Transforming Africa’s agriculture for sustainable inclusive growth, improved livelihoods and shared prosperity.
This Background Note (PDF) by AGRA was intended for the High-Level Side Event on African Economic Transformation held in the margins of the Third International Conference on Financing for Development, 13-16 July, Addis Ababa Ethiopia. It highlights potentials and challenges for transformation of African agriculture for sustainable growth. The performance of African agriculture has been encouraging. Nonetheless, the vast potential of African agriculture remains largely untapped. African agriculture attracts very little commercial lending, a strong signal that the majority of investors are not yet buying into the potential of the sector. There are a number of reasons for this anemic interest, but agriculture policies and institutions that exist at all levels have been named among the most critical deficiencies. The note highlights that there are examples in several countries where targeted reforms and a focus on attracting private sector investment to commercial agriculture opportunities have achieved rapid results. Concluding that it is critical for governments, business and international institutions to pursue policies, incentives and interventions that direct a greater share of this financing to African farmers and agriculture businesses. Making the right investment and policy decisions now will determine whether the fruits of Africa’s enormous agriculture potential are harvested for the benefit of the majority of the African people who depend on agriculture for food and incomes.