The purpose of AgroInvest is to provide technical assistance to accelerate and broaden economic recovery in Ukraine and increase the country’s contribution to global food security efforts. AgroInvest is achieving this objective by supporting a stable, market-oriented agricultural policy environment, stimulating access to financial services for small and medium producers (SMPs), and facilitating a more effective market infrastructure for SMPs.
The scope of work identifies three main components, refined into six tasks, as follows:
- Component 1: Support a Stable, Market-Oriented Environment
Task 1-a: Accelerate Market Oriented Reforms
Task 1-b: Strengthen Industry Associations
Task 1-c: Provide Public Education for Land Rights
- Component 2: Stimulate Access to Finance
Task 2-a: Sustainable Access to Financial Services for SMPs Provided
- Component 3: Facilitate Market Infrastructure for Small and Medium Producers
Task 3-a: Producer Organization Development
Task 3-b: Develop Wholesale Markets and Other Market Infrastructure
AgroInvest is a five-year project, extending to an estimated completion date of January 24, 2016. The scope of this project encompasses the following U.S. Foreign Assistance Framework Program Areas: 4.2 Trade and Investment, 4.5 Agriculture, 4.6 Private Sector Competitiveness, and 4.7 Economic Opportunity.
In January-March 2013, the AgroInvest project team continued technical implementation activities in the project focus areas. Key activities and accomplishments during this period included the following:
- Selected five agricultural industry associations through a competitive process for grant awards to build their capacity in advocacy and agricultural policy analysis.
- Scaled up the Legal Land Rights Services Program to help citizens understand and protect their land rights. The program is operational at the national level (through the Land Rights Resource Center and Web-portal project) and in eight oblasts of Ukraine (through grant agreements with four providers of secondary legal land rights services).
- Presented the Market Survey on the current status of agrilending to SMPs to the Ukrainian financing community and SMP-agribusinesses.
- Conducted the final training sessions on enhancing technologies of lending to SMPs via credit unions (including the launch of the system of trainings for trainers development, and actual trainings conducted by the trainers).
- Developed two new innovative credit products for credit unions (bee keeping and mini-dryer for drying fruits and herbs financing).
- Scaled up the Land Rights Public Education and Outreach Campaign.
- Completed the analytical phase of the Baseline Survey on Land Rights Awareness, Small- and Medium-scale Agricultural Producers Access to Finance, and Agricultural Market Infrastructure. The analytical report will be ready in April 2013 followed by a wide discussion of the findings through a series of roundtables.
- Conducted the final training event for credit union trainers. In total, 14 trainers were trained to train their colleagues from other CUs and agri-producers on agrilending and access to finance (risk assessment, sales and marketing of the credit offer, agroinsurance use etc.) on the basis of didactic materials developed by AgroInvest. As a result, these trainers conducted 18 seminars for credit union officers and agriculture producers, which included approximately 300 trainees.
- Law of Ukraine on Amendments to the Law of Ukraine on Agricultural Cooperation #11221 developed with the support of the AgroInvest Project was approved in whole by the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine on November 20, 2012 and endorsed by the President of Ukraine, and officially promulgated on January 19, 2013 (Law of Ukraine #5495-VI dated November 20, 2012).
- Conducted the third round of the post-harvest handling and logistics grant program, which resulted in four producer organizations’ selection.