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Suriname to increase agriculture productivity with IDB support

A $15 million loan will strengthen its agricultural institutions and policies

The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) approved a $15 million policy based loan (PBL) to boost Suriname’s agricultural productivity by improving services and enhancing farmers access to them.

The agricultural sector is of particular importance, it accounts for 10 percent of total exports earnings of Suriname second only to mining, it employs 17 percent of the labor force and represents approximately 10 percent of the GDP. Despite its importance the sector’s productivity needs to improve productivity indicators, which are below the region’s average.

The program aims at reinforcing the country’s institutions and policies and improving the performance of public agricultural services. Among others, the project will help to modernize the data and information system, improve agricultural research and innovation, strengthen health and food safety policies, and develop sustainable fisheries.

The enhanced policies and services are expected to benefit more than 10,000 farmers and 1,450 fishers, and double the number of farmers access to improved irrigation, training and veterinary services.

The loan is the first in a series of three operations designed to support policy and institutional reforms through a programmatic approach. PBLs are fast-disbursing operations that provide IDB borrower governments with resources to finance priority programs, with results that must be verified as conditions for disbursements.

The IDB loan has a 20-year maturity, a 5.5-year grace period and an interest rate based on LIBOR.

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