Regional organizations can make essential connections between West African agribusinesses and financial institutions. But these organizations themselves need tools to improve their clients’ access to finance.
“After we have identified those farms and agribusinesses which have the potential to grow, we often are unable to help them apply successfully for loans,” said Mme. Kassambara Dienebou Diallo of the Malian NGO gestion décentralisée des forêts (GEDEFOR).
Mme. Diallo was among 20 representatives of several Malian and regional organizations—all members of USAID’s Feed the Future network—to receive Trade Hub training and coaching in financing for agribusinesses on Feb. 20, helping to fill knowledge gaps along agricultural value chains. The session in Bamako, Mali followed a Feb. 17-18 workshop with officers of Coris Bank, who learned risk mitigation strategies for agricultural lending and how to better negotiate with loan applicants.
To improve assistance from regional partners, the Trade Hub teamed with USAID/Mali’s Finance for Food Security and Women Entrepreneurs Program (FFSWE) to organize the coaching and training session. FFSWE invited representatives from USAID’s Mali Investment Facilitation Platform (MIFP) and Livestock for Growth (L4G) projects, as well as GEDEFOR, DC Consulting and USAID/Mali.
“This kind of training is very important to us,” Mme. Diallo said. “This training helps us link them [agricultural producers] to financial organizations and also gives us the information about the financial information they need to provide to the banks in their loan applications.”
Through trainings like these, the Hub supports USAID partners to expand loan opportunities for small West African agribusinesses and expand regional trade. Please click here for more information about the Trade Hub’s Finance and Investment activities.