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Governor Marcelo Déda Chagas meets with IFAD Vice-President to push project forward

A high-level Brazilian delegation met with International Fund For Agricultural Development (IFAD) Vice-President Yukiko Omura, IFAD’s Director of Latin America and the Caribbean Division Josefina Stubbs and other senior IFAD staff October 12 to hammer out details of the new US$37.8 million Small Producers Rural Business Project, better known in Brazil as Project Dom Tavora.

The Brazilian delegation included Sergipe Governor Marcelo Déda Chagas, Secretary of Agriculture and Agrarian Development José Macedo Sobral and the President and Director of the Agricultural Development Agency Jefferson Feitozza de Carvalho.

“This project looks to fight rural poverty in a sustainable way by helping businesses and small-scale producers to improve their productivity and technical capabilities, and access new markets and financial services,” said Iván Cossio, IFAD Country Program Manager for Brazil. “At the same time, we are looking to build the technical capacity within the vary agencies that will be implementing the project, thus ensuring the project’s long-term viability.”

During the visit, the governor gave a presentation to IFAD staff on the Brazil Without Extreme Poverty Program (Brasil Sem Miseria), underlining how the national program works in the state of Sergipe and how it could work in conjunction with new IFAD-funded projects in the region.

“Finding ways to effectively coordinate IFAD-funded programs with these massive government programs will be key to ensuring strong results on the ground and long-term sustainability for these initiatives,” Cossio said.

The Dom Tavora Project is slated to benefit some 32,000 poor rural families in 15 municipalities in the State of Sergipe. Approximately 12,000 families will receive direct support from the project while another 20,000 will benefit from the improved technical assistance offered by the implementing agency.

The IFAD Executive Board is expected to review the project this December. The project benefits from a US$16 million IFAD loan to the State of Sergipe, with the Government of Sergipe providing another US$12.6 million. Project beneficiaries will provide another US$9.2 million in financing.

“The Sergipe Project is especially innovative as its principal strategy is based in catalysing and stimulating growth for businesses run by small-scale producers. Given the right support, these small-scale producers are capable of creating efficient, sustainable and profitable businesses,” Cossio said. “And as we’ve seen throughout the world, treating agriculture as a business is one of the most effective means to reduce rural poverty.”
Photos: ©IFAD/Publifoto