Centro de inversiones de la FAO

Enhancing cooperation

The Investment Centre has recently signed a cooperation agreement with IFAD
Women's council in the village of Dioro, Mali

The Organization's Investment Centre has been collaborating with IFAD for over 40 years, providing support on country strategy elaboration, design of investment projects, implementation support, capacity development and the production of joint knowledge products and events.

At the end of 2019, Dan Gustafson (DDG-P), and Donal Brown (Associate Vice-President, Programme Management Department, IFAD), signed a cooperation agreement aimed at strengthening this partnership.

Partnering with IFAD allows FAO to tap into one of the largest rural investment portfolios among the international financing institutions. This collaboration is substantial, with the Investment Centre supporting on average 43 percent of IFAD's operations.

The purpose of reinforcing this long-lasting collaboration is to enable the delivery of quality impact at scale in the common membership of countries. The two agencies are confident that combining FAO's strengths and comparative advantages - such as its capacity to generate and share knowledge, broad network, convening power and specialised experience and expertise on investment – with those of IFAD, will help us deliver better services and investments to our member countries.

The underpinning principle of this renewed partnership is joint work, learning and delivery. Since collaboration started, the Investment Centre and IFAD have shared financial resources, based on a cost-sharing arrangement dating back to 1977, commitment and results. For example, applying blended finance has been a major innovation for Mali's financial sector, where four out of five rural Malians do not have access to financial capital. An IFAD-funded and FAO supported financial inclusion project (now in its second phase), has provided 500,000 low-income rural Malians financial services to run small enterprises. In Bangladesh, FAO supported IFAD to design a project to make farming more profitable, focusing on high-value crops and climate-smart water management.

The new agreement establishes structured working arrangements that make it possible to better plan the use of staff time and manage resources in a programmatic way. It also foresees a closely monitored performance-based exercise under the principle of mutual accountability. For this, it calls on the Investment Centre and IFAD to exchange regular feedback with a view to enhancing overall project quality delivery and making the collaboration exemplary.

Did you know? IFAD's first project to be financed in 2020 was developed with FAO support. The commercialisation, agricultural productivity and nutrition project (COMPRAN) for Sao Tome and Principe, will sustainably improve incomes and food and nutritional security for smallholder producers, particularly women and young people.

Photo credit ©FAO/Jordi Vaque