WASHINGTON, July 18, 2019 – More than 90,000 residents of rural areas in the State of Ceará will benefit from a new program approved today by the World Bank Board of Directors. The US$ 100 million Ceará Rural Sustainable and Competitiveness project (Phase II) will finance investments to help local farmers expand access to markets and adopt climate resilient approaches. The initiative will also improve access to water and sanitation services.
Although agriculture accounts for only 4.5 percent of Ceará’s GDP, it is the principal economic activity in rural areas, particularly for small landholders. It generates 21 percent of employment and is directly related to food and nutritional security. In the past six years, a persistent drought negatively impacted crops (maize, beans and rice) and livestock production (bovine, swine and poultry), thus reducing farmers’ income.
"This is one of the most important projects for our government. We increasingly seek to support rural farmers, giving them better working conditions and infrastructure. Family farming will always be a priority for us," said the governor of Ceará, Camilo Santana.
With 91 percent of its territory in semi-arid areas, Ceará is one of Brazil’s driest states and faces severe weather conditions. Frequent prolonged droughts, desertification and occasional flooding have caused major human disasters and severely impacted agriculture and food production.
“This project will help build a more prosperous, inclusive and climate-resilient rural economy and improved human development conditions for the rural population of Ceará,” said Paloma Anos Casero, World Bank Director for Brazil.
The project will advance socially inclusive growth and sustainable development through the following actions:
- Raising production by adopting improved agricultural technology.
- Increasing gross value of sales by members of organizations supported by the project.
- Improving market access for rural producers.
- Increasing access to improved water sources and sanitation services.
- Strengthening the institutional and coordination capacity of key sectorial agencies, relevant to the implementation of the State’s development programs and policies.
This Specific Investment Loan of US$ 100 million has a US$53.53 million counterpart contribution, with a 25-year maturity and a five-year grace period.
More information: www.worldbank.org/lac