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 will achieve 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 US Foreign Assistance Framework Program Areas: 4.2 Trade and Investment, 4.5 Agriculture, 4.6 Private Sector Competitiveness, and 4.7 Economic Opportunity.
In the months of July, August and September 2011, the project team continued technical implementation activities in the project focus areas and completed technical and administrative start-up activities that included project accreditation, recruitment of local staff, re-location to permanent project office space, procurement and installation of office equipment and furniture. Key activities and accomplishments during this period included:
- The AgroInvest Strategic Policy Priority Needs Paper was finalized and approved by USAID (Component 1, Task A)
- In a meeting with the Chairman of the Verkhovna Rada’s Committee for Agrarian Policy and Land, AgroInvest provided concrete recommendations to improve the draft Law on Land Market.
- An innovative approach to “Financing and Stabilizing Ukraine’s Emerging Land Market” was developed by AgroInvest to provide an alternative to bring stability and provide financing for the emerging land market in Ukraine.
- The Strategy for the Land Rights Public Education and Outreach Campaign was finalized and approved by USAID (Component 1, Task C).
- The Program for Delivering Sustainable Legal Land Rights Services was completed and approved by USAID (Component 1, Task C).
- The Small and Medium-Sized Producer Access to Finance Strategy and Action Plan was submitted for USAID approval (Component 2).
- To facilitate SMP financing through credit unions, and linkages between SMPs and markets, the project signed two Memoranda of Understanding (MoU) with leading national credit union associations: MoU with the National Association of Credit Unions (UNASCU) was signed on September 22, 2011 and MoU with the All-Ukrainian Association of Credit Unions (VAKS) and Deposit Guarantee Program (PZV) – on September 23, 2011.
- The Strategy for Implementing Agriculture Producer Organizations’ Capacity Building Program was finalized and submitted to USAID (Component 3, Task A).
- The Strategic Plan for Developing the Agriculture Produce Market Infrastructure was finalized and submitted to USAID (Component 3, Task B).
- Based on project assessments, the Crimea, Vinnitsa and Dnipropetrovsk regions were selected as AgroInvest focus geographic areas.
- On July 11-15, 2011, the project conducted a team building and Year 2 work planning workshop. As a result, the project finalized and submitted for approval the Year 2 Work Plan and updated PMP.
- The Project completed all registration procedures with the government and received accreditation from the Ministry of Economic Development and Trade on July 26, 2011.
- AgroInvest project team moved to its permanent office facilities at 4, Volodymyrska Street on August 19, 2011.
- On September 26, 2011 the project opened an office in Simferopil, Autonomous Republic of Crimea.
- AgroInvest developed and launched the bilingual Project web-site: www.agroinvest.org.ua