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What are the main challenges to gender equality in agriculture finance?

  • Lack of access to agricultural finance, affordable financing options are not available to women farmers. Ownership of assets has  bearing one’s ability to access credit. Assets, including land are used as a form of collateral required for one to be granted a loan by banks.  Only few women farmers’ have accessed credit. If women have access, control and ownership to land, can help them in accessing loans from banks. Women are regarded as high risk, lacking the collateral and business experience required to manage resources in a manner that provides dividends to financial institutions 
  • Lack of access to farming inputs. Some of the farming inputs are too expensive for some families. Hence the government should supply some of the inputs to these women since they are playing an important role in agriculture. Subsistence farming as then practiced by women, in order to produce sufficient food, required intensive factors of production such as extra labor, fertilizers and farming implements which are not easily available to women because of the low position they occupy in society for procuring or determining inputs.
  • Lack of access to farm labor. These women are poor and they do not have money to hire farm laborers.Most of these women ended up working in these farms with their children in order to cut labor cost. Most women do not have access to education due to financial constrains.

How can the Bank address these challenges, as it works to bolster food security on the continent?
Banks should provide loan facilities that are favorable to women and the interest rates should be reasonable, bearing in mind that they are working with women who do are financial unstable.

What experiences and lessons could be used to buttress the effectiveness of the Bank’s interventions in this area
Government should monitor all financial institutions that they have a special desk for women and have finances that are for women projects with low interest rates.




It is clear that women have been excluded in main value chains.

They need their confidence to be or bolstered through value addition training.

They also need to be supported to access lucrative markets.

Shadreck Hungwe
Zimbabwe Farmers Union