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Global Food Security Fund Announces $97M In Grants For Ethiopia, Mongolia, Niger

The Global Agriculture and Food Security Program (GAFSP) has awarded a second round of grants worth $97 million to Ethiopia, Mongolia and Niger for projects aimed at fighting hunger and poverty, the U.S. Treasury Department said on Thursday, Agence France-Presse reports.

“The World Bank-managed fund allotted 51.5 million dollars to Ethiopia, 33 million to Niger and 12.5 million to Mongolia. The grants are aimed at helping each country increase food security, raise rural incomes and reduce poverty by enabling small-scale farmers to grow more crops and earn more,” the news service writes.

The program, originally funded by the U.S., Canada, South Korea, Spain and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, recently received $50 million from Australia, AFP reports. “The fund was created in response to a call by leaders of the Group of 20” last year, which will meet again next week in Seoul, South Korea (11/4).

“These investments will improve access to better seeds and soil, build rural infrastructure and connect farmers to markets. While three countries have been granted funding, many more compelling proposals were not financed due to lack of resources. In order to sustain this fund, we urge our G20 colleagues to join us in this endeavor,” Tim Geithner, the treasury secretary, said in a press release. South Korean Finance Minister Yoon Jeung-hyun and Bill Gates, co-chair of the Gates Foundation, are also quoted in the release.

“The winning countries were selected based on the recommendations of an independent review conducted by global agriculture experts. In addition to having strong needs, the successful proposals demonstrated a comprehensive national agriculture strategy, technically sound interventions to increase agricultural productivity and a commitment to invest their own resources in the agriculture sector,” according to the release (11/4).

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.