- The Executive Board of the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) concluded its two-day meeting in Rome, approving more than US$161.56 million in loans and $56.26 million in grants - many of them for projects helping smallholder farmers adapt to a changing climate and contributing to reductions in greenhouse gas emissions.
The funding which will see poor farmers seeking to better their lives against the backdrop of climate change include projects to: enable Chad's water network to support the seasonal movement of shepherds and livestock, encourage small-scale water resources management to increase yields in Bangladesh and strengthen water harvesting and soil conservation measures in Lebanon.
The Board also approved $3.35 million in grants to international research centres and intergovernmental organizations.
IFAD's Executive Board oversees the organisation's general operations and approves its programme of work. It consists of 18 members and 18 alternate members who hold three-year terms. The Board meets three times a year.
Other projects approved by the 97th Executive Board session are for the Western and Central Africa, consisting of two project loans of $31.5 million; Mauritania for the Value Chains Development Programme for Poverty Reduction to the total cost of $17.8 million, while the Eastern and Southern Africa has been approved for two project loans and two project grants of $96.0 million.
The funding will also cover a Pastoral Community Development Project in Ethiopia, a livelihoods project as well as community agriculture improvement in Uganda, the Smallholder Agribusiness Promotion Programme in Zambia and the revitalizing of the Sudan Gum Arabic.
afrol News - It is called "financial inclusion", and it is a key government policy in Rwanda. The goal is that, by 2020, 90 percent of the population is to have and actively use bank accounts. And in only four years, financial inclusion has doubled in Rwanda.
afrol News - The UN's humanitarian agencies now warn about a devastating famine in Sudan and especially in South Sudan, where the situation is said to be "imploding". Relief officials are appealing to donors to urgently fund life-saving activities in the two countries.
afrol News - Fear is spreading all over West Africa after the health ministry in Guinea confirmed the first Ebola outbreak in this part of Africa. According to official numbers, at least 86 are infected and 59 are dead as a result of this very contagious disease.
afrol News - It is already a crime being homosexual in Ethiopia, but parliament is now making sure the anti-gay laws will be applied in practical life. No pardoning of gays will be allowed in future, but activist fear this only is a signal of further repression being prepared.
afrol News / Africa Renewal - Ethiopia's ambitious plan to build a US$ 4.2 billion dam in the Benishangul-Gumuz region, 40 km from its border with Sudan, is expected to provide 6,000 megawatts of electricity, enough for its population plus some excess it can sell to neighbouring countries.