€7.5 million in funding promised for international farming and rural development

€7.5 million has been promised by An Tanaiste and the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Simon Coveney, to the International Fund for Agriculture and Development (IFAD), in support of its work eradicating rural poverty in developing countries, between 2019 and 2021.

In a recent meeting with agriculture sector delegates from 11 African countries, Minister Coveney stated that Ireland’s priority in its membership of, and support for, IFAD has been to ensure that “the fund continues to concentrate its work and resources on the poorest and most fragile countries”.

This contribution to IFAD’s work will assist it in that task, he added.

This announcement comes as IFAD’s Governing Council meets in Rome to progress its 2019-2021 plan, which will contribute to the eradication of rural poverty in developing countries.

A particular focus will be placed on gender, climate change, nutrition and – more recently – youth employment.

IFAD’s policies and objectives are closely aligned with Ireland’s international development co-operation programme.

“IFAD and Ireland share a deep commitment to ending global poverty and hunger,” said Gilbert F. Houngbo, president of the International Fund for Agricultural Development.

“IFAD welcomes Ireland’s continued leadership role around the Sustainable Development Goals and its increased support for long-term investments in agriculture and rural transformation that are crucial to reach those goals.

“IFAD invests in all of Ireland’s key partner countries, supporting and empowering the poorest and most marginalised rural people to increase their incomes, food security and resilience.”


The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) is a Rome-based international financial institution, as well as a specialized agency of the UN.

It was established in 1977 as a partnership of the member states of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and other developing countries.

Ireland was one of the founding countries; IFAD’s membership has grown to include 176 countries. Ireland presently holds one of the alternate member seats on the 36-member executive board.

IFAD provides an average of over $1 billion per annum in agriculture sector loans and grants to 97 developing countries. Just over 50% of IFAD’s work is in Africa, with 85 projects underway across 40 countries.