Development banks have agreed to join forces to tackle the prevalence of hunger across Africa.
According to the African Development Bank, the number of people living with hunger increased from 214 million to 246 million between 2015 and 2021.
However, development bank across the world met last Thursday and agreed to work with African leaders to address rising hunger on the continent. They agreed to shore up adequate financing to transform and modernise Africa’s food production.
President of International Fund for Agricultural Development, Gilbert Houngbo, said, “Africa has the potential to feed itself and feed the world. If we commit today to increasing investments in modernising agriculture, providing skills, finance and better access to food value chains, agriculture has the potential to become a thriving and successful sector that creates jobs and provides livelihoods for small-scale farmers and rural populations – in particular, for millions of young Africans joining the job market.”
The dialogue was initiated by AfDB, in partnership with other organisations like Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa, Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research and IFAD. It brought government officials, heads of multilateral development banks, development partners, regional organisations, research institutions, business leaders, private sector operators, investment agencies, and others together.
The development banks and the partners fixed to a two-day food summit to address the problem of poverty in Africa.
The virtual dialogues will include the Special Envoy of the United Nations Secretary-General for the 2021 Food System Summit, Agnès Kalibata; Executive Chairman of the Institute for Global Change, Tony Blair; as well as the leaders of Islamic Development Bank Group, Afrexim Bank, the Arab Bank for Economic Development in Africa, Food and Agriculture Organisation, 18 African heads of state and other stakeholders, AfDB reported.
It added that the summit would showcase AfDB’s highly successful Technologies for African Agricultural Transformation and other development partners’ success stories.
“The dialogue is an opportunity to share achievements and lessons from across the African continent and accelerate agricultural transformation. It will focus on modernising food production, making African agriculture more business-oriented, and strengthening agriculture value chains.”
AfDB President, Akinwumi Adesina, said, “Getting new and appropriate technologies into the hands of African farmers is a key part of addressing Africa’s agriculture and food security needs. The consequences of not acting would be devastating.
“Finding solutions will require strong backing from governments, development partners and the private sector.”
He added that the impact of climate change, rising fragility and conflict, and locust invasions in East and Southern Africa was also taking toll on the continent.
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