Three mid-sized rural-focused domestic NBFCs are getting USD 55 million (around Rs 400 crore) from two US developmental finance institutions, DFC and USAID, to help address the economic impact of the pandemic on farmer producer organisations, agri-tech companies, and those engaged in clean energy solutions for the farm sector.
Loans to farmer producer organisations will be provided by Avanti Finance, Samunnati Financial, and Maanaveeya, Avanti said in a statement without disclosing how much each of the lenders will get from the 'India Covid response programme for agriculture transition. The money will be jointly sponsored by these bodies and works like a credit guarantee to address the economic impact of the pandemic.
And, the initiative will introduce and support clean technologies for farmers with small landholdings, particularly women, that improve market linkages and increase income while having a positive impact on the environment. The eight-year programme will reach over two lakh smallholder farmers and is supported by direct grants from several international foundations and the UK government's Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office.
The financial support will be complemented with technical assistance led by the Rabo Foundation of the Netherlands to focus on areas of business management and help in building stronger market linkages. This support will address the health and economic needs of the vulnerable farmer communities severely impacted by the pandemic, said Warren Harrity, director of programme support at USAID in India.
The US International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) is the development bank of the US government, and it partners with the private sector to offer finance solutions to the most critical challenges facing the developing world today. It invests across sectors including energy, healthcare, critical infrastructure, and technology.
The US Agency for International Development (USAID) is an international development agency of the US government and works towards uplifting lives, build communities, and advance democracy. The Rabobank, which is a global leader in food and agriculture lending, established the Rabo Foundation in 1974 and invests in farmer organisations across Africa, Asia, and Latin America to help them become self-sufficient.