FAO and Chamber work together on Tackling Financing Agriculture

September 21, 2015
Samoa Chamber of Commerce
Participants attending the AgriFinancing Workshop

Participants attending the AgriFinancing Workshop

The Samoa Chamber of Commerce and the Food Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations has just completed a workshop on Agrifinance. The theme for the workshop was, “Risk of Lending to Agriculture in Samoa”. Important stakeholders from the Finance Sector, Commercial Farmers and Ministry of Agriculture were all present to discuss issues and receive training from FAO Facilitator and expert on Agrifinance Mr Massimo Pera from the FAO head office in Rome, Italy.

Deputy Representative of the FAO Subregional Office, Mr Frank Chopin in his opening remarks commented “this workshop has been organized to bring together agribusinesses, financial institutions and policy-makers, to share the findings of extensive research at the global level on innovative financial services for agriculture. The cases presented are meant to facilitate an open discussion on how such innovations could be applied to Samoa. In this regard, the Chamber of Commerce and Industry plays a pivotal role in supporting the development of the agribusiness sector in the island, along with the government’s agenda”.

President of the Samoa Chamber of Commerce Tuala Pat Leota in his responding remarks thanked the FAO for the opportunity to provide training and capacity building for members of the Private and Public Sector, and that these are important Forums to address and discuss important issues such as access to finance for our agriculture farmers and all relevant stakeholders.

The purpose of the workshop was to build the capacity, create opportunities and improve access to finance in Samoa for Agribusiness operators. In this phase, the workshop will explore possible instruments to address the low levels of access to finance in the agriculture sector. It will also focus on alternatives to traditional collateral in agriculture and strategies to mitigate risk lending for agriculture loan guarantees.

SBEC, SACEP and the President of the Samoa Law Society contributed through presentations on Loan Guarantee Schemes, Matching Grant facilities and Customary Land Legislations as additional resources supporting Agrifinance.