`World Bank Investing Nearly €30B to Improve Global Food Security - Olive Oil Times

World Bank Investing Nearly €30B to Improve Global Food Security

By Paolo DeAndreis
Jun. 15, 2022 12:10 UTC

A major global ini­tia­tive to strengthen food secu­rity has been announced by the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development.

In the next 15 months, the World Bank will deploy more than €28 bil­lion in a wide array of projects that fund farm­ing devel­op­ment, cover vul­ner­a­ble house­holds against ris­ing food prices and water man­age­ment and irri­ga­tion projects.

Countries should make con­certed efforts to increase the sup­ply of energy and fer­til­izer, help farm­ers increase plant­i­ngs and crop yields and remove poli­cies that block exports and imports.- David Malpass, pres­i­dent, World Bank Group

The bank said a por­tion of the invest­ment would also sup­port farm­ers and facil­i­tate trade.

The goal of the fund­ing is to strengthen global food sys­tems to make them more sus­tain­able and resilient to risks posed by extreme weather events, pathogens and dis­eases, con­flicts and trade dis­rup­tions.

See Also:Ukraine Crisis Calls for Shift Away from Organic Farming, Syngenta CEO Says

Bank offi­cials also warned that the global food cri­sis is wors­en­ing.

Food price increases are hav­ing dev­as­tat­ing effects on the poor­est and most vul­ner­a­ble,” said David Malpass, the World Bank Group pres­i­dent. To inform and sta­bi­lize mar­kets, it is crit­i­cal that coun­tries make clear state­ments now of future out­put increases in response to Russia’s inva­sion of Ukraine.”

Countries should make con­certed efforts to increase the sup­ply of energy and fer­til­izer, help farm­ers increase plant­i­ngs and crop yields and remove poli­cies that block exports and imports, divert food to bio­fuel or encour­age unnec­es­sary stor­age,” he added.

The World Bank is cur­rently imple­ment­ing an €11 bil­lion invest­ment plan with its part­ner coun­tries. These funds are ear­marked for cur­tail­ing the food secu­rity cri­sis.

At the 1996 World Food Summit, del­e­gates approved a def­i­n­i­tion of food secu­rity which defined the term as when all peo­ple, at all times, have phys­i­cal and eco­nomic access to suf­fi­cient, safe and nutri­tious food that meets their dietary needs and food pref­er­ences for an active and healthy life.”

The bank’s first por­tion of the funds will mostly go to Africa and the Middle East, Eastern Europe, Central Asia, and South Asia.

Another €17.4 bil­lion comes from the bank’s exist­ing port­fo­lio focused on projects related to food and nutri­tion secu­rity issues, cov­er­ing agri­cul­ture and nat­ural resources, nutri­tion, social pro­tec­tion and other sec­tors.

This response will draw on the full range of bank financ­ing instru­ments and be com­ple­mented by ana­lyt­i­cal work,” the World Bank said.

The insti­tu­tion added how the expe­ri­ence of the 2007/08 global food price cri­sis allowed the bank to develop new pro­grams, which funded more than 100 projects in 49 coun­tries to coun­ter­act the worst effect of the cri­sis.

The World Bank also hosts the Global Agriculture and Food Security Program (GAFSP), which is an exist­ing finan­cial inter­me­di­ary fund ded­i­cated to improv­ing food secu­rity in low-income coun­tries and could be replen­ished to help fund the response to the cur­rent global food cri­sis,” the bank said.

Born in 1944 as a finan­cial tool to fund post-World War II recon­struc­tion, the World Bank has evolved into a multi-pur­pose global finan­cial insti­tu­tion deeply involved in food sys­tems.

Among the many projects financed by the bank, some are directed toward olive grow­ing projects in devel­op­ing coun­tries, fight­ing the obe­sity epi­demic, pro­mot­ing health and coun­ter­ing the worst effects of cli­mate change.

In the past 70 years, the World Bank has seen its finan­cial com­mit­ment grow from €463 mil­lion in loans reported in 1947 to €56 bil­lion in 2015. Its so-called twin goals” include end­ing extreme poverty by 2030 and boost­ing the shared pros­per­ity of the poor­est 40 per­cent of the pop­u­la­tion in all coun­tries.


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