(Ecofin Agency) - The agreement signed with the EIB will provide SMEs in Côte d'Ivoire and Senegal with long-term loans in foreign currency to improve their agricultural productivity in a context of climate change.
The Côte d'Ivoire and Senegal subsidiaries of the African mesofinance group Cofina obtained yesterday a credit line of €16 million for the former and €10 million for the latter from the European Investment Bank (EIB).
This financing, totaling €26 million ($27.7 million), will be on-lent to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and intermediate-sized enterprises (IMEs) active in the cocoa, cashew nut and food crop agricultural value chains in Côte d'Ivoire, and cereals and horticulture in Senegal.
The resources will help the beneficiaries improve their agricultural productivity in the face of climate challenges. They will also receive technical assistance to better handle the specific needs of women clients.
For Amed Sié, Managing Director of Cofina Côte d'Ivoire, the partnership with the EIB will enable the bank to extend its support to the agricultural sector, reaching rural populations through cooperatives and associations, and providing them with "solutions that facilitate the empowerment of their production chain right through to crop processing, in order to turn them into local champions."
The EIB, which has been present in Africa for many years, claims to have invested €4.2 billion in African public and private enterprises by 2022, with almost €500 million for the West and Central African regions. These commitments have targeted the energy, digital, healthcare and water infrastructure sectors.