Paris, France - On 13 October 2016, the President of the Republic of Madagascar, Hery Rajaonarimampianina, met with His Highness the Aga Khan to discuss development in Madagascar, where the Aga Khan Development Network operates a number of programmes. The Aga Khan Foundation (AKF) has been implementing a rural development programme in all seven districts of north-western Madagascar’s Sofia Region since 2005. To date, the programme has provided more than 46,000 smallholder farmers with technical support and training on improved rice farming. Farmers have been able, on average, to triple their yields. In turn, greater yields have led to more food-sufficient households and surpluses that have been sold in neighbouring towns. In support of these efforts, the Premiere Agence de Microfinance (PAMF) was established in 2006. PAMF works closely with AKF to provide financial services in Sofia, operating in both the rural areas and small cities. It has expanded to 13 branches, including outside Sofia. PAMF also works in the urban areas of the Analamanga region, and cities such as Majunga in Boeny, where it is focused on small traders and artisans as well as the rural sectors of these urbanized districts. In addition to loans to groups for rice and vegetable production, small equipment purchases and group savings accounts. PAMF also offers loans for warehousing and inventory credit in its own granaries, in borrowers’ own granaries or in village granaries.