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World Bank extends US$135M Himachal Pradesh horticulture project”

Shimla, June 12

The World Bank has extended the Himachal Pradesh Horticulture Development Project by an additional year, providing a total of US$135 million in funding. The extension was confirmed in a letter addressed to Rajat Kumar Mishra, Additional Secretary of the Union Government. The World Bank’s country Director of India, Auguste Tano Kouame, stated that the International Development Association Financing Agreement between the World Bank and the State of Himachal Pradesh had been amended to change the project’s closing date from May 2023 to June 30, 2024. The Department of Economic Affairs, Finance Minister of India, requested the extension in a letter to the Bank.

The Himachal Pradesh Horticulture Development Project, which aims to support small farmers and agro-entrepreneurs in the state, focuses on increasing productivity, improving quality, and enhancing market access for selected horticulture commodities. The project, initiated on June 21, 2016, through an agreement between the World Bank and the State of Himachal Pradesh (referred to as the “Project Implementing Entity”), comprises four main components.

The first component, Horticulture Production and Diversification, aims to boost horticultural competitiveness at the farm level by facilitating access to knowledge, technology, and finance. Its objectives include increasing long-term productivity and farm incomes, taking into account changing market patterns and climate variability.

The second component, Value Addition and Agro-enterprise Development, seeks to enhance value realization at the farm level. It promotes investments in agribusiness and encourages backward and forward linkages in horticulture value chains. The component also supports the development of supply chain infrastructure to prevent wastage and value erosion, as well as the establishment of secondary and tertiary processing facilities that create higher value for the produce.

The third component, Market Development, aims to establish an improved platform for market-related information and intelligence. It strives to expand market access through alternative marketing channels, enhance transparency in the price discovery process, and improve market infrastructure.

Also read:World bank guidelines do not allow water harvesting in non-cluster apple orchard: Minister

The fourth component, Project Management, Monitoring, and Learning, focuses on ensuring the effective implementation of project activities. It also monitors and evaluates the progress, outputs, and outcomes of the project, building upon previous implementation experience.

Notably, around 300 enrolled youths involved in executing the project in the state received show cause notices from the Department a month before the project’s original closing date. However, the extension of the project provides hope for respite from this situation.



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