US$20m loan boosts rural livelihoods in Malawi

News and Press Release
Originally published
View original

December 23, 2020: The OPEC Fund for International Development (the OPEC Fund) has signed a US$20 million development loan agreement with Malawi to improve the livelihoods of around 1.3 million people living in rural areas.

The financing will support the ‘Transforming Agriculture through Diversification and Entrepreneurship’ program, aligning with Sustainable Development Goal 2 on food security, improved nutrition and sustainable agriculture. The objective is to strengthen value chains and improve the resilience and capacity of Malawi’s smallholder farmers and rural organizations. The program will provide better infrastructure (including new roads) and access to rural financial solutions, as well as enhanced partnerships with the private sector and inclusive business development services. Climate smart interventions will help combat land degradation and improve agricultural productivity.

The program supports Malawi’s National Agriculture Policy (NAP), which intends to achieve sustainable agricultural transformation to drive growth in the agricultural sector, expanding incomes for farm households, improving food and nutrition security for all Malawians, and boosting agricultural exports.

The OPEC Fund is co-financing the program with the International Fund for Agricultural Development as well as private sector enterprises, beneficiaries and the government of Malawi. To date, the OPEC Fund has approved 22 loans in Malawi for a total of more than US$207 million. The approved finance relates to operations in the health, agriculture, transport, education, and water and sanitation sectors.

About the OPEC Fund

The OPEC Fund for International Development (the OPEC Fund) works in cooperation with developing country partners and the international development community to stimulate economic growth and social progress in low- and middle-income countries around the world. The organization was established by the member countries of OPEC in 1976 with a distinct mandate: to drive development, strengthen communities and empower people. The OPEC Fund’s work is people-centered, focusing on financing projects that meet essential needs, such as food, energy, infrastructure, employment (particularly relating to MSMEs), clean water and sanitation, healthcare and education. Our vision is a world where sustainable development is a reality for all.