IFC Lends $30 Million to Help Ukraine’s Boost Farm Productivity
Kyiv, Ukraine —IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, is providing a $30 million loan to Astarta, a leading agricultural producer, to help improve its environmental efficiency and strengthen its agricultural productivity and logistics as part of a broader effort to boost Ukraine's agribusiness sector and spur economic development.
IFC’s financing will support a two-year investment program aimed at improving the company’s resource efficiency and competitiveness by modernizing its sugar plants. This would help reduce the use of gas, electricity, and water. The program also aims to help Astarta—which grows and trades grain and oilseed—purchase modern and efficient farm machinery and construct of new storage facilities.
“We are focusing on operational and production efficiency to remain strong and globally competitive,” said Viktor Ivanchyk, Astarta’s CEO. “IFC’s continued financial support will help us reach a new level in resource efficiency and support us as we strive to innovate and boost our exports.”
The investment is part of IFC’s strategy to strengthen Ukraine’s agribusiness sector and increase the country’s export competitiveness. Ukraine is one of the world’s biggest agricultural exporters, accounting for about 10 percent of global grain exports. Astarta supplies grain to Asia, North Africa, and the Middle East.
“With its fertile land and favorable geography, Ukraine has the potential to become a global agribusiness leader and play a vital role in food security,” Stephanie von Friedeburg, IFC’s chief operating officer, said during a signing ceremony in Kyiv. “Working with partners like Astarta helps us catalyze private sector growth and innovation in the agribusiness sector and enhance inclusive growth.”
Astarta, an IFC client since 2012, has created nearly 1,000 jobs in rural areas over the last several years, despite Ukraine’s recession. The new project will further integrate farmers into the company’s domestic and global value chains.
IFC is a major investor in Ukraine’s agribusiness sector, having invested over $1 billion to support projects across the value chain, boost innovation, and help producers enter new export markets.