AfDB supports Agricultural Development in Mauritius

Share |

The Board of Directors of the ADB Group approved on Wednesday in Tunis, a loan of 7.74 million Units of Account (UA*), equivalent to US$ 11.77 million to finance the Northern Plains Irrigation Project. The project will ensure the construction of irrigation systems in the northern region of the country, which accounts for 20% of the national sugar cane production and 25% of the food crops.

Apart from the water shortage which adversely impacts on the production and the quality of sugar cane, the North has other inhibiting factors in the development of agriculture that include the rocky nature of the area and land fragmentation. The project will seek to alleviate these constraints and boost agricultural production.

The project will focus on the following components:

  • De-rocking and Land Preparation
  • Installation of Irrigation Infrastructure (Centre-Pivot and solid set systems)
  • Technical Assistance
  • Institutional support.

A total of 2,400 small planters will have access to irrigation water on a continuous basis once the project is completed, thereby increasing the productivity of agricultural lands. This will help increase small planters’ income in the north through better crop yields and will promote sustainable growth by offering possibilities for diversification of the agricultural base. Consequently the income disparity within the community will be reduced.

An estimated 15% of this target population will be women who manage households. The project is expected to increase significantly their communal and economic activity as well as their financial autonomy.

Furthermore, women, as well as youth, will particularly benefit from increased opportunities in the agro-processing sub-sector, with improved opportunities for local as well as export marketing. Thanks to the project, entrepreneurship and small business development will provide a base for economic diversification. Farmers’ risks will be considerably reduced through irrigation and improved technology and farming strategies. All these factors will contribute to greater food security and better standards of living.

The Bank Group's operations in Mauritius started in 1975. To date, the cumulative commitment of the Group in the

country amounts to 267.69 million UA, equivalent to 407 million US$ for 29 operations.

Project Information Sheet

- Sources of financing: ADB, BADEA & Government

- Estimated start-up date and duration: March 2005, 60 months

- Executing Agency: Irrigation Authority 5th Floor Fon Sing Building 12, Edith Cavell Street

Port Louis - MAURITIUS

Tel: (230) 212 5391/92, 212 5311

Fax: (230) 212 7652

- Procurement of Goods and Services: The Consultant will be recruited through competition on the basis of a shortlist from Training Institutions in areas of irrigation projects design and management in accordance with Bank Group Rules of Procedure.

*1 UA = 1.52049 $US as at 01/03/2005