IFAD to provide US$43 million to Viet Nam to raise rural incomes and increase resilience to climate change

A farmer stands along the Mekong delta in Tra Vinh province, Viet Nam. The country has benefitted from substantial economic growth – lifting almost 30 million people out of poverty over the last two decades. However, economic development in the country has contributed to income inequity and environmental degradation. ©IFAD/Susan Beccio
A farmer stands along the Mekong delta in Tra Vinh province, Viet Nam. The country has benefitted from substantial economic growth – lifting almost 30 million people out of poverty over the last two decades. However, economic development in the country has contributed to income inequity and environmental degradation. ©IFAD/Susan Beccio

Rome, 24 March 2017 – The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and the Government of Viet Nam signed a financial agreement today to raise incomes and the living standards of 30,000 rural households in the north-east of the country.

IFAD is providing US$43 million towards the $74.3 million loan, which is co-financed by the Government of Viet Nam ($20.6 million) and the beneficiaries themselves ($10.7 million).

The agreement was signed by Kanayo F. Nwanze, President of IFAD, and Thien Cao Chinh, Ambassador of Viet Nam to Italy.

The Commercial Smallholder Support Project in B¿c Kan and Cao B¿ng  aims to improve the access of farmers and rural labourers to commodity and labour markets and increase the rural poor’s capacity to adapt to the effects of a changing climate.

“The provinces of B¿c Kan and Cao B¿ng are among the poorest in Viet Nam. People living there have almost total dependence on subsistence farming,” said Henning Pedersen, IFAD Country Programme Manager for Viet Nam.

“Approximately 90 per cent of each rural person’s total spending goes towards meeting basic needs. These people are vulnerable to unforeseen expenses, climate shocks and the degradation of land and water resources,” Pedersen added.

Viet Nam has benefitted from substantial economic growth – lifting almost 30 million people out of poverty over the last two decades. However, economic development in the country has contributed to income inequity and environmental degradation. Rural areas have less than half the average per capita income of urban areas but almost three times the poverty rate. Agriculture accounts for more than 70 per cent of employment in the project provinces of B¿c Kan and Cao B¿ng.

The project will support rural farmers to access finance, business and technical training, as well as improved infrastructure, such as rural roads, to support their access to markets and commodity chains, which increase the value of agricultural products.

There is a significant market demand and commercial opportunities for improved quality and production of a range of agricultural products including forestry and non-timber forest products; meat, eggs and dairy; fruit, ginger, cassava and peanuts; as well as opportunities to develop ecotourism.

Since 1993, IFAD has extended loans to Viet Nam for 15 programmes and projects totalling $377.5 million reaching over 709,070 of the poorest rural households.

Press release No.: IFAD/24/2017

IFAD invests in rural people, empowering them to reduce poverty, increase food security, improve nutrition and strengthen resilience. Since 1978, we have provided about US$18.5 billion in grants and low-interest loans to projects that have reached some 464 million people. IFAD is an international financial institution and a specialized United Nations agency based in Rome – the UN’s food and agriculture hub.