WORLD BANK APPROVES US$ 30 MILLION FOR LIBERIA’S RICE PRODUCTION
Following three months of virtual negotiations with the Government of Liberia through the Ministry of Agriculture, the World Bank has swiftly approved additional financing of US$ 30 – just nine days to the close of the year 2022, December 22, 2022 – to boost rice production in Liberia.
Agriculture Minister Jeanine M. Cooper greeted the news with excitement as donor’s vote of confidence in Liberia. She said, “This is a significant boost to the Liberian agricultural sector and a major milestone achieved by the administration of His Excellency President George Manneh Weah who has been passionate and practical to ensuring that we increase local production of our staple food rice. “We commend one of our cherished donor partners – the World Bank – for this approval.”, Minister Cooper said. The Bank’s statement said this financing comes from its Crisis Response Window – Early Response Financing.
It will ensure that the Liberia Rural Economic Transformation Project (RETRAP) benefits an additional 36,000 households, thereby increasing the total number of beneficiary households by 60%, from 60,000 to 96,000”. “The recent global food crisis resulting from various global shocks such as the Russia-Ukraine war and climate change has underscored the need for Liberia to address the issue of food security. I am glad that this additional financing will support rice production which is critical to food security in Liberia”, said Khwima Nthara, World Bank Country Manager for Liberia.
With funding from the World Bank, RETRAP is a project being executed by the MOA since January 2022 will provide support, financial grants and other inputs to assist poultry, piggery and other livestock and rubber farmers across the country.
The project has begun aggressively engaging those livestock actors to tailor impactful support which will assist Liberia in reducing its dependency on imported poultry and meat products that account for more than US$ 25 million dollars annually.
Under the is project, the MOA successfully negotiated US$ 30 million funding to do a 40 km road to link Nimba (Tappita) to the Ivorian border Grand Gedeh (Toe Town). Preparatory works in progress with the Ministry of Public Works.