Eswatini and IFAD partner to boost inclusive financial services for smallholder farmers
About 30,900 rural people in the Kingdom of Eswatini will benefit from a new US$38.5 million project that aims to improve the prosperity and resilience of poor and vulnerable smallholder farmers and micro-entrepreneurs in the country.
In Eswatini, 63 per cent of the population live in poverty and 89 per cent of the poor people, particularly young people and women, live in rural areas. It is essential to provide new livelihood opportunities through the development of the agricultural sector in rural areas.
The Financial Inclusion and Cluster Development Project aims to increase returns from sustainable farm and non-farm enterprises through investments in good agricultural practices – better quality seeds and irrigation systems – to improve productivity and production all year round. It will support producers to gain access to financial services and develop their business skills through training. The project will also promote gender and youth inclusion, and improve nutrition through greater access to diversified foods and higher incomes.