IFAD President Gilbert F. Houngbo to visit Finland

IFAD President Gilbert F. Houngbo to visit Finland

President of the International Fund for Agricultural Development Gilbert F. Houngbo will visit Finland on 12 October, on the invitation of Minister for Development Cooperation and Foreign Trade Ville Skinnari.

Finland is a long-term supporter and partner of the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), which is one of the specialised agencies of the United Nations. IFAD works to promote food security and nutrition and to reduce poverty in rural areas. The organisation focuses on small-scale food producers, who account for one third of all farmers in the world and who are particularly vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. In 2020, IFAD supported over 128 million people, 49 per cent of whom were women.

“IFAD is a close partner for Finland. As a result of conflicts, climate change and the COVID-19 pandemic, hunger has increased alarmingly worldwide. Together with IFAD, we seek new solutions to reduce hunger and poverty. IFAD also supports important work against climate change,” says Minister Ville Skinnari.

In 2020, more than 23 million people benefited from IFAD’s financial services and 3.7 million people received training in income-generating activities or business management. Almost 1.7 million hectares of land was brought under climate resilient practices. In addition, nearly 73,000 people managed to establish ownership or user rights over natural resources and to register them in national cadastres and/or information management systems. 

In addition to a meeting with Minister Skinnari, IFAD President Houngbo will have a meeting with Permanent Secretary at the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry Jaana Husu-Kallio and Managing Director Karin Isaksson from the Nordic Development Fund (NDF) headquarters in Helsinki. 

Houngbo will also have a discussion with representatives of the Baltic Sea Action Group and the Finnish Meteorological Institute to exchange views on the possibilities of carbon farming in climate change mitigation. He will also learn about various solutions offered by Finnish companies. 

International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD): 

  • IFAD is an international development finance institution and a UN specialised agency. It is one of the world’s largest providers of funding for agriculture and rural development in the poorest countries.
  • IFAD plans and funds programmes and projects that aim to promote food security and nutrition and reduce rural poverty in developing countries. In its activities, IFAD focuses on gender equality and climate questions. 
  • During its Twelfth Replenishment cycle (2022–2024), which will soon start, IFAD will raise EUR 3.8 billion for projects aimed at supporting poor rural communities. IFAD will step up its climate change management target and, in addition to climate change adaptation, invest in climate change mitigation. IFAD will also target more support to projects in fragile states and Africa. 
  • In 2022–2024, Finland’s contribution to IFAD will be EUR 15 million. In addition, negotiations on the provision of a concessional partner loan (CPL) to IFAD are under way. 

Kirsi Airio, Special Adviser to the Minister for Development Cooperation and Foreign Trade, tel. + 358 50 574 1729
Pekka Hirvonen, Director, Unit for Development Finance and Private Sector Cooperation, tel. +358 295 351 407

The email addresses of the Ministry for Foreign Affairs are in the format [email protected]