IFAD‘s Ides de Willebois told participants at the second Brussels Briefing on ‘Advancing African agriculture‘ that increasing the productivity of small holders remains the main challenge.

Despite the fact that most poor people live in rural areas, he noted that ODA for agriculture has drastically declined since the 1980s. This also clearly contradicts evidence showing that investment in agriculture, especially in Africa, is 2 to 3 times more effective in poverty alleviation when compared to non-agricultural investments.

He agreed with other speakers that agriculture it is indeed growing in Africa – despite a series of constraints such as climate change, soil fertility, infrastructure, mechanization, and marketing. Nevertheless, this growth is most often related to increased use of new land instead of more productive used of existing agricultural land.

To address this productivity challenge, it is essential to work on coordination among donors and aid effectiveness, also involving new partners such as foundations in supporting agriculture.

Ides de Willebois shares his main points and the role of IFAD in supporting African agriculture



Summary of presentation (doc format)

See more from the 17 October briefing

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