IFAD to Support Rural Development Project in Project in Republic of Yemen

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IFAD to Support Rural Development Project in Project in Republic of Yemen

Press release number: IFAD 06/03

Rome, 18 February 2003 - A loan agreement was signed today at the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) headquarters by H.E. Ahmed Salem Al Jabali, Minister of Agriculture and Irrigation and by Mr. Lennart Båge, President of IFAD. The loan, in an amount of USD 14.01 million, will help fund the ‘Dhamar Participatory Rural Development Project’, with a total cost of USD 22.66 million.

In the remote rural areas of Yemen, natural resources are limited and there are inadequate facilities and services, which are the main contributing factors of rural poverty. In Dhamar, 70% of the population lives in highland, rainfed villages and entire communities live in conditions of poverty, in some cases unchanged for hundreds of years. Women are the main livestock rearers, agricultural producers and household and family managers but they have serious constraints due to illiteracy, limited ownership rights and restricted participation in social and civic affairs. Beneficiaries of the project will be households living below the poverty line in seven western mountain districts of Jabal Al-Sharq, Maghrib Ans, Utmah, Wusab Al-Ali, Wusab Al-Safil, Manar and the remote areas of Dawran in addition to the districts of Hada, Ans and Jahran. About 55 632 households in 3 127 villages in all will benefit.

Many crops such as cotton, grapes, papaya, coffee, sesame, saffron, dyes, groundnut and medicinal plants (an untapped market) hold promise of improved productivity and have good economic and technical potential for further growth.

The overall goal of this Rural Development Project is to enhance food security for subsistence farmers, raise family incomes and improve the living conditions and development participation of small farm households and village communities in Dhamar. To that end, the project aims to: empower communities, including women and the poor, to participate and gain direct benefit from development planning and project execution; to remove critical physical, infrastructural and social constraints to productivity and advancement; to equip and support farming households with a view to increasing their output enabling them to secure basic food supplies, and pursue income-generating activities.

With this project, IFAD will have financed 16 projects in the Republic of Yemen, for a total loan amount of USD -134 million.

IFAD is a specialized agency of the United Nations with the specific mandate of combating hunger and poverty in the most disadvantaged regions of the world. Since 1978 IFAD has financed 628 projects in 115 recipient countries and in the West Bank and Gaza for a total commitment of approximately USD 7.9 billion in loans and grants. Through these projects, about 250 million rural people have had a chance to move out of poverty. IFAD makes the greater part of its resources available to low-income countries on very favorable terms, with up to 40 years for repayment and including a grace period of up to ten years and a service charge of 0.75% per year.