The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the Government of Rwanda through Rwanda Development Board (RDB), have signed a Technical Cooperation Programme Project (TCP/RWA/3706) aimed to digitalize commerce in agricultural value chains.
The two-year project “Support Local suppliers’ capacity development and promotion of online trading in Rwanda”, will strengthen the capacities of Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) to be more competitive and link them with big buyers both in and outside Rwanda.
The intervention will target three selected agriculture value chains; Horticulture, Livestock and agribusiness. The project is also exploring innovations in agriculture to support Rwanda’s efforts towards a cashless economy.
Rwanda this year will hand out electronic gadgets like phones and tablets that will be used to connect farmers with updated agriculture information, but also enable reporting of corruption among other challenges on ground.
The move comes as part of agriculture Ministry’s response to demands by farmers who have showed in two research findings a lack of information on the market and inputs as a main challenge in the sector.
Agriculture is seen as a backbone for Rwanda’s economy – employing over 80% of the population.
On March 11, 2020, Kirehe, President Paul Kagame inaugurated Nasho Irrigation Scheme, a center pivot irrigation project that has been developed in Nasho Sector of Kirehe District by the Government of Rwanda in partnership with the Howard G. Buffet Foundation (HGBF) to modernize Rwanda’s agriculture sector and specifically improve smallholder farmers’ livelihoods.
In addition, 144 houses (36 houses that are four-in-one) to resettle households from areas under pivot irrigation, and farm buildings were constructed thanks to this project. About 24 km of existing roads within the project area were also widened and resurfaced and about 10 km of new roads created, which made it easy for installation of irrigation systems as well as transportation of inputs and produce.
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