AgroInvest is a five-year project (2011-2016) funded by USAID/Ukraine. The purpose of the Project is to provide technical assistance to accelerate and broaden economic recovery in Ukraine through support to the agriculture sector and increase the country’s contribution to global food security efforts. The contract is a Cost Plus Fixed Fee Term-type, Level-of-Effort contract with a ceiling of $18,755,641.
Project Scope of Work
AgroInvest will accelerate broad-based economic recovery through a more inclusive and competitive agricultural industry. AgroInvest is designed around three separate but interrelated component objectives, each supported by specific expected results under each component as illustrated below in the Results Framework.
Component 1 activities involve both a supply- and demand-side approach to supporting a stable, market-oriented policy environment. From the supply side, AgroInvest will promote the implementation of less volatile, more market-oriented policies that stimulate increased production and investments in the agricultural sector. On the demand side, Component 1 activities will strengthen the capacity of industry associations to shape agricultural policies and provide public education on land rights among rural landowners. Under Component 2, AgroInvest will stimulate access to finance by strengthening partnerships between financial service providers and value chain actors, including input suppliers and buyers, to increase sustainable access to financial services for small and medium producers (SMPs). Finally, Component 3 activities will create a more effective market infrastructure for SMPs and increase the profitability of farming through better access to markets, the development of wholesale and regional markets, and capacity building for producer organizations (POs).
Project Results Framework
The USAID Ukraine Country Development Cooperation Strategy (CDCS) has set the Mission’s goal for the period from 2012 through 2016 as A More Stable, Democratic, and Prosperous Ukraine. AgroInvest is contributing to achievement of that overarching goal and more specifically supports CDCS Development Objective (DO) 2 formulated as “Broad-Based, Resilient Economic Development as a Means to Sustain Ukrainian Democracy.” In particular, the Project supports this DO by contributing to achieving IR 2.1: “Increased Investment Availability to the Emerging Middle Class” and IR 2.2 “Strengthened Private Sector Advocacy and Support Institutions.” Attainment of component objectives will allow AgroInvest to contribute to achieving both the Mission’s goal and the AgroInvest Project’s defined purpose of accelerating broad-based economic recovery in Ukraine through support to the agricultural sector.
Broad-based economic growth is dependent upon creating physical and managerial infrastructures and institutions that encourage business activity creation and development, attract investment, and create employment opportunities. AgroInvest is focusing on this growth through working closely with local small and medium sized producers (SMPs) and producer organizations to develop their capacities in the areas of business planning and application of modern agro technological methods that increase productivity as well as the quality and quantity of produce. Additionally to this, the Project works closely with financial institutions to stimulate access to finance so that the SMPs can acquire the funding they require for their agricultural activities.
In addition to economically focused activities, AgroInvest focuses on activities that build citizen and civil society capacity to meaningfully influence the development and monitoring of government polices at the national and local levels. As better governance can only be achieved through active participation of a broad range of diverse Ukrainian citizens, AgroInvest works with non-governmental organizations to build their capacities to be able to better advocate for their and their constituents’ interests. The industry associations with which the Project partners with play a critical role in counterbalancing the influence of elite economic and political forces. Through AgroInvest’s national public education and outreach campaign, even the most rural of citizens are being provided valuable information that allows them to protect and understand their property rights.
Furthermore, to ensure that inclusive development approaches are practiced across all of its activities, AgroInvest continues to engage marginalized groups to the fullest extent possible. This includes but is not limited to working with partner credit unions in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea to focus on increasing financing opportunities for ethnic minority Tatar farmers, conducting targeted trainings for rural female farmers to increase their business acumen and agricultural skill sets, and ensuring that the wholesale and retail markets we are supporting the development of include design elements that accommodate persons with disabilities.
The Project’s monitoring and evaluation (M&E) system, included in the Performance Monitoring Plan (PMP), is designed to measure and report on progress against these objectives and expected results using 35 indicators. These indicators and their associated annual and life-of-project targets are listed in the table shown in the PMP chart (Annex A). It is noted that the Project’s PMP plan was updated in Year 3 in response to the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) performance audit the Project underwent in September/October 2012.