jeudi 6 mars 2014

Agricultural Investment and Market-Driven Project: New opportunities to support youth agri-businesses

Yoong farmer transporting pinneaples in Tanzania



The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MINADER) and World Bank and other local companies has reached an agreement to boost the production, processing and sale of cassava, sorghum and maize in the country. The institutions signed this march 4 to take off a five-year project (2014-2019) called “Agricultural Investment and market-Driven project (AIMDP) which seek to develop agribusiness in the country for a sustainable agricultural production both for the economy and livelihoods of the farmers. This consists in crop production (farming and contract farming), seed supply, agrichemicals, farms machinery, distribution, processing and retail of the products.

MINADER, thought this project is playing the role of reference, the World Bank providing funding, Ecobank as the financial partners and the International Institute for Tropical Agriculture (IITA) providing technical know-how. While the research institute for agricultural development IRAD is to provide high-yielding and disease-resistant seeds Guinness, Nestlé and other poultry production companies hope to have maize, sorghum and starch which they use as raw materials in their industries.

The Minister of agriculture mentioned that, it is unacceptable that these industries continually import these products and worsen the country’s trade balance when there are resources to boost local production. So thought this agribusiness-driven project, government wants to avoid a situation where farmers produce in bulk and lack markets for the products. With the convention, each cooperative to benefit from the funding has a specific quantity of the product to furnish to the desired industry. 

So Bakery owners, brewery companies and others users of the product concerned have expressed a demand of maize estimated at 200 000 tons, 30 000 tons for sorghum, 20 000 of cassava flour and about 10 000 tons of starch. Importing these raw materials is not only costly for the industries but detrimental to country’s trade balance whose persistent inbalance jeapardises the country’s emergences vision.
The World Bank Director of operation in Cameroon Gregor Binkert, said that, the bank’s board of direction will examine the projects file next April.

This ceremony gives opportunities to Cameroonian to learn from IITA experience on how similar project worked in Nigeria

Analysis

This is a new opportunities for youth to find a solution about the financial problem they encounter to implement their agri-project. Via MINADER they will no longer need any guarantee before access credit. Based on the viability of project about 250 small business project will be selected with about 80% of project carry out by women and youth. We just affraid that this new project failed like past one due to embezzle or deviation of the mains target of this project. So if this project is to promote agriculture in order to meet Cameroon economic emergency goals in 2035, youth must be at center of this and must be implicated at all stage of its implantation even its management.  So if you have an idea in agricultural sector, please prepare your application until September 2014 and submit it at any MINADER regional offices around the country.

Photo SNV