- The fund is developed to address the increasing impacts of climate change on the agri-food system
- Open to the private sector agribusinesses,NGO's, scientists, researchers, and start-ups
- Funds range from between 5 million to 30 million, 5 million to 200 million, and 500 million and above for three categories
Agriculture Business Initiative (aBi) has announced the roll-out of the UGX 7.5 billion Green Challenge Fund to help farmers to increase their resilience to climate change.
The Chief Executive Officer, Mona Muguma-Ssebuliba noted that the fund is available to youth, upcoming farmers, and those already established in agribusiness to ensure climate change adaptation, climate mitigation, and biodiversity conservation.
She made the remarks during the launch amid calls to farmers to apply for the funds.
“This Fund will also promote the development of methods and systems that address green challenges in agriculture and promote a green agri-food system. Today, we kick-off this Fund with UGX 7.5 billion as a pilot but our vision is to scale it up to UGX 20 billion by 2023, to further impact more SMEs and smallholder farmers and the supported agricultural value chains.”
According to Ssebuliba, the Green Challenge Fund focuses on supporting SMEs and farmers to adapt to climate variability and engage in climate mitigation actions to reduce or limit Green House Gas emissions while ensuring a stronger local environment, including soils, ecosystems, and biodiversity.
“Today, we kick-off this Fund with UGX 7.5 billion as a pilot but our vision is to scale it up to UGX 20 billion by 2023, to further impact more SMEs and smallholder farmers and the supported agricultural value chains.”
She also observed 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.
Chair of the aBi Board, Felix Okoboi noted that “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.”Okoboi asserted adding that the initiative that speaks directly to our core areas of intervention including value chain grant financing, Lines of Credit, Agricultural Guarantees as well as Technical Assistance/ Business
Mutagubya George, the Communications and Advocacy Manager at aBi says that the fund comes at a time the country is witnessing the current wave of high temperatures, droughts, and high commodity prices.
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.
To access the fund, eligible stakeholders including all actors that make contributions to aBi-supported priority value chains and have innovative and green ideas – private sector agribusinesses, NGOs, scientists, researchers, start-ups, etc. will be required to apply for the aBi Green Challenge Fund through the website; https://www.abi.co.ug/abi-development-ltd-welcome/applying-for-an-abi-grant/