📅 25-27 January 2023
At the action-driven Dakar 2 Summit, Heads of State will convene meetings to mobilize and align government resources, development partners, and private-sector financing to unleash Africa’s food production potential. With the removal of barriers to agricultural development aided by new investments, it is estimated that Africa’s agricultural output could increase from $280 billion per year to $1 trillion by 2030.
Investing in raising agricultural productivity, supporting infrastructure, and climate-smart agricultural systems, with private sector investments all along the food value chain, can help turn Africa into a breadbasket for the world.
Private sector actors will commit to the development of critical value chains. Central Bank Governors and Ministers of Finance will commit to the development of financing arrangements to implement Food and Agriculture Delivery Compacts, working with Ministers of Agriculture, as well as private sector players, including commercial banks and financial institutions.
Diversifying food production for the world
Globally, 828 million people suffer from hunger, with Africa accounting for 249 million or a third of the number of hungry people in the world. Achieving Sustainable Development Goal Number 2 on Zero Hunger cannot be achieved unless it is achieved in Africa. The United Nations has noted that Africa must be the focus, where “the number of undernourished is growing faster than anywhere in the world”.
Feeding the world, therefore, requires that the global food systems be changed to fully unlock the food production potential of Africa.
This is the same clarion call of the United Nations “A profound change of the food and agriculture system is needed if we are to nourish more than 828 million people who are hungry today and the additional 2 billion people the world will have by 2050. Increasing agricultural productivity and sustainable food production is crucial to help alleviate the perils of hunger”.
Food shortages can cause serious social and political problems. As the United Nations Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres said “governments must bolster agricultural production and invest in resilient food systems that protect smallholder food producers. “If we do not feed people, we feed conflict”.
Unleashing Africa’s food and agriculture potential
Despite having 65% of the remaining arable land to feed 9 billion people in the world by 2050, the continent imports over 100 million metric tons of food at the cost of $75 billion annually. Africa has the potential to feed itself and contribute to feeding the world. Its vast savanna areas alone are estimated at 400 million hectares, of which only 10% (40 million hectares) is cultivated.
Investing in raising agricultural productivity, supporting infrastructure, and climate-smart agricultural systems, with private sector investments all along the food value chain, can help turn Africa into a breadbasket for the world. Achieving zero hunger in Africa will require between $28.5 billion and $36.6 billion annually. With the removal of barriers to agricultural development aided by new investments, it is estimated that Africa’s agricultural output could increase from $280 billion per year to $1 trillion by 2030.
To further diversify food supply sources for the world, amid the lingering effects of the war in Ukraine and its systemic effects globally, and to secure food supplies for Africa, it is now critical to support efforts to unleash the agricultural potential of Africa, for sustainable food production. Africa stands to gain, and the world stands to gain from such a concerted effort.
Scaling Up Successes: Food and Agriculture Delivery Compacts
The strong political will of African Heads of State, the availability of technologies and platforms to deliver climate-smart agricultural technologies to the scale of millions of farmers, incredible successes of some countries in achieving self-sufficiency in selected crops in a very short period, all show that Africa can achieve zero hunger targets. They also show that the time is right for a global coalition of efforts around Africa to unlock its immense agricultural potential to become a global destination for meeting rising food supply shortages in the world.
This will require concerted efforts to deliver results in measurable ways. To ensure accountability to deliver results, the research and development systems, national food, and agricultural systems will be structured around the development of “Food and Agriculture Delivery Compacts”.
The action-driven agenda of the Summit will:
- Mobilize high-level political commitment around production, markets and trade to deliver Food and Agriculture Delivery Compacts for selected countries.
- Mobilize and align government resources, development partners and private sector financing around the Food and Agriculture Delivery Compacts to achieve food security at scale in each country.
- Share successful experiences on food and agriculture in selected countries and successful platforms to scale up support for agriculture.
- Double agricultural productivity with state-of-the-art, climate-adapted crop, livestock, and aquaculture technology and advisory services and support research and development for a pipeline of climate-resilient agricultural technologies.
- Develop necessary infrastructure and logistics with Special Agro-Industrial Processing Zones to build markets and competitive food and agriculture value chains.