Pakistan receives $659mn from ADB to enchance food security

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) has recently sanctioned a series of projects worth $658.8 million, aiming to assist Pakistan in various developmental aspects. This financial assistance is primarily directed towards enhancing domestic resource mobilization, restoring schools ravaged by the severe floods of August 2022, and boosting agricultural productivity to fortify food security, as per an ADB statement.

Yevgeniy Zhukov, ADB Director General for Central and West Asia, emphasized the importance of this funding in helping Pakistan overcome the ramifications of the previous year’s cost-of-living crisis and catastrophic floods. He stated, “This significant new wave of financing will help Pakistan recover from the impacts of last year’s cost-of-living crisis and super-floods and return to the path of long-term development that is sustainable and inclusive.” Zhukov highlighted the multifaceted nature of this initiative as a strategic part of ADB’s engagement in Pakistan, aiming to synergize program lending and project investments for elevating Pakistan’s economic stability and improving the quality of life for its citizens.

A notable segment of this funding, an $80 million concessional loan, is allocated for the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Food Security Support Project. This project falls under ADB’s broader commitment of $1.5 billion to aid Pakistan’s recovery from the 2022 floods. The initiative is designed to tackle climate vulnerabilities, bolster food security, and enhance the livelihoods of rural farm households in the most flood-affected districts of the province. It includes providing vital agricultural inputs, training to smallholder farmers, and special emphasis on women’s empowerment and household nutrition. Moreover, the project will improve digital access, particularly regarding market opportunities and climate information.

An additional grant of $3 million from the Japan Fund for Prosperous and Resilient Asia and the Pacific, managed by ADB, will be utilized in the project to support activities specifically tailored for female farmers. These activities include seed cleaning and the safer handling of agrochemicals, further underscoring the project’s commitment to inclusive growth and women’s empowerment in Pakistan’s agricultural sector.

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