Training on Developing Financial Solutions for Climate-Resilient Agricultural Value Chains

June 19 - 21, 2024 | Khon Kaen, Thailand

The Greater Mekong Subregion (GMS) stands at the forefront of agricultural innovation and climate change challenges. As one of the world’s most diverse and dynamic agricultural hubs, the region faces unique risks related to climate variability and extreme weather events. Its dependency on natural resources and agriculture makes it particularly susceptible to climate-induced risks such as floods, droughts, and erratic weather patterns, all of which directly impact agricultural output and productivity. These factors threaten not only the sustainability of agricultural practices, but also farmers’ financial stability and livelihoods. Financial institutions, agricultural extension services, and non-government organizations play pivotal roles in developing and implementing financial solutions that can help mitigate these risks. However, the effectiveness of such solutions heavily relies on a deep understanding of the local agricultural landscape, the specific climate risks involved, and the financial needs of the farming communities. By focusing on profiling farmers to understand their specific vulnerabilities and needs, stakeholders can more effectively tailor financial products and services that encourage the adoption of sustainable practices. Furthermore, designing suitable green financial products is not only a necessity for risk mitigation but also a strategic investment in the region’s long-term sustainability and economic health. These products can facilitate transitions to sustainable agricultural methods, such as precision farming, organic farming, and the use of drought-resistant crop varieties, which are vital for the resilience of the agricultural sector.

Moreover, effectively marketing these innovative financial products is crucial to ensuring their adoption at the grassroots level. Advanced marketing strategies will enable officers and officials to communicate the benefits of these products clearly and effectively, ensuring that
farmers understand and are willing to embrace these new opportunities. Equipping key stakeholders, such as bank desk officers, development workers, and government officials, with the necessary skills and knowledge to accurately profile farmers’ vulnerabilities and needs, design tailored financial products that address these specifics, and effectively market these solutions will ensure wide adoption and impact. It will foster a
collaborative approach to agricultural finance, promoting sustainable practices that are critical for the agricultural sector’s resilience against the backdrop of climate uncertainty in the region. Responding to the need for strategic investment in climate-smart agriculture, Mekong Institute (MI) and the Asia-Pacific Rural and Agricultural Credit Association (APRACA) have initiated a project aimed at enhancing the resilience of the agricultural sector through innovative financial solutions. Through this joint effort, capacity building programs are being held to catalyze a transformative approach to agricultural finance from 2021. This year, the training program will focus on shaping and steering the financial and support services thatcan empower farmers to adopt more resilient agricultural practices.

The three-day training is designed to enhance the capacity of key stakeholders in the agricultural finance sector to tailor financial and support services that will assist farmers in transitioning to more resilient agricultural practices. 

Specifically, it will:

1. Educate bank desk officers, development workers, and government officials on the latest methodologies for profiling farmers’ vulnerabilities and needs in relation to climate change and agricultural sustainability;

2. Develop expertise in designing specialized loan products that incorporate green elements, aimed at promoting sustainable agricultural practices;

3. Provide participants with effective marketing strategies to communicate the benefits of green loan products to the farming community and actors in the commodity value chains; and

4. Foster a collaborative network among financial institutions, non-governmental organizations, and government bodies to support the ongoing development and refinement of agricultural finance products.

Bank desk officers such as agricultural loan officers, relationship managers, credit analysts, branch managers, and sustainability officers.
Government officials in agriculture such as agriculture extensionists, policymakers, and regulators.
Program/project officers in NGOs working in the fields of agriculture, finance, environmental conservation, or rural development

Module 1: Understanding Climate Risks and Farmer Profiling

This module serves as the foundation for the training workshop, aiming to equip participants with a deep understanding of the various climate risks that impact agriculture, particularly in the GMS. It also focuses on developing skills for profiling farmers to accurately assess their vulnerabilities, needs, and capacities in the face of these risks. The knowledge gained in this introductory module is critical for designing financial products and support services that are both effective and sustainable. This sets the stage for effectively addressing the challenges that lie ahead in the workshop, ensuring that participants are well-prepared to develop and implement financial solutions that can mitigate the impacts of climate risks on agriculture.

 Module 2: Designing Tailored Loan Producs

Building on the foundational understanding of climate risks and farmer profiling, Module 2 shifts focus to the practical application of this knowledge in the design of innovative financial products. This module aims to equip participants with the skills necessary to create loan products that are not only financially viable, but also specifically tailored to meet the unique needs and challenges of farmers in the context of climate change.

Module 3: Developing Financial Products for Financing Commodity Value Chain

Module 3 focuses on the financial aspects of commodity value chain development. It aims to equip participants with the expertise to design financial products that support the entire commodity value chain, from production to marketing. Additionally, it will transform the theoretical knowledge and practical skills from previous modules into effective marketing strategies for the newly designed loan products. It focuses on developing and implementing comprehensive marketing plans that support development of value chains and communicate the benefits of climate-smart financial products to farmers. The strategies will ensure that these products are not only available but also accessible and appealing to the agricultural community.

Download concept note, click here

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