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Farmers Essential to Fighting Poverty in Bolivia

Farmers Essential to Fighting Poverty in BoliviaWorld Bank President Jim Yong Kim concluded his weeklong trip to South America in Bolivia. On his last day, he visited Cliza, a farming village and market. Proud farmers of the region displayed their products to President Kim and the President of Bolivia, Evo Morales. These farmers and their food products are an important part of achieving food security in Bolivia.

These farmers play an important role in fighting poverty in Bolivia and promoting opportunities for all. An agreement signed by Kim and Morales guarantees programs and funds to support thousands of small farmers and increase their access to the market. The agreement will foster a partnership between the country’s own farmers and decision-makers.

“The President of the World Bank does not come here to give us recipes but to support our own recipes and policies, our programs developed by our own ministries. The World Bank does not blackmail, or impose conditions, not anymore,” Morales said.

The World Bank has been involved in developing rural Bolivia since 2005 when they launched the World Bank’s Rural Partnership Project (PAR). PAR has successfully developed relationships between small-scale farmers and buyers. Bolivia has more rural partnerships than any other Latin American country, with approximately 800 productive partnerships that benefit 30,000 families. The World Bank is extending the project (PAR II) that will benefit an additional 35,000 families.

“In the past, the farmers immigrated to other countries, like Spain or Argentina, but when PAR was established we could build good, high-quality flower nurseries thanks to the investment and technical assistance. Now we have more income for our families and we even provide employment,” said Marcelino Cervantes, from the association of organic flower producers of Bella Vista.”

– Catherine Ulrich

Sources: World Bank, UN
Photo: Flickr