The Asian Development Bank (ADB) Thursday signed a loan of 95 million U.S. dollars with a Chinese agricultural firm to develop inclusive and sustainable livestock farming in China, the bank said in an online statement.
The loan to Jiangsu Lihua Animal Husbandry Stock Company (Lihua)included a direct loan in yuan equivalent to 62.5 million U.S. dollars and a complementary yuan loan worth 32.5 million U.S. dollars through commercial banks, with ADB acting as the lender of record.
"Lihua has shown that it is a proven leader in the modernization of China's agriculture industry, which is critical for the country's food security and economic growth," said Martin Lemoine, Agribusiness Investment Unit Head in ADB's Private Sector Operations Department.
"ADB's assistance will help the company expand its inclusive and sustainable business model, with smallholder farmers at the core of the production process," he said.
ADB's financing is expected to support Lihua to expand its livestock breeding farms as well as contract farming in rural areas, while helping the company increase capital expenditure in environmental protection, animal health, and food safety, according to the statement.
The project marked ADB's first commercial non-sovereign assistance to an agricultural project in China.
The loan is expected to help Lihua increase the number of contract farming households by 24 percent to at least 5,600 and double farmer's annual income by 2020, the statement said.