Rome, 12 February 2008 — The President of the African Development Bank (AfDB) Group, Donald Kaberuka, will participate in the 31st Session of the International Fund for Agriculture Development’s (IFAD) Annual Governing Council Meeting which opens on Wednesday in Rome. The gathering will also celebrate the 30th anniversary of the UN agency, established in 1978 to tackle rural poverty and hunger.
Mr. Kaberuka is scheduled to deliver a keynote address at the session. Other key participants on the programme include the Director General of the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), Jacques Diouf, the Executive Director of the World Food Programme (WFP) Josette Sheeran and host, IFAD President Lennart Båge.
Messrs Kaberuka and Båge will sign a new memorandum of understanding on cooperation between the AfDB and IFAD, prepared by a joint AfDB/IFAD Committee set up in May 2007 to review their cooperation which dates back to 25 July 1978. The two organizations committed to promoting their common goals to reduce rural poverty and hunger, enhance the capacities of the rural poor, promote rural activities and linkages as well as support good governance to spur Africa’s economic development and social progress.
The Memorandum calls for a more focused collaboration between the two institutions in order to bring it to an enhanced level of partnership, which will reinforce IFAD as the AfDB’s premier operational partner in agriculture and rural development.
It also calls for an enhanced strategic partnership focusing in areas such as climate change, development of the Congo River Basin, enhanced fertilizer use in Agriculture as well as the development of rural infrastructure.
At the operational level, IFAD and the AfDB will promote joint planning and portfolio review of co-financed projects, joint project design, appraisal and supervision missions, joint monitoring and evaluation, harmonization of loan administration as well as procurement and disbursement procedures.