Agriculture is the most important sector in most developing countries, as a majority of the population is engaged in farming. Much of the current agriculture is inefficient, and many farmers do not get the neccessary income to pay for expenses such as schooling, healthcare etc. The potentials for increased production, more stable farm jobs, higher incomes and agri-driven economic development are therefore great.
Norfund invests in agribusiness (agriculture and related production) in Eastern and Southern Africa. Most of the projects are medium to large scale (in local terms) and aims at efficient production for domestic or foregin markets. Norfund also wish to develop local product enhancement where possible, to increase local value creation and jobs.
Investments in agriculture are challenging as there are many nature given risks (weather, crop disease etc.), and the trained labour and management is often scarce. Land rights is also a very important issue related to investments in the sector. Norfund follows strickt IFC standards for this as well as other environmental, social and governance issues related to the investments.