The New Times (Kigali)

19 July 2014

Rwanda: Farmers On the Right Course - WB Official

The World Bank Group Managing Director for Finance, Bertrand Badré, said he was impressed by the fast increase in crop yields that has in turn improved living standards of farmers in the Eastern Province.

Badré, who was the country to attend the National Bank of Rwanda's 50th anniversary as well as the Financial Inclusion for Inclusive Growth and Sustainable Development International Conference, took time off on Friday to visit Rwamagana and Ntende cooperatives that are financed by the World Bank.

"What I see is encouraging and it represents good steps ahead... I see people are happy from the inside. I am really impressed by the big changes that have happened to your lives," said Badré, who was accompanied by Tony Nsanganira, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Agriculture, and other World Bank officials.

Farmers said that better and sustainable agricultural methods had led to increased yields, incomes and standards of living.

Farmer groups and cooperatives highlighted what they had achieved in last two years. There was a demonstration on good land management practices with farmers showcasing how they had managed to control soil erosion and increase their crop yields.

Badré said that he had been touched by the testimonies of the farmers, adding that the World Bank remains committed to support the Government in improving people's lives.

"What I have heard from you regarding how your lives have greatly improved because of increased crop production is proof that the bank's money in Rwanda is invested properly and this is encouraging," he said.

The delegation toured an area where the project is various different horticulture crops for export, some of which are new in the country. They also visited a maize storage facility and met members of GWIZA Cooperative who briefed them on their operations. The association of women showcased various approaches used to ensuring access to adequate and nutritious food for their families.

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