World Bank, Angolan Government Sign Agreement to Support Agricultural Sector Development

November 26, 2009

The World Bank and the Angolan Government signed a credit agreement of US$30 million from the International Development Association (IDA) for the implementation of the Market-oriented Smallholder Agriculture project.

This project is consistent with Angola’s poverty reduction strategy and constitutes a key element of the Bank’s Interim Strategy Note which is organized around three pillars: a) strengthening public sector management and government institutional capacity; b) supporting the rebuilding of critical infrastructure and the improvement of service delivery for poverty reduction; and c) promoting growth of non-mineral sectors.

The main objective of the project is to generate broad-based and sustainable increase in the income of rural smallholders. The project will be implemented on specific municipalities and communes in Bié, Huambo and Malanje Provinces, through improved organization and efficiency of agricultural production and marketing.

"Although the economy has been growing rapidly, and there has been a positive impact in revitalizing the local agricultural markets, much remains to be done to ensure that farmers have access to the market,” said Aniceto Bila, the project's Task Team Leader. “This project, which takes a community demand-driven approach to ensure that beneficiaries determine the project activities, will benefit more than 126,000 households, most of whom are producing at subsistence levels. This project will help them move beyond farming for survival to farming for a living."

It is expected that with the implementation of this agriculture project, smallholders in the targeted areas will more actively participate in and benefit from a market-driven value chain approach so as to improve competitiveness and re-launch agricultural production. The reactivation of the agricultural value chains and the rural-urban commercial circuits can generate a self-sustaining growth dynamic. Producing for already existing food markets in cities as well as supplying newly reactivated manufacturing will ensure integration of the rural economy in the country’s overall economy.

The project, which includes three technical components covering three strategic orientations: (i) institutional development and capacity building; (ii) agricultural marketing and competitiveness; and (iii) investing in agricultural production systems, will contribute to the Angolan Government efforts to improve  and develop the agricultural sector, as well as diversify the country’s economy.

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