By HOMELAND MEDIA TEAM
The aBI Trust fund will also increase resilience to climate variability, climate mitigation actions to reduce or limit greenhouse gas emissions; stronger local environment, including soils, ecosystems and bio-diversity.
With this fund aBi will support partnerships through green agribusiness investments for climate change adaptation, mitigation and biodiversity conservation to further contribute to economic growth, job creation and improved incomes,” said Mona Muguma-Ssebuliba, the aBi CEO.
“This fund will also promote the development of methods and systems that address green challenges in agriculture and to promote a green agri- food system. We kick-off this fund with shs7.5 billion as a pilot but our vision is to scale it up to shs 20 billion by 2023, to further impact more SMEs and smallholder farmers and the supported agricultural value chains.”
She noted that, Uganda’s agriculture is evidently experiencing a rapid decline in its growth rate mainly because of the effects of climate change, and the population’s dependence on agriculture combined with changing climate patterns and unsustainable land management contributes to the country’s position as the 12th most vulnerable to climate change globally.
“This vulnerability will worsen if Uganda continues with its high levels of unsustainable natural resource utilization,” she said.
Felix Okoboi, the chairperson of the aBi board noted that there is need to do something to mitigate climate change effects on Ugandan farmers.
“The drastic change in our weather patterns and climate is a clear signal that no one should sit back and wait for the government or development partners to do something about the adverse impact of climate change. The challenge to reduce the impact of climate change as we seek to positively impact our communities through agriculture starts with us and is now in high gear,”Okobi said.
“Today, we make another commitment to deliver on our mandate towards a competitive, profitable and sustainable agricultural and agribusiness sector, all of this in support of equitable wealth creation in Uganda, by unveiling an initiative that speaks directly to our core areas of interventions including value chain grant financing, lines of credit, agricultural guarantees as well as technical assistance and business development support to build the capacities of financial institutions to finance agriculture and agribusinesses efficiently.
According to officials, the green challenge fund is open to all actors that make contributions to aBi- supported priority value chains and have innovative and green ideas, private sector agribusinesses, NGOs, scientists, researchers, and start-ups.
It will run for 12 – 18 months depending on the nature of the project.