To improve the living conditions of the rural poor, the International Fund for Agricultural Development in 2009 focused its efforts on three areas: results, reach and reform.
IFAD-backed projects are showing tangible results, according to Kanayo Nwanze, the United Nations agency’s president. Last year, IFAD completed 52 projects and had an ongoing portfolio of 185 projects directly supervised by the organization. Most new projects in 2009, Nwanze said, were approved with a direct supervision arrangement.
The agency also approved the establishment of 27 country offices in 31 countries by the end of 2009, 25 of which were already operational.
In terms of reach, IFAD’s portfolio grew by 19 percent in 2009. The agency approved USD717.5 million in grants and loans in the past year, of which disbursements reached a record high of USD437.5 million. For 2010, IFAD has at its disposal some USD800 million, a 12 percent increase from the 2009 level.
The organization is looking at delivering a program of work worth some USD3 billion from 2010 to 2012.
“This will allow us to reach some 60 million poor rural men and women, enabling them to grow and sell more food, increase their incomes and determine the direction of their own lives,” Nwanze said in the 2009 IFAD annual report.
In reforming the institution, Nwanze said the focus is to make IFAD an “efficient, effective and agile” institution. He noted the agency’s efforts to make the decision-making process more transparent and inclusive.
The agency is also reforming its human resources management system to strengthen its “on-ground delivery of innovative assistance.”
Nwanze said: “We have initiated a strategic workforce planning process to allow us to understand better what changes are needed in order to realize our vision for IFAD’s workforce in 2015.”
This year will be “crucial in laying solid foundations for our expanded programme of work,” his message in the report read. Nwanze said IFAD’s strategic framework for 2007-2010 will provide the “basis for developing our relationship with middle income countries, and for defining our response to fragile states in emergency situations, such as Haiti.”