Financial institutions supporting farming communities in Papua New Guinea

The Center of Excellence in Financial Inclusion (CEFI) and the Village Farmers Market (MVF) signed today (Thursday, November 18) a memorandum of understanding with seven (7) partner financial institutions (PFI).

The MoU will see PFI’s partner with MVF implementing the project in six targeted provinces, Western Highlands, Jiwaka, Simbu, Eastern Highlands, Morobe and East New Britain.

Image caption: (left to right) Jack Walom (President, Kada Poroman Micro Finance), Esther Mongea (Senior Operations Manager, People’s Micro Bank), Saliya Ranasignhe (CEFI Executive Director), Daniel Faunt (Managing Director- Retail, BSP), George Awap (Department-Financial Systems Development Department, Bank of PNG), Stephen Mombi (Acting Secretary, Agriculture and Livestock Department), Lavinia Taraika (CEO-East New Britain Savings & Loan Society), Tony Westaway (Managing Director, Mi Bank), Gunanidhi Das (CEO-Womens Micro Bank), Vari Lahui (CEO-Nasfund Contributors Savings & Loans) and John Lutulele (Project Manager-Market for Village Farmers Project).

CEFI will facilitate the work of the seven PFIs through the establishment of memoranda of understanding and provide technical assistance to PFIs, with the support of an expert consultant to design and develop innovative financial products and services that meet financial needs. sales and sales representatives of the MVF target. rural communities.

CEFI and each of the PFIs will develop a business development plan, including a three-year training plan, to build the capacity of the internal organization and ensure that they provide affordable and diversified financial services to MVF target households. and actors in the value chain.

The PFIs who signed the MoU, Bank South Pacific, Mi Bank, Women’s Micro Bank, People’s Micro Bank, Kada Poroman Micro Finance, Nasfund Contributors Savings and Loan Society and East New Britain Savings and Loan Society.

CEFI Executive Director Saliya Ranasinghe said: “Today is a milestone for the agricultural sector where financial institutions are committed to supporting and helping. Farmers should not see banks as a lending institution but as an institution that provides a range of important financial services. Banks are important partners in progress.

George Awap, Director of Financial System Development, on behalf of the Governor of the Bank of PNG and Chairman of the Board of CEFI, Loi Bakani, said: “CEFI is ready to work with the MVF Project and financial institutions to promote financial inclusion services to farming communities in six provinces.

“I would like to thank the financial institutions who volunteered to participate in this innovative approach and the stakeholders for bringing the project to the commercial phase in Papua New Guinea,” said Robert Lutulele, MVF project manager.

Mark Worinu, Managing Director of FPDA (Fresh Produce Development Authority), added: “This is an important milestone for the project and the important reason for the project is the partnership, because if you want to manage the chain of procurement, you must have strong support from financial institutions. “

Department of Agriculture and Livestock (DAL) Acting Secretary Stephen Mombi said, “I am very happy to see financial institutions join us in supporting the project. The project will build partnerships and identify key partners who will link farmers to urban markets. I applaud the seven financial institutions for taking the bold step of providing financial services to this industry.

“We have a commitment not only to Papua New Guinea, but also to the agricultural sector. We will find a way to help the agricultural sector. BSP is very happy to be a part of this project and we are committed to ensuring that we can make it happen and continue to support Papua New Guinea, ”said Daniel Faunt, Managing Director of BSP Retail Banking.

CEFI is implementing sub-component 2.2 of the MVF project which focuses on livelihood and financial literacy training and the provision of innovative financial products and services to improve the lives of farm households in the six selected provinces. from the Highlands region, Morobe and the eastern provinces of New Britain. .

The MVF project is valued at US $ 38 million and is being executed by the Government of Papua New Guinea through the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock and implemented by the FPDA, with funding from the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD).

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