On April 18th, The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and Ant Financial Services Group signed a Joint Declaration of Intent to explore ways to contribute to economic development in rural areas and to reduce rural poverty in China and other developing countries.
IFAD is a specialized agency of the United Nations that is dedicated to eradicating rural poverty in developing countries. Ant Financial is a financial technology company under the Alibaba Group that also have the vision to develop rural areas and improve the living standards of people from rural regions.
Charlotte Salford, Associate Vice President of External Relations and Governance Department at IFAD, and Peng Bo, General Manager at Ant Financial Rural Finance Department signed the declaration .
“Partnerships with private sector entities, like Ant Financial, are vital to reach our objective of eradicating rural poverty,” said Salford. “Using our complementary expertise, together we can improve the lives and livelihoods of rural people.”
“We are pleased to be partnering with IFAD. By combining Ant Financial’s commitment to promoting digital inclusive finance and IFAD’s vision of every rural family living in dignity, we hope to leverage the power of technology and innovation to improve rural people’s livelihoods, ” said Bo.
Areas of proposed collaboration include improving market access for rural producers through ecommerce platforms and value-chain financing for promising rural agribusinesses.
Since 1981, IFAD has supported 29 rural development projects in China, investing over US$862 million and reaching approximately 4.4 million rural households. IFAD-supported projects focus on enhancing income opportunities through improving rural people’s access to markets, strengthening value chains and promoting more inclusive financial services.