CNFA and AMIR sign partnership to strengthen lending capacity of SACCOs

Cultivating New Frontiers in Agriculture, (CNFA), representing USAID-funded Feed the Future Rwanda Hinga Wunguke Activity, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Association of Microfinance Institutions in Rwanda (AMIR) to increase the incomes of farmers, Micro Small and Medium Enterprise (MSMEs) and cooperatives in agriculture sector/agribusiness.

The partnership will main include strengthening the offering and lending capabilities of SACCOs through staff training in areas that facilitate agriculture loan assessments /evaluation and development of appropriate/suitable financial products. The parts ave also agreed to create business models that address the needs of farmers, and MSMEs in the selected agriculture value chains targeted by the Hinga Wunguke in 13 districts of intervention.

Specifically, the partnership will look at the following areas:

Improve MFIs/SACCO’s understanding of specific agricultural value chain, financing gaps and opportunities through awareness and networking events.

Train farmers/MSMEs on prioritized value chains, facilitate greater financial literacy; understand financial operations (processes,) and loan requirements of MFIs and SACCOs.

Build capacity of MFI’s and SACCOs in agriculture value chain finance in areas such as risk analysis, loan appraisal /management, loan monitoring for Hinga Wunguke targeted value chains and strengthening their governance.

Support MFI’s and SACCOs to develop and implement new suitable /tailored financial products for targeted beneficiaries (smallholder farmers, farmer cooperatives, Agri MSMEs, market actors).Offer support and guidance to the MFI’s and SACCOs in piloting the implementation of the newly designed/reviewed products.

Support MFIs and SACCOs to monitor and track new lending, evaluate product performance, as well as monitoring the scale, outreach, and risks.

Support inclusion and the adoption of innovative ideas that would lead to increased lending to youth, women, and people with disabilities.

Collaborate in identifying new financing alternatives to enable climate change mitigation and adaptation in the agriculture value chains benefiting from MFI and SACCO lending.

Leverage available guarantee facilities to support SACCOs to access it and also access subsidized refinancing to increase lending rates and loan uptake in the agriculture value chain.

“This partnership with AMIR will enable us to support and empower many farmers through SACCO to enable them to gain financial literacy and improve their productivity, access to markets and incomes,” observed Daniel Gies, Chief of Party Hinga Wunguke.

“Working with Hinga Wunguke through this partnership with CNFA will boost our activities with SACCOs to gain financial literacy and support farmers,” observed the

CNFA is a not-for-profit organization based in Washington, D.C., dedicated to stimulating economic growth in the agricultural sector by nurturing entrepreneurship, private enterprise, and market linkages.

CNFA specializes in fostering private sector investments in training, new technologies, and marketing as a means to increase the overall competitiveness of agricultural value chains and rural development, increase people’s incomes, develop skills in the rural workforce, and facilitate exports.

CNFA co-implements USAID-funded Feed the Future Rwanda Hinga Wunguke Activity that promotes increased agricultural productivity and income, access to finance and markets, and access and consumption. Of nutritious food products, while increasing the resilience of the agriculture and food systems to the changing climate in 13 districts of intervention. To achieve this goal, the activity will sustainably increase agricultural productivity, increase access to finance for farmers and agribusiness, improve producers’ market outcomes, and strengthen the enabling environment to foster market-driven outcomes in agriculture.

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