World Economic Forum, the New Partnership for Africa’s Development, the Sustainable Trade Initiative, the Growth Africa Partnership and Nigeria Agribusiness Group partners to increase private sector investment in the agricultural sector.
At the stakeholders’ consultative meeting organized by Grow Africa Partnership in Lagos, the C.E.O of Grow Africa, Mr. William Asiko told farmers, food processors, public sector representatives, agricultural and food research institutions, NEPAD to sign a memorandum.
This aim of the memorandum is to unite all players in the agricultural value chain under one roof and proof and provide intervention for them.
Asiko added that a private investor that showed interest in investing in the value chain would be empowered and guided to make his/her business a viable one.
The C.E.O of NEPAD, Gloria Akobundu, represented by the Director, Programme Development and Implementation, NEPAD Nigeria, Mr. Fola Ayodele, made it known that there was no reason for the continent to be a net food importer; spending $35bn annually on food products and so, it was time Africa feed itself.
She disclosed that Africa has 60% of uncultivated arable land that is enough to feed nine billion people by 2050.
In her address, she said the need to form a partnership was necessary to complement the effort of Comprehensive African Agriculture Development Programme (CAAPD), whose aim is to increase public investment in agriculture by a minimum of 10% of national budgets and to raise agricultural productivity by at least by 6%.
According to her, “What we do with African agriculture today will determine the future of food in the world. For me, this is a call to action for Africa to rise up to this challenge to ascend to a pedestal of global relevance and significance”.