African Development Bank Group (www.AfDB.org) The Board of Directors on Friday approved a $1.5 billion facility to help African countries avoid a looming food crisis.
With food supplies disrupted by the Russo-Ukrainian war, Africa now faces a shortage of at least 30 million metric tons of food, mainly wheat, corn and soybeans imported from both countries.
African farmers urgently need high-quality seeds and inputs before the growing season begins in May to quickly increase food supplies. African Development Bank $1.5 billion African Emergency Food Production Facility is an unprecedented comprehensive initiative to support smallholders in filling food shortages.
The Africa Emergency Food Production Facility will provide certified seed to 20 million small African farmers. This will increase access to agricultural fertilizers and allow them to produce 38 million tonnes of food quickly. This is a $12 billion increase in food production in just two years.
African Development Bank Group President Dr. Akinwumi Adesina said: “Food aid cannot feed Africa. Africa doesn’t need a bowl in hand. Africa needs seeds in the soil, and mechanized harvesters to harvest the abundant food that is produced locally. Africa will feed itself with pride because there is no dignity in begging for food…”
The African Emergency Food Production Facility has benefited from stakeholder consultations, including with fertilizer producers and separately with the African Union ministers of agriculture and finance earlier this month.
The ministers agreed to implement reforms to overcome the systemic barriers that prevent modern input markets from working effectively.
Wheat prices have soared in Africa by more than 45% since the war in Ukraine began. Fertilizer prices have gone up 300%, and the continent is facing a fertilizer shortage of 2 million metric tons. Many African countries have seen rising prices for bread and other foods. If this deficit is not corrected, food production in Africa will fall by at least 20% and the continent could lose more than $11 billion in food production value.
The African Development Bank’s $1.5 billion strategy will result in production of 11 million tonnes of wheat; 18 million tons of corn; 6 million tons of rice; and 2.5 million tons of soybeans.
The Africa Emergency Food Production Facility will provide farmers with 20 million certified seeds, fertilizers and extension services. It will also support market growth and post-harvest management.
The African Development Bank will provide fertilizer to smallholders across Africa over the next four agricultural seasons, exercising its influence with large fertilizer producers, loan guarantees and other financial instruments.
The facility will also create a platform for advocating for important policy reforms to solve the structural problems that prevent farmers from receiving modern inputs. This includes strengthening national institutions that oversee input markets.
The facility has a structure for working with multilateral development partners. This will ensure fast alignment and implementation, better outreach and effective impact. This will increase preparedness and technical responsiveness. In addition, it includes short, medium and long-term measures to address the urgent food crisis and the long-term sustainability and resilience of Africa’s food systems.
Dr. Beth Dunford, African Development Bank Vice President for Agricultural, Human and Social Development, said: “The Africa Emergency Food Production Facility builds on lessons from the African Development Bank’s African Feed Response to Covid-19 (https://bit.ly/3yPQS9h) programs. The program has provided a strategic roadmap to support Africa’s agricultural sector and safeguard food security from the effects of the pandemic.”
Over the past three years, Bank Technology for African Agricultural Transformation The initiative has delivered heat-resistant wheat varieties to 1.8 million farmers in seven countries, increasing wheat production by 2.7 million metric tons, worth $840 million.
Long-term sustainability to wean Africa off wheat and other food imports
The five-year upgrade phase will follow the two-year Africa Emergency Food Production Facility. This will build on previous achievements and strengthen self-sufficiency in wheat, maize and other staple crops, as well as expand access to agricultural fertilizers.
The five-year phase will deliver seeds and inputs to 40 million farmers under the Technology for the Transformation of Africa’s Agriculture programme.
In April, UN Secretary-General António Guterres appointed Adesina to the elected Steering Committee of the Global Crisis Response Group.
The US Senate Subcommittee on State and Foreign Operations Allocations recently invited Adesina to make a presentation on the African Emergency Food Production Facility.
The Global Alliance for Food Security spearheaded by the German Government provides an excellent forum for the African Emergency Food Program Facility, which is part of a coordinated and collective effort by development partners and countries to accelerate food production in the short term while remaining focused on long-term action. medium and long to build resilience.
For the Food and Agriculture Security Mission (FARM) supported by the French Government, the African Development Bank (AfDB) partnered with IFAD and has agreed to be part of the FARM coordinating team and steering committee. The African Emergency Food Program Facility lays the foundation and complements FARM activities that aim to strengthen local production systems in Africa and reduce food loss to support the development of sustainable and resilient food systems.
Click here (https://bit.ly/3Nv2eUq) to learn more about the African Emergency Food Production Facility.
Distributed by the APO Group on behalf of the African Development Bank Group (AfDB).
Department of Communication and External Relations
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About the African Development Bank Group:
The African Development Bank Group is Africa’s premier development financial institution. It consists of three distinct entities: the African Development Bank (AfDB), the African Development Fund (ADF) and the Nigerian Trust Fund (NTF). In 41 African countries with external offices in Japan, the Bank contributes to the economic development and social progress of its 54 regional member states. For more information: www.AfDB.org
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African Development Bank board approves $1.5 billion facility to prevent food crisis
Source link African Development Bank board approves $1.5 billion facility to prevent food crisis