Rwanda to tackle malnutrition with the support of Japan
The governments of Japan and Rwanda on Friday agreed on Japan’s yen loan of 10 billion yen (approximately USD 91 million – about Rwf83bn) to supplement Rwanda’s effort to tackle malnutrition through Japan’s Sector Policy Loan for Nutrition Improvement through Agricultural Transformation.
The funding agreement was signed between the Ambassador of Japan to Rwanda, Amb. Takayuki Miyashita, Rwanda’s Finance Minister, Dr Uzziel Ndagijimana, and Shin Maruo, Chief Representative of the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) Rwanda office.
The three-year program will be executed by the Ministry of Agriculture and Animal Resources, the National Early Childhood Development Program (NECDP), the Rwanda Agriculture and Animal Resources Development Board (RAB) and the Rwanda Biomedical Center (RBC).
This is Japan’s first Sector Policy Loan (SPL) to the Government of Rwanda and the country has up to 40 years to repay the loan at an interest rate of 0.01% with a grace period of ten years. I am sure that we will make good use of this funding,” Ndagijimana said.
According to the Ministry of Finance, since 2012, Rwanda has seen the decline of stunting among children of age between 6 months and 5 years from 42% to 35% in 2018, this is only a 7%-point reduction in 6 years, far short of Rwanda’s target to reduce stunting below 19% by Rwanda fiscal year 2023/2024 .
Despite substantial growth in agricultural production over the past 10 years, food security and nutrition remain concerns, especially when looking at the vulnerability to shocks at the household level.
The programme will be implemented by the Ministry of Agriculture and Animal Resources (MINAGRI), the National Early Childhood Development Programme (NECDP), the Rwanda Agriculture and Animal Resources Development Board (RAB) and the Rwanda Biomedical Centre (RBC) under the supervision of MINECOFIN. It will focus mainly on two components of Food Security and Multi-Sectoral Coordination. The programme is scheduled to run from 2019 to 2021.