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May 2020
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Dear RFILC members,

To begin with, we would like to present you a study "Artificial Intelligence in Agribusiness is Growing in Emerging Markets", conducted by the IFC on Business models utilizing artificial intelligence. The study proves that Artificial Intelligence (AI) can improve market access to facilitate smallholder farmer integration into regional and global supply chains. At the meantime, AI technologies also extend financial services to underserved farmers.

Remittances are particularly important in times of crisis, whether it be a family crisis, local economic crisis or global crisis like the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Yet insurance products that enable the sustained flow of remittances or the resilience of senders and receivers remain unexplored in sub-Saharan Africa.  Both remittance senders and receivers face unexpected risk events that have adverse effects on their livelihoods. The second highlight of the month is a technical note from Cenfri that outlines the importance of remittance-linked insurance products.

In addition, we would like to draw your attention to the GSMA AgriTech Toolkit for the Digitisation of Agricultural Value Chains on how digital technologies can address pain points in the agricultural last mile for farmers and value chain actors, such as agribusinesses and cooperatives. The toolkit explains how digitizing the last mile offers a pathway to financial inclusion for farmers.

By closing this month's highlight, we would like to introduce you direct and indirect investment opportunities from Agri-Business Capital Fund (ABC Fund), an independent private impact investment fund sponsored by IFAD that  invests in smallholder farmers and rural small and medium-sized enterprises in developing countries to support sustainable and inclusive agricultural value chains.

With best regards,

The RFILC Editorial Team

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The Rural Finance and Investment Learning Centre is a part of the CABFIN Partnership Project which aims to promote and facilitate capacity building in rural finance. The concerns of rural finance are to ensure that people living in rural areas have access to financial services such as deposit and money transfer facilities, insurance and loan products. Effective use of these services can help to improve livelihoods and reduce rural poverty. The following CABFIN Partners have provided financial support to the RFILC:

CABFIN Partnership

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