The goal of the project is to achieve sustainable improvements in livelihoods in 29 municipalities with high poverty levels and low development levels, in the central and southern parts of the country. The aim is to increase income and employment levels among landless people, subsistence farmers, rural entrepreneurs and unemployed and self-employed rural people, with particular emphasis on reaching women within these groups.

In the dual context of economic transition from post-conflict situations and European Union accession, the project supports income diversification and rural livelihoods. It will promote the commercialization of smallholder farm production, commercial rural businesses and off-farm income-generating activities through the supply chain approach. Through that approach it will work to develop stronger commercial linkages among small-scale producers, the private commercial sector, and markets.

To achieve its objectives, the project supports efforts to:

  • increase output, cost-effectiveness and the quality of farm and natural products
  • empower and build the capability of groups and producers’ associations
  • promote business development, provide enterprise support and foster the participation of producers in value chains
  • construct or rehabilitate facilities that are crucial for production and marketing
  • make credit available and accessible to poor rural communities for priority value chain investments

The project introduces development innovations such as:

  • assistance to greater numbers and types of rural enterprises
  • more focused support for new cooperatives, which have a role in improved farm productivity and effective presentation and marketing of produce
  • enhanced support for the savings and credit movement in the Republika Srpska