Country-Level Policy Engagement - a review of experience
Policies affect every dimension of the institutional and legal context in which poor rural people pursue their livelihoods; they shape the world they live in and the economic opportunities open to them. Supportive policies can go a long way towards providing the conditions in which people can lift themselves out of poverty. Conversely, policies that do not create opportunities, or that exclusively reflect the interests of other economic players, can be an insuperable barrier or an unbridgeable gulf – roadblocks barring the way out of the poverty trap. Thus, an enabling country-level policy environment for agriculture and rural development is not only critical for effective implementation of IFAD-supported projects, but also a precondition for enabling rural people to overcome poverty. As IFAD shifts its focus from exclusively project-specific goals to making a broader contribution to rural poverty reduction, engaging in country-level policy processes is becoming an increasingly important activity within country programmes, supported by dedicated services and products, and an important mechanism through which to scale up proven approaches and lessons learned at the project level.