Mr. Mohammed BOUSSAID, Minister of Economy and Finance, Mr. Aziz AKHANNOUCH, Minister for Agriculture, Maritime Fisheries, Rural Development and Water and Forests, and Mrs. Yacine FAL, Deputy Director-General of the African Development Bank (ADB) signed on Tuesday, June 20, 2017, in Rabat, the loan agreement financing the second phase of the Support Project of the National Irrigation Water Saving Programme (PAPNEEI 2).
With a total amount of USD 88 million (MAD 855 million), the financing of PAPNEEI 2 will contribute to the Kingdom's efforts to boost the productivity of the agricultural sector and to enable the development of agricultural water and its economy in large irrigated perimeters. The loan thus consolidates the ADB's support mechanism to the national agricultural strategy, which is being implemented through the financing of the second phase of the reforms support program for the Morocco Green Plan (improvement of sectoral governance and inclusive development of value chains) and to the provision of technical assistance for the development of irrigation infrastructures and the promotion of young agricultural entrepreneurs.
The PAPNEEI 2 will finance the installation of irrigation infrastructures located within the intervention perimeters of Lukos and Dukkala Regional Offices for Agricultural Development (ORMVA) which extend over an area of 26,000 ha, as well as activities of developing irrigation water and building the capacities of various stakeholders. The implementation of this project, over the period 2017-2021, will benefit 10,250 farms, representing a population of more than 61,000 beneficiaries, mostly small farmers. The project thus constitutes the operational follow-up of PAPNEEI 1 that was financed by up to € 53.9 million (MAD 600 million) with a perspective to transform 20,000 ha into localized irrigation within the action zones of the Regional Offices for Agricultural Development of LUKOS, TADLA and DUKKALA.
This project thus confirms the orientations of the new support strategy of ADB in Morocco for the period 2017-2021, which targets a dual objective: promoting green industrialization by small and medium-sized enterprises and the export sector, and improving living conditions through employment for youth, women and in rural areas.
The partnership between the Kingdom of Morocco and the African Development Bank Group has currently materialized 31 operations totaling € 2.2 billion in the transport, energy, water, sanitation, and agriculture sectors, 85% of which is devoted to infrastructure. This proves the excellent cooperation between the Kingdom of Morocco and ADB Group, which is almost half a century old.