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Published On: Sat, Oct 29th, 2022

GCCI certifies six credit official

The Gambia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (GCCI) has recently awarded certificates of participations to various participatory credit officials derived from different financial institutions following a three-days training program which targeted an approach to orient FSPs in the opportunities and debunk the perceived risk perception bestowed on the agricultural sector which specificallyfocused on the Public Private Producer Partnership (4P arrangement), agriculture in the Gambia-A summary from 1965 to 2022, dismantle the risk perception of the Financial Service Providers(FSP) in the agaricultural sector, opportunities for FSPs in the agricultural sector and understanding smallholder farmers and FBOs, held at the GCCI main office in Kerr Serign, sponsored by ROOTS project.

Participated institutions includes GTBank, Trust Bank, Agib Bank, Acess Bank, Reliance and SuperSonicz.

The objectives of the training includes to eliminate/reduce the risk perception that FSPs have on the agricultural value chain, encourage FSPs to understand the potential of smallholder farmers in rice, vegetable and horticulture value chain and to explain the 4P arrangement to the FSPs.

According to the concept note of the training program, it stated that having held multiple round tables with FSPs in 2021 and 2022 under the auspices of the ROOTS project and within the context of the 4P arrangement, the Chamber has established that FSPs hold a misconception of the agricultural sector due to the numerous uncertainties surrounding the sector, rain fed agriculture and the risk pest, low yields, and inadequate access to markets.

The concept note revealed that there has been some advancements in the agricultural sector over the past decade which has lowered the risk elements in the sector, that there has been an upsurge in the transformation of farmers to become entrepreneurs, adding that there has equally been deployment of solar powered drip irrigation technology, investment in market infrastructure and incentives to encourage private sector participation.

It further stated that the agricultural value chains include diverse private sector operators and government institutions, with the vast majority of which are in the private sector and play a crucial role in supplying inputs to smallholder farmers, producers, value addition and finance.

Furthermore, the private businesses provide the financial services, technology, know-how, and information needed to meet the standards required by specific value chains actors with 4Ps goals to enhance the sustainability of viable agricultural businesses and smallholder farmers as a mechanism for promoting access to markets for project beneficiaries and actors of rice and vegetable value chains.

However, prominent among the issues that’s addles the agricultural sector in the Gambia is hindered access to loanable funds from financial service providers which includes high premium for insurance cover for the agricultural sector.

According to the concept note, it further stated that the barrier to intervention of FSPs to commit financing into the agricultural sector is largely sustained by the prevailing high perception banks and insurance companies have on the agricultural value chain.

It concluded that according to the agricultural financing in the Gambia, which is predominantly hinged on donor funding and partly government intervention, the absence of FSPs has left the agricultural sector to stagnateat a substance level without much commercialization.

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