Climate Insurance Pilot Project Launched For Côte d’Ivoire Rice Farmers

The MINEDD of Côte d’Ivoire, UNDP Côte d’Ivoire, and African Risk Capacity support climate change pilot project for agricultural value chains…

Climate change impacts and solutions to enhancing the productivity of Africa’s agricultural value chains were in the spotlight during the recent launch of a project initiated by the Côte d’Ivoire Environment and Sustainable Development Ministry (MINEDD), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Côte d’Ivoire and African Risk Capacity Limited.

The climate insurance pilot for agricultural value chains will target Côte d’Ivoire’s rice production sector and aims to establish a solid operational framework that could be replicated across additional agricultural value chains, such as cotton, maize and cacao.

Run in collaboration with the FUSCOP RIZ CI “COOP-CA” (a federation of rice producers and their board of directors), the pilot project also forms part of the broader search for sustainable climate change solutions for agriculture.

“ARC and its partners initiated this pilot project as a result of the critical need to protect the agricultural sector and producers’ income from the impact of climate change,” David Maslo, ARC Ltd Head of Business Development says. “And while we are here as coordinator and initiator, it is important to stress that the ownership of this pilot programme lies fully with the country’s stakeholders.”

Attended by 55 stakeholders from the private insurance sector (AXA, Atlantiques Assurance and ALLIANZ and the National Direction of Insurance), Côte d’Ivoire technical ministries and agencies such as the Sodexam, the Anader, the FIRCA and the ADERIZ, with the 10 rice production basins in the country, this first event introduced the pilot’s scope and prospective way forward.

“It also raised awareness about the impact of climate risks, particularly on rice production in Côte d’Ivoire, as well as highlighted enrolment procedures, claims management and outreach methods envisaged for the project,” Maslo adds.

Further, the event sought to obtain consensus from all stakeholders in attendance on governance and the pilot project in its entirety, with the outcome being to formalise the start of project activities in the rice sector.

Structured as a workshop, presentations were delivered by the MINEDD, UNDP, the FUSCOP RIZ CI “COOP-CA”, ARC, the CASAI, AXA Côte d’Ivoire, and the Groupe Holo Sécurité Afrique (GHSA), followed by working group discussions. These also gauged the opinions of rice farmers about the climate insurance product currently in development, determined product awareness and set about devising a business plan.

Concluding the day, delegates attended a site visit to meet rice farmers in Mondoukou, where some 300 ha were inspected. The workshop wrapped up with 17 recommendations formulated by the stakeholders to ensure the success of the pilot project.

Among them were that Sodexam, a state-owned company responsible for meteorology activities in Côte d’lvoire, among other activities, be involved in the design of an insurance product for the sector; that premiums should be subsidised; and that an innovative system of payment and collection of premiums be set up to prevent the dispersion of rice farmers.

“Further recommendations from attending farmers included the need to mechanise the sector, promote access to agricultural inputs and improve the distribution of seeds and improved varieties. We will be rolling the pilot out and testing it during summer, with our goal to review how it has fared at the end of the season,” Maslo concludes.

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