Nepal Economic, Agriculture, and Trade Activity (NEAT)
Chemonics International (USAID)
Agriculture supply chains in Nepal are inefficient, often due to weak business practices, limited access to finance, and a lack of information sharing. Value-chain actors thus have little understanding of each other’s needs and priorities and how these affect the operation of the entire chain. Opportunities for women and the poor to participate in agricultural value chains continue to be limited by their lack of access to finance and appropriate training.
Making Cents International built the capacity of local organizations in Nepal to provide quality agricultural enterprise training. We began with an assessment of value chain actors that informed the adaptation of our Agriculture Enterprise Curriculum. We then built the capacity of Hurdec, a local service provider, to better serve input suppliers, producers, wholesalers, and traders in the vegetable value chain. Hurdec’s certified trainers delivered trainings to each cadre, followed by a joint training session for input suppliers, producers, wholesalers, and traders.
This approach, and our proven applied learning methodology, ensured that each actor understood priorities and needs of other actors and facilitated a more efficient value chain. More than 80% of the training participants reported an increased volume of transactions and higher prices for their products.
We also conducted a feasibility study on establishing a credit information bureau (CIB) for microfinance institutions in Nepal, since the credit information provided could minimize the risk of multiple financing in the agricultural sector. During the study, we assessed the cost and benefit of a CIB for the microfinance sector within the current CIB organization, rather than setting up a microfinance-specific CIB as a separate entity.