IOFS strategies to combat impending food security crisis in the wake of COVID-19 pandemic features in discussions with ICD
Senior officials of the Islamic Corporation for the Development of the Private Sector (ICD), (a subsidiary of the Islamic Development Bank) and Islamic Organisation for Food Security (IOFS) held a videoconference meeting on 16 April 2020 to exchange information and explore joint actions towards mitigating the effects of the global coronavirus pandemic on food security in OIC member states.
During the Conference, on-going actions aimed at supporting member states and their private sector in the area of financing healthcare and food security interventions were highlighted within the context of IOFS Memorandum on post-COVID-19 responses. It was established that ICD has also allocated an amount of US$250 million within the overall IsDB interventions in response to various requests from OIC member states, including procurement of Personal Protective Equipment for healthcare workers and food security interventions for poor and vulnerable persons. ICD also confirmed its responses in the area of debt rescheduling to enable member states free more resources for the on-going emergency responses during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Furthermore, both sides discussed such medium term measures as the operationalisation of the OIC Regional Food Security Reserves and the utilisation of Sukuk financing for the creation of national and regional strategic food stocks, while commending ICD for supporting member states in their emergency food aid shipments to other OIC member states. The meeting also explored the implementation of such IOFS programmes as Islamic Food Processing Association (IFPA), which is a private-sector advocacy mechanism for addressing the perennial problems of post-harvest losses and food waste across OIC member states.
As an OIC specialised institution, ICD is engaged in funding projects that are aimed at creating competition, entrepreneurship, employment opportunities and export potentials. It encourages the development of Islamic Finance, attracting co-financiers and advising governments and private sector groups on how to establish, develop and modernize private enterprises and capital markets.