Tuesday, 8 July 2008

Conference on Revitalizing African Agriculture

FARA participated at a two-day conference 25/26 June on revitalizing African agriculture which was held in Tunis with policymakers and agriculture experts from the Bank's regional member countries and representatives of other development agencies in attendance. Held on the theme: "Revitalizing African Agriculture: Its Implication for Addressing the Food Crisis", the conference reviewed partner countries' experiences in addressing the current food crisis.

Representatives from NEPAD, AfDB, CIDA, China Exim Bank, DANIDA, EU, FAO, IFPRI, IFAD, USAID, WB, CIDA, IFAD, WFP, IsDB, IFDC, JICA, WARDA, Nigeria, Cote d’ Ivoire, Gabon, Senegal, Burkina Faso, Mali, Niger, Benin, Togo, Ghana, Gambia, Guinea Bissau, Cape Verde, Mauritania, Malawi, Tanzania, Madagascar, Seychelles, Eritrea, Comoros, Egypt, Tunisia, Morocco and Algeria shared information on how various institutions are dealing with the food crisis in the short-term and medium to long term

They discussed the enhancement of donor harmonization particularly the issue of division of labour among donors in support of the agriculture sector in Africa.

Opening the event, the Bank Group's Operations and Sector Vice President, Zeinab El-Bakri, said:

"As we come up with recommendations on how to address the food crisis in Africa, we take cognisance of the fact that besides ineffectual policies that I alluded to earlier; there are other impediments that affect not only agricultural development, but overall economic development. These include factors like climate change with its accompanying drought, floods, pests and diseases; the rising fuel prices; poor governance as well as political and civil strife in some parts of the continent. All these are related to the current food crisis and will continue affecting our decision-making process in the foreseeable future"