ACBA-CREDIT AGRICOLE BANK to provide targeted loans to Armenian farmers for acquisition of hailstorm protection units

05.05.2017 18:24
ACBA-CREDIT AGRICOLE BANK to provide targeted loans to Armenian farmers for  acquisition of hailstorm protection units

YEREVAN, May 5. /ARKA/. A trilateral memorandum was signed today between ACBA-CREDIT AGRICOLE BANK, the UNDP Armenia Office and ARNAP Foundation – the National Platform of Disaster Risk Reduction. ACBA-CREDIT AGRICOLE BANK told ARKA that under the memorandum the sides affirm their intention to jointly mitigate the consequences of hailstorms in Armenia’s agricultural sector.

Within the framework of the program, ACBA-CREDIT AGRICOLE BANK will provide targeted loans to farmers for the acquisition of hailstorm protection units on a 7 year term, with an initial interest rate of 12,5%. In its turn, the UNDP Armenia Office will provide 20% of the units as a tender investment. During the project, ARNAP will provide farmers with maintenance, usage and care consultation for the hailstorm protection units, and will carry out the measurement and installation work.

“One of the most important goals of the program is to form and develop farming businesses in Armenia and the culture of using modern systems for protection from natural disasters. Since its establishment, the Bank stood next to farmers, and is one of their main supporters. Despite the fact that the bank is a profit expecting organization, it’s not only financial resources that we have provided to our clients. By conveying skills and knowledge to our partners during twenty years, we have always been one of the initiators of innovations and the best international experience”, CEO of ACBA-CREDIT AGRICOLE Bank Hakob Andreasyan said.

“UNDP highlights cooperation with the private sector, which will be a new impetus for spreading alternative approaches for climate risk reduction. Within the framework of this cooperation, the UNDP has already imported Italian units, which have at least 12 years of warranty and high efficiency,” Dmitry Mariasin, deputy permanent representative of UNDP in Armenia said.

“Being established by the Armenian government as a structure assisting the accomplishment of the multi-branch mechanisms of disaster risk reduction, we strictly highlight this cooperation, because in addition to directly supporting Armenian farmers and contributing to the spread of alternative approaches for risk reduction, it displays the efficiency and necessity of cooperation between various structures in the process of disaster risk reduction, once again emphasizing that risk reduction cannot be the problem or monopoly of one single structure,” ARNAP foundation acting director Ara Barseghyan said.

The greatest harm to agriculture, in particular, to viticulture, fruit and vegetable growing is caused by hailstorms. Studies show that about 4-5% of agricultural production is destroyed by hailstorms in Armenia, estimated to cost about 16-20 billion drams a year. Seven out of 10 regions of Armenia are in the danger zone.

The cost of 1 square meter of anti-hail protection unit for vineyards is 182 drams, and for other fruit gardens - 227 drams. Anti-hail nets during the period of blossoming and ripening of fruits secure almost 100% protection for trees and vines from the negative effects of hailstorms and winds, as well as from birds and large insects.

ACBA was established in 1996 as part of EU’s TACIS program. As a result of a long-term and mutually beneficial cooperation between ACBA Bank and the French Credit Agricole the latter became the biggest shareholder of ACBA in 2006, September. ACBA was restructured, becoming a closed joint stock company and was renamed ACBA CREDIT AGRICOLE BANK. ($ 1 - 484.77 drams). -0-

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