The African Development Bank has provided a €990,000 grant to help smaller agro-processing businesses increase productivity and quality control, with funding from the Italian Technical Cooperation Fund.
The project will help enterprises better access national and regional markets and take advantage of the African Continental Free Trade Area’s prospects. The implementing agency is the Mozambican Confederation of Business Associations.
We are delighted to receive this grant from the African Development Bank and the Italian Technical Cooperation Fund, which will benefit approximately 300 agro-processing and agribusiness Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) associations in Mozambique, particularly youth and women-led SMEs operating along the development corridors of Nacala-Beira-Pemba-Lichinga, said Dr. Agostinho Vuma, President of the Agricultural Development Bank of Mozambique.
The grant is likely to strengthen the intense bilateral relations in agriculture that have been built through the many projects funded by Italian cooperation, and it can act as a catalyst to extend it to the private sector, where there is a vast and largely untapped potential, according to Italian Ambassador Dr. Gianni Bardini.
Dr. Pietro Toigo, the African Development Bank’s country manager in Mozambique, said the grant will be important in helping the country deal with the socioeconomic issues faced by the Covid-19 outbreak. We are pleased to collaborate with the CTA and the Italian government to assist Mozambican SMEs in recovering from the COVID pandemic and increasing their competitiveness, as part of the African Development Bank’s commitment to help Industrialize Africa and Mozambique, he said.
The project contributes to Mozambique’s Country Strategy Paper (2018-2022), which focuses on two key pillars: infrastructural investments that enable inclusive growth and employment creation, and agricultural transformation and value chain development.
Dr. Carlos Alberto Fortes Mesquita, Minister of Industry and Trade, emphasised the significance of such efforts and their catalytic role in boosting Mozambique’s agriculture modernization and the industrialization of crucial areas of the economy.
The Bank has granted a $1 million grant to support local content and the growth of small and medium enterprise projects.