Covid-19 Support: Parliament approves $20m for rural livelihood and food systems

Parliament has approved an amount of 20 million US dollars to finance the implementation of the Emergency Support to Rural Livelihood and Food Systems (ESRF) exposed to Covid-19.

The amount was procured under a financing agreement between the Government of Ghana and the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), with the goal to protect the livelihood and incomes of specific groups who have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

This also forms part of government’s measures to strengthen food systems and ensure a more inclusive, resilient and productive rural economy.

The terms of the loan are: the total amount of $20 million made up of a Loan Facility of $10 million and Blend of $10 million. The interest rate on loan is zero percent while that on Blend is 1.3 percent, Service charge on Loan is 1.31 percent whereas that on Blend is 1.33 percent. The Moratorium on Loan is 10 years whilst Blend is 5 years, a GNA report explained.

According to report by the Finance Committee of Parliament, the programme is meant to provide the Ghana cedi equivalent of $100 cash each to 5,000 vulnerable households to mitigate the impact of the pandemic on their livelihood.

“One of the projects which is to protect against hunger and build resilient livelihood was allocated $17,636,000. This is to provide 37,250 beneficiaries with timely access to inputs (seeds, fertilizers, etc) to increase production, support 5,000 vulnerable beneficiaries with direct cash transfer and rations to overcome hunger and prevent nutritional gaps,” Dr Assibey-Yeboah, Chairman of the Finance Committee of Parliament explained.

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