AFRICAN leaders have convened in Senegal at the action-driven Dakar Food Summit, to mobilise and align government resources, development partners, and private sector financing to unleash the continent’s food production potential.
Jan. 27, 2023
2 min read
What to expect from Dakar food summit
Prime Minister Sam Matekane
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The three-day summit is hosted by the President of the Republic of Senegal and the Chairperson of the African Union (AU), Macky Sall, and co-hosted by the African Development Bank Group.
Among others, the summit that ends on Friday seeks to bring together the government, the private sector, multilateral organisations, NGOs, and scientists to meet the escalating challenge of food security in Africa.
At the end of the high-level meeting, it is expected that commitments will be made by heads of state towards among others, financing frameworks for delivering country food and agriculture delivery compacts to achieve zero hunger.
Prime Minister Sam Matekane is part of the summit which started on Wednesday.
He is expected to bring home skills on how the country can improve agriculture and reduce food insecurity.
Improved agriculture can also play a critical role in enhancing the country’s economy which has been declining since the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“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, climate-smart agricultural systems, with private sector investments all along the food value chain can help turn Africa into a breadbasket for the world,” the African Development Bank Group said ahead of the summit.
After the event, private sector actors will commit to the development of critical value chains.
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Central Bank Governors and Ministers of Finance will commit to the development of financing arrangements to implement food and agriculture delivery compacts, working with Ministries of Agriculture, as well as private sector players, including commercial banks and financial institutions.
Roughly, 80 percent of Lesotho’s population depends on the agricultural sector for their livelihoods.
However, agriculture’s contribution to Gross Domestic Product (GDP) has declined over the last five years.
Among others, droughts have had a devastating effect and destroyed many summer harvests and livestock.