PARM Process in Zambia was implemented from June 2016 until April 2019. The joint-process enabled PARM to build on the findings of the World Bank risk assessment study and provide technical support to strengthen the capacities of different actors to manage risks in agriculture.
Parm Phases Status
Zambia’s agricultural sector extensively employs the population, feed the nation and contributes to GDP. In the years between 1990 and 2013, the sector’s productivity rose markedly by 170% but the contribution to GDP has gradually been declining in the wake of compounding risks.
PARM worked strategically with the World Bank team to develop a comprehensive risk assessment for Zambia. The assessment enabled stakeholders to identify the key priority risks – drought, excessive rainfall and floods, crops pest and diseases and price volatility.
Based on the recommendations outlined in the assessment, PARM and its country partners launched and finalized feasibility studies on two ARM tools that align with market risk needs in Zambia: 1) Warehouse Receipt Systems (WRS) connected to the FRA and the ZAMACE and 2) Access to Information on Early Warning Systems.
So far, PARM has organized a CD1 activity in Lusaka. The training attracted over 60 participants from a diverse stakeholder group and increased their knowledge of the general ARM concept, risk methodologies and the range of management options. Zambia also benefited from the PARM regional k-sharing event on “Building capacities to empower farmers to manage risks at the farm level: lessons from experience”.
The PARM process created opportunities for the Government of Zambia to provide institutional support for the integration of ARM into Zambia’s National Agriculture Investment Plan 2022-2026 (NAIP II). CD1 activity was already piloted with the IFAD-ESAPP programme. Stakeholders, including AFD, WB, WFP, GIZ and IFAD have also further discussed the possibility of integrating the ARM proposals and RAS into their on-going projects, which are mostly led by the Government.
Setting up Mission
Preparation for the PARM process in Zambia begun in May 2016 following a correspondence initiated between the Government of Zambia and the President of IFAD for PARM to join the IFAD-sponsored Enhanced-Smallholder Agribusiness Promotion Programmme (E-SAPP) design mission to Zambia. This was an exploratory mission for PARM to identify possible opportunities to mainstream holistic ARM into the design of IFAD-funded E-SAPP. By June 2016, the Government of Zambia’s demand to participate in the PARM process was approved by the PARM Steering Committee meeting.
Road-map for the PARM Process
Following the approval, the PARM Team organised its set-up mission to Zambia in March 2017 with an invitation from the Ministry of Agriculture and the Ministry of Finance. The mission was a necessary first step in the joint process. It led to an extensive discussion with stakeholders, identification of potential synergies on ARM, and development of an outcome road map to facilitate the joint process. The roadmap to guide PARM process in Zambia was officiated with the CAADP Focal Person (who is based at the Ministry of Planning).
A Country Liaison Officer was also identified and later assigned to coordinate activities and manage stakeholder relationships among the diversity of partners involved in the PARM process in Zambia.
Risk Assessment Study (RAS)
In November 2017, a team of experts from the World Bank finalised an agricultural sector risk assessment for Zambia. PARM reinforced the dissemination of this study and developed a 4-page agricultural risk profile factsheet to complement the World Bank’s voluminous report.
Capacity Development Seminar
In June 2018, a capacity development (CD1) training support for the IFAD/E-SAPP project officers and other range of stakeholders was organised in Chilanga (near Lusaka) with the support of the MoA. The training aimed at increasing knowledge on the holistic approach to ARM, risk assessment methodology, and ARM tools. Findings from the World Bank ASRA for Zambia were presented to the trainees, who mainly consisted of not only the E-SAPP project officers but also other relevant stakeholders from government agencies, farmers’ organizations and private sector.
Recommendations for ARM tools outlined in the World Bank RAS led to the stakeholders’ decision to launch two feasibility studies; 1) improving access to agricultural risk information for meso-level stakeholders and smallholder producers in Zambia and 2) enhancing the Zambian Warehouse Receipt Systems (WRSs) and aligning it with the Food Reserve Agency strategic plans.
Preparation for these studies kick-off in September 2018 with the development of the Terms of Reference (ToR) for these two feasibility studies. After the launch of a call for proposal and a competitive selection process, a pool of experts from Kenya and Zambia were selected for the study on ARM information, whereas, the IAPRI, a Zambian-based policy research institute was contracted for the WRSs. The two studies were conducted from November 2018 to March 2019. Final reports were published in July 2019 following the official validation by the MoA.
Regional K-sharing event
Zambia also benefitted from PARM regional knowledge-sharing event on “Building capacities to empower farmers to manage risks at the farm level: lessons from experience” held in Lusaka in December 2018. The workshop saw the participation of stakeholders in Zambia, including officials from NUFAZ, MoA, MoF, In-Service Training Trust (ISTT), SPGRC and Sustainable Agribusiness Solutions. Stakeholders shared their experiences on key success factors for capacity development at the farm-level to collect best practices for farmer-friendly impact-oriented CD.
Zambia – High-level dissemination workshop
PARM organized a policy dialogue/dissemination in April 2019 allowing the Secretariat to successfully officiate the end of the joint process in Zambia. Findings from the two feasibility studies were presented and validated at the workshop. The results of the entire PARM process in Zambia were also presented to solicit support from Government as well as technical and financial partners to enhance the integration of various components of capacity development training and ARM tools into Zambia’s NAIP, E-SAPP, and other relevant programmes.
Matching ARM need with priority investments
Bilateral discussions from the joint-process have guaranteed the possibility of IFAD Project Managers (for E-SAPP, RUFEP and BRAVA) to integrate outcomes of the PARM-Zambia process into these projects. The Government of Zambia with its bilateral strategic partners, including NEPAD- CAADP, will monitor the implementation of the proposed ARM tools.
PARM will continue to provide support as a facilitator to assess the interests of technical-financial partners and leverage the collaboration with the MoA for any possible implementation of the various proposed ARM tools. Particularly, the IFAD-funded E-SAPP programme has already integrated the RAS component into its projects and dialogue has been opened on how to align the identified tools with specific aspects of the programme.
Country Final Report
The overall PARM process led to a number of achievements, in terms of bringing ARM to the core of development and agricultural policies, bringing evidence to improve risk perception, strengthening capacities and enhancing partnerships on ARM, investing in priority tools for better agricultural risk management, and engaging with the Government, local institutions and development partners to mainstream ARM components into Zambia’s National Investment Plan, E-SAPP and other relevant development programmes.
All these achievements and many other outcomes are documented in the Zambia final report.