The African Development Bank (AfDB) has signed a Two hundred million dollars ($200 million) Soft Commodity Finance Facility (SCFF) Agreement with the Export Trading Group (ETG). According to a statement from the AfDB on Thursday 12th April, the facility is structured to run as two (2) successive facilities of $100 million dollars each with a tenor of two years. Seventeen African countries will benefit from this facility. The target beneficiaries are local farmers and Soft commodity manufacturers while the target market is the export market.
“The intervention will help local farmers and soft commodity suppliers grow their revenues and produce quality crops for export. Specifically, the facility will be used to finance the procurement of identified agricultural commodities from over 600,000 farmers.
“Upon purchase of the soft commodities, the SCFF will provide working capital to ETC thus enabling the company engage in processing of the soft commodities such as cashew nuts prior to export.
“The SCFF will also provide funding to procure farm inputs to be supplied to farmers so as to ensure consistency and quality of the commodities being supplied to ETC.
“This Trade Finance intervention along the agricultural value chain will enable the Bank to reach many small-scale farmers indirectly through ETC,’’ the bank said. This facility would contribute to improving food production in Africa in addition to value addition. Smallholder farmers will have the opportunity to access inputs like Seeds, Fertilizers, agro-chemicals and also enable farmers have access to international markets.
Belvyna Group believes this facility will boost local agricultural production for the export market. The sustainability is however key to growth of local production and farmers’ incomes. The employment generation is crucial to reducing unemployment of youths in many countries in Africa.