AFT (Agriculture Fast Track) Fund is a
new trust fund managed by the African Development Bank which was launched on 8th
of May 2013. The AFT (Agriculture Fast Track) Fund is facilitating investments
in agricultural infrastructure in Africa by lowering project preparation costs
for AFT grantees. The AFT will provide grant funding for the initial project
development costs of a broad range of agriculture infrastructure projects
spanning the entire value chain from production to market. They have made
available a total sum of $23.8 million for grant funding applications from 10 eligible
countries in Africa which include; Benin, Burkina Faso, Cote d’Ivoire,
Ethiopia, Ghana, Malawi, Mozambique, Nigeria, Senegal and Tanzania.
Basically, AFT will support Small and
Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in the agriculture sector, government agencies
preparing agriculture infrastructure projects, non-governmental and civil
society organizations such as farmer organizations and agriculture Fund
Managers with clients seeking last mile financing or advisory services to
formulate bankable agricultural development proposals.
AFT will equally provide
support including, but not limited to:
- An environmental/hydrological study for an irrigation system that
would support smallholder crop production.
- A marketing plan for an agro-processing facility supported by a
nucleus farm and corresponding out-grower scheme, which will create
stronger market linkages for smallholders. This would include crops,
livestock and fishery products.
- Financial Modeling for a joint venture to establish a crop/
livestock/ fishery products – processing operation focused on smallholder
farmers that produce high-quality flour for the domestic market.
- An engineering study for the construction of an extraction and
refining centre; a centre which would provide inputs and training to allow
new smallholder farmers to enter the supply chain.
application may be disqualified for the following reasons;
- Late applications - An application submitted or resubmitted after
the stipulated deadline.
- Documents not submitted in PDF format
- Applications outside of the 10 selected countries in the Call for
- Applications not targeting the agriculture sector
Moreover, Applications for an AFT Grant will be
evaluated on the following criteria:
- Importance of infrastructure component of the investment
- Alignment of the investment to documented national development and
food security priorities
- Size of total investment
- Bankability (including government’s own contribution)
- Management capacity of the proposed team
- Relevant technical and operating experience of the applicant and
- Realism of the market assumptions underlying the investment
- Smallholder impacts
- Food security concerns
- Environmental and social impacts
- Gender considerations
Applicants will have to complete the following three
sections to submit a complete and acceptable application:
- Eligibility check;
- Project concept note; and
- Full application;
should create a login to the AFT website and create a password that will allow
them to access and contribute to the application over the course of time.
Applicants may craft their applications over time by using the save button to
update current application information which must be completed prior to the