The objective of the Projet de Développement des Pôles de Croissance dans le Bas-Congo or Regional Growth and Development (PDPC) project is to increase productivity and employment in value chains in the selected sectors of palm oil, cassava and rice. During the project duration (2013 - 2018), 50,000 farmers are expected to directly benefit from the project, of which 40% will be women, and an estimated 11,000 jobs could also be created, as well as benefit at least 10 large enterprises and 30 small enterprises.
The project will target six selected areas, or growth poles, in central Congo: Lukula, Tshela, Boma, Kimpese, Mbanza Ngungu and Inkisi. It will develop on three key value chains - cassava, palm oil and rice - to generate employment, with a specific focus on womens' employment; household income; food security; market development and economic growth. SNV will provide capacity building and broker multi-stakeholder relationships to facilitate the development of these value chains, via six multi-service platforms in the growth pole areas. These multi-service platforms will engage with 50 rural service centres providing essential agri-business services to organised farmer producer groups and cooperatives. SNV will coordinate multiple stakeholders including the provincial ministry of agriculture, farmer platforms, seed producing enterprises, and private sector processing companies, to improve agri-business for inputs, the capacity for high value processing, and profitable market linkages.
The PDPC project has four components, namely (i) the development of agricultural value chains in Bas-Congo; (ii) the establishment of the Maluku Special Economic Zone; (iii) proactive business development; (iv) support for coordination, monitoring, communication and impact assessment. Component 1 of the project provides for the strengthening of agricultural supply capacities on three value chains (palm oil, cassava and rice) and assistance to rural infrastructure through remittances.