Nigeria: World Bank Earmarks U.S.$30 Billion to Address Global Food Insecurity
By Gilbert Ekugbe
The World Bank has announced plans to invest over $30 billion to address the ongoing global food security crisis in the next 15 months.
The World Bank made this known on its website over the weekend, explaining that the move is part of a comprehensive, global response to the ongoing food security crisis.
It maintained that the $30 billion would be deployed for existing and new projects in areas such as agriculture, nutrition, social protection, water and irrigation.
According to the World Bank Group President, David Malpass, the financing will include efforts to encourage food and fertilizer production, enhance food systems, facilitate greater trade, and support vulnerable households and producers.
“Food price increases are having devastating effects on the poorest and most vulnerable. To inform and stabilise markets, it is critical that countries make clear statements now of future output increases in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Countries should make concerted efforts to increase the supply of energy and fertilizer, help farmers increase plantings and crop yields, and remove policies that block exports and imports, divert food to biofuel, or encourage unnecessary storage,” he said.
The World Bank boss added that Bank is working with countries on the preparation of $12 billion of new projects for the next 15 months to respond to the food security crisis.
In his words: “These projects are expected to support agriculture, social protection to cushion the effects of higher food prices, and water and irrigation projects, with the majority of resources going to Africa and the Middle East, Eastern Europe and Central Asia, and South Asia.”
“In addition, the World Bank’s existing portfolio includes undisbursed balances of $18.7 billion in projects with direct links to food and nutrition security issues, covering agriculture and natural resources, nutrition, social protection, and other sectors. Altogether, this would amount to over $30 billion available for implementation to address food insecurity over the next 15 months. This response will draw on the full range of Bank financing instruments and be complemented by analytical work,” he stressed.
Explaining further, he said the Bank’s global response will address four priorities which include supporting productionand producers.