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Agriculture - Nutrition | Economy - Development

Rural development projects in Cameroon financed

afrol News, 9 January - The Cameroonian government has assured financing totalling US$ 47 million to implement two rural development projects in Anglophone Cameroon. One is to benefit 240,000 households in the Rumpi area (South-West Province), while the other is to create employment in the disadvantaged Grassfield area (North-West Province).

Olabisi Ogunjobi, Vice-President of the African Development Bank (ADB), and Jean Missoup, Chargé d'affaires of Cameroon in Algiers, yesterday in Tunis signed loan and grant agreements totalling US$ 46.81 million to finance two rural development projects in Cameroon.

- These two projects aim to increase on a sustainable basis the incomes of smallholders in the Rumpi area, located in the South-West Province, and the Grassfield region, located in the North-West Province, commented Mr Ogunjobi after the signing ceremony.

He added that "They will help build up the managerial capacities of rural and public communities institutions, improve the road network and other socio-economic infrastructures. They will also help increase agricultural production through enhanced productivity."

On his side, Mr Missoup commended that "the participatory approach presently developed by the ADB and used in the design of these two projects."

The Rumpi Area Participatory Development Project was approved by the ADF on 13 May 2003. The funding includes a US$ 22.29 million loan and a grant US$ 2.23 million.

According to projections made by the Cameroonian government, the project "will directly benefit 240,000 rural households and 320,000 women living in the Rumpi area who will increase their average annual income from franc CFA 145,000 currently to about franc CFA 200,000 by the end of the investment input."

The US$ 22.29 million loan to finance "the Grassfield decentralised and participatory rural development project" was approved by the ADF on 26 May 2003.

The implementation of this project, according to Cameroonian authorities, "will contribute to the creation of 29,300 permanent and temporary jobs, curb the rural exodus by the youth and foster the emergence and integration of women in economic channels."

The government's goal of the project is to contribute to poverty reduction and to enhance food security in rural areas. More specifically, the project aimed to "increase the incomes of smallholders in the Grassfield region through increased agricultural production and improved socio-economic environment."

The communities of Cameroon's Grassfield area are among the most disadvantaged in the country. Basic infrastructures are inadequate, the inhabitants have insufficient training, the production and human concentration areas are isolated, health and education coverage is poor and the agricultural sector financing is practically inexistent.

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