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AfDB invests over $50m in Egyptian agriculture

The project is expected to improve 125,000 acres of soil using efficient drainage, which will result in higher crop productivity by 15% to 20% on selected crops.

The African Development Bank (AfDB) has approved a €50.20 million loan to support Egypt’s National Drainage programme (NDP) to boost agricultural production and household income generation.

NDP aims to optimise the benefits of irrigation by draining excess irrigation water from agricultural land. The project is expected to improve 125,000 acres of soil using efficient drainage, which will result in increasing crop productivity by 15 to 21 percent for selected crops. Farm income is also expected by climb 40 percent for a typical one-acre farm, according to AfDB.

NDP is currently at its third phase; phases I and II were financed by the World Bank, German development bank KfW and the European Investment Bank. The third phase is being financed by the AfDB, Islamic Development Bank (€28.60 million) , KfW and the European Union (€50 million), according to a project fact sheet released by AfDB.

“The primary beneficiaries will be the farming households in the project areas,” AfDB said in a statement. The beneficiaries will be approximately 125,000 households or 625,000 people.

In May, AfDB announced that it is seeking capital from Brazil, Argentina, China and India to invest across the continent’s agriculture sector.

Between 1968 and 2014, the bank approved approximately $14.78 billion in funding for 876 operations to support agriculture and rural development.