1. What does your role involve at FAO?
As an economist I support investment by government, international financial institutions and private sector in agriculture and rural development. This is done through conducting economic analysis, value chain analysis, identification of constraints and opportunities for responsible agricultural and agribusiness investment projects, such as functionality of agricultural markets, government support and trade policies, support services, credit and market institutions and organizations other areas. I also work on facilitating public-private dialogue on policy issues affecting investment, development of producer and agro-industry associations, legislative frameworks for pre- and post-harvest crop financing and other areas to support investment.
2. What investment support does FAO provide?
FAO’s support to investment includes the formulation, implementation, supervision and evaluation of agricultural investment projects. FAO advises governments on policy and legislation to foster an enabling environment for investments, facilitate public-private policy dialogue and to support investment decision-making. We also support national agricultural investment capacities, provide guidance and tools, such as Rural Invest, institutional strengthening and learning support. World Bank, EBRD, IFAD, regional development banks are amongst our main investment partners. FAO also draws on financing mechanisms, such as the Global Environment Facility, to address environmental concerns and make investments more sustainable.
3. Why is the grain sector in Egypt important and what work is being done there?
With nearly USD 6 billion worth of grain and oilseed imports in 2015, Egypt was the second largest global importer after China. It’s the single largest importer of wheat. Grain imports will remain essential for Egypt’s food security in the long term, given the country’s limited arable land and water supply, and considering its population growth. Cereals are the most important crop group for the Egyptian farmers with wheat being the main one as the crop represents almost 10 percent of the total value of agricultural production. Wheat is a fundamental part of the Egyptian diet, particularly in light of the very high per capita consumption of bread. Yet, the Egyptian grain supply chain is characterized by policy distortions and food losses and its efficiency could be significantly improved.
FAO and the EBRD conducted a review of the Egyptian grain sector in 2014 to highlight its challenges, identify bottlenecks and opportunities for attracting additional private investment for increasing the efficiency and reducing costs in grain supply. The government has made important steps to move to targeting subsidies through the Smart Card system domestically, reduced distortions in the domestics wheat price and procurement, abolishment costly government port-of-loading grain inspections, streamlined import phytosanitary clearance. We have supported the public-private dialogue on specific issues in the grain sector with some results. For instance, the abolishment of the port of loading inspection services would allow Egypt to save about USD 2.5 million per year on wheat import costs per year. Substantial further saving will come from investment in reduced domestic grain losses and removing price distortions.
4. Why is public-private policy dialogue important?
Because it brings results, reduces costs and brings investment as trust between the government and private stakeholders improves. For instance, the government could eventually rely on privately-built silos to store domestic wheat, reduce the complexity of its wheat import tenders and improve data quality and transparency to facilitate investment. We are working with our investment partners from EBRD and the government to help consolidate the views of the private grain suppliers, develop possible solutions and facilitate future discussions through grain suppliers’ association in Egypt. FAO will continue to work with our partners facilitating the public-private dialogue on technical and policy issues, improve grain market transparency to stimulate the private sector investment needed to ensure the future of Egypt’s food security.
During his student years, Dmitry worked in a dairy farm in Sweden (1993). Following completion of post-graduate studies in 1998, he worked for eight years in U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Office in Ukraine as a principal analyst responsible for grains, oilseeds, sugar, dairy, livestock and poultry market analysis, agricultural trade policy reviews, technical assistance in agribusiness and trade development. Dmitry then headed production, consumption and trade analysis as well as business development research for almost a year in a multinational agribusiness company prior to joining FAO’s Investment Centre Division in December 2006. He has led and participated in a number of missions on the identification, preparation, implementation support and evaluation of investment projects and programs with focus on financial and economic aspects and conducted a number of policy and agribusiness sector reviews and technical assistance projects under the FAO-European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) Framework Agreement and the FAO-World Bank Cooperative Program as well as FAO’s own Technical Cooperation Program. He has worked in the Russian Federation, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Ukraine, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Kyrgyzstan, Serbia, Pakistan and Egypt covering a wide range of investment and technical assistance projects in different agribusiness sectors. His works also includes creation of an enabling environment for private sector investment though supporting the public-private dialogue on policy issues affecting investment, including work with producer and agro-industry associations, capacity development in the area of agricultural and agribusiness investment as well as the development of legislative frameworks for pre and post-harvest crop financing.
Mr Prikhodko has a Specialist’s degree in Economics and Farm Accounting from the State Agriculture and Ecology Academy of Ukraine and Cand. Sc. degree in Environmental and Nature Resource Economics from Lviv State Agricultural University, Ukraine.
Register for I2I Africa 2017 today to learn more from Dmitry Prikhodko about securing finance for Agribusiness.