At a time when rural people in low-income countries are facing steep increases in food prices and the devastating effects of climate change are contributing to an increase in hunger and poverty, Canada announced today that it will increase its funding to the UN’s International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) to support the resilience of small-scale farmers and the prosperity of rural communities.
Harjit S. Sajjan, Canada’s Minister of International Development, announced today at a side event of the Tokyo Nutrition for Growth Summit that Canada will contribute an additional CA$37.5 million (roughly US$27.7 million) to IFAD’s Twelfth Replenishment, a three-year process in which the Member States commit funds to the organization for its work beginning in 2022. This is a 50% increase above the government’s initial commitment of CA$75 million (about US$55.5 million), increasing Canada’s total contribution to CA$112.5 million (around US$83.2 million).
In addition, Canada contributed a CA$340 million (about US$255 million) loan with exceptionally favorable terms to assist climate-smart and gender-sensitive agriculture techniques. Actions like these will help IFAD accomplish its pledge to double its impact by 2030 while also advancing toward the Sustainable Development Goals, particularly SDG #1 (no poverty) and SDG #2 (zero hunger).
IFAD will use the Canadian contribution to help finance its loan and grant programme, which is expected to total up to US$3.5 billion over the next three years. Through improved market access and rural financial services, nearly 110 million rural people will be able to enhance their production and income. It will also improve food security and nutrition for the world’s most vulnerable people, as well as promote climate resilience and contribute to job creation, particularly for women and youth.
The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) was founded by Canada. It has contributed more than US$551 million to the Fund’s core resources throughout the years, with an emphasis on women’s empowerment and gender equality, improved rural livelihoods, better nutrition, and climate adaption.
IFAD has become a leader in rural women’s empowerment thanks to Canada’s sustained support, with women now accounting for 50 percent of participants in IFAD-funded programmes and initiatives.
IFAD is a United Nations-affiliated international financial organization and specialized agency focused on ending rural poverty in developing nations. Its goal is to make agriculture, rural economies, and food systems more inclusive, productive, resilient to climate change, and long-term sustainability. Rural areas are home to eight out of ten of the world’s poorest people, and agriculture is their primary source of income.