sec­tor on adap­ta­tion in­vest­ments that are both fi­nan­cially prof­itable and so­cially and en­vi­ron­men­tally sound,” said IFAD Pres­i­dent Gil­bert F. Houngbo.

“Many of these adap­ta­tion in­vest­ments were deemed high risk by the pri­vate sec­tor, but ASAP op­er­ates as a de-risk­ing or in­sur­ance in­stru­ment to en­cour­age busi­ness to in­vest in them.”

Pre­vi­ously, in Bhutan the pri­vate sec­tor was wary of in­vest­ing in small scale dairy farms due to prod­uct qual­ity con­cerns. With IFAD in­vest­ment lead­ing the way, how­ever, lo­cal farm­ers im­proved the qual­ity of their milk and then part­nered with a lo­cal dairy com­pany to cre­ate an as­sured mar­ket. In the first year, the in­vest­ment ($77,429) was close to 2.5 times the amount in­vested by IFAD. The com­pany’s sup­ply of milk was greatly im­proved while farm­ers re­ported their in­come from dairy sales in­creased by 54 to 170 per cent.

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