BNP Paribas joins the sustainable project Zero Budget Natural Farming in India

BNP Paribas joins the sustainable project Zero Budget Natural Farming in India

  • Trends & Vision

On the occasion of the One Planet Summit in December 2017, the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and BNP Paribas signed a key agreement to create sustainable development funding instruments for emerging countries. In June 2018, BNP Paribas and UNEP are announcing a second initiative in the scope of the Sustainable India Finance Facility (SIFF) with the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh, which aims to develop Zero Budget Natural Farming (ZBNF).

A joint approach with UNEP to develop sustainable finance facilities

Following the 1st initiative, “Tropical Landscape Finance Facility” (TLFF) that was launched in Indonesia at the end of 2016, BNP Paribas and UNEP in December 2017 signed an agreement with the aim to support projects for small farmers in fields such as access to renewable energies, agroforestry, access to water, etc.

TLFF is a green loan platform for financing projects that should change the lives of millions of Indonesians in rural areas. The operation was completed in February 2018: a huge sustainable rubber-tree plantation, validated by the WWF, that was financed through a debt platform set up by BNP Paribas.

UNEP and BNP Paribas are continuing their joint efforts once again to deploy this financing programme model, this time in India. The 2nd initiative, which was announced on 2 June 2018, forms part of the Sustainable India Finance Facility (SIFF) with the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh that has about 50 million inhabitants. The state wants to develop Zero Budget Natural Farming (ZBNF), an ancestral technique, which combines different crops and breeding to increase the productivity of farms and limit the need to buy seeds, fertilizers or chemical products from outside.  

At present, the government of Andhra Pradesh has already made the necessary investments to carry out a ZBNF trial with 220,000 farmers. The trial was conclusive, and has allowed these farmers not only to act for their environment, but also to get out of the debt induced by buying expensive chemical products. The programme will now include the gradual transition of 6 million farmers to ZBNF, with a 1st phase of 500,000 farmers by the first quarter of 2019.

This article first appeared on the group website of the BNP Paribas and can be found here