IFAD invests 8 bln USD in rural areas in 2022: report

Xinhua, July 18, 2023
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The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), a specialized agency of the United Nations (UN), invested a record 7.96 billion U.S. dollars in rural development in developing countries in 2022, the institution said in its annual report published on Monday.

The challenges IFAD had to confront last year included stresses caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the impacts of climate change, and the effects of the conflict between Russia and Ukraine.

"2022 was a particularly challenging year for rural people the world over," IFAD President Alvaro Lario wrote in the report's foreword. "Rural communities have acutely felt the effects of this triple crisis on their food systems," which are a critical source of livelihoods and essential nourishment, he said.

Lario said IFAD's work, which often focuses on hard-to-reach parts of developing countries, was essential for people living in those areas to build resilient food systems that can withstand crises.

According to the report, 90 percent of the core resources spent last year went to low-income and lower-middle-income countries, in which IFAD had vowed to spend all its resources on projects going forward.

Last year's data also showed that due in part to IFAD's projects between 2019 and 2021, which leveraged participation to expand the impacts with local stakeholders, more than 77 million rural people increased their income, more than 62 million people expanded their productive capacities, and over 64 million people gained better access to markets for their products.

But the challenge remains large, the report said, noting that the world "has fallen off track in its ambition to end poverty and hunger by 2030" as set out in the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

IFAD is one of three UN food-related agencies based in Rome, Italy.