African Development Bank (AfDB) President, Dr. Akinwumi Adesina has called for increased American and global investments to help unlock Africa’s agriculture potential.
Adesina, who was the distinguished guest speaker at the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA’s ) 94th Agriculture Outlook Forum in Virginia, spoke on the theme The roots of prosperity.
He said: ‘’For too long, agriculture has been associated with what I call the three Ps – pain, penury, and poverty. The fact though is that agriculture is a huge wealth-creating sector that is primed to unleash new economic opportunities that will lift hundreds of millions of people out of poverty.”
Participants at the forum included the Secretary of Agriculture, Sonny Perdue; Deputy Secretary of Agriculture, Stephen Censky; World Food Prize Foundation President, Kenneth Quinn; Chief Economist of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), Robert Johansson; and Deputy Chief Economist, Warren Preston.
Adesina appealed to the US private sector to change the way it views African agriculture.
“Think about it, the size of the food and agriculture market in Africa will rise to US $ 1 trillion by 2030. This is the time for US agri-businesses to invest in Africa,” he said.
‘’And for good reason: Think of a continent where McKinsey projects household consumption is expected to reach nearly $2.1 trillion and business-to-business expenditure will reach $3.5 trillion by 2025. Think of a continent brimming with 840 million youth, the youngest population in the world, by 2050.”
Adesina urged the U.S. government to be at the forefront of efforts to encourage fertiliser and seed companies, manufacturers of tractors and equipment, irrigation and Information Communication Technology (ICT) farm analytics to ramp up their investments on the continent.
“As the nation that first inspired me and then welcomed me with open arms, permit me to say that I am here to seek a partnership with America: a genuine partnership to help transform agriculture in Africa, and by so doing unlock the full potential of agriculture in Africa, unleash the creation of wealth that will lift millions out of poverty in Africa, while creating wealth and jobs back home right here in America,” the 2017 World Food Prize Laureate told the forum.
Adesina told the more than 2,000 delegates that the AfDB is spearheading some transformative business and agricultural initiatives.
“We are launching the Africa Investment Forum, as a 100 per cent transactional platform, to leverage global pension funds and other institutional investors to invest in Africa in Johannesburg, South Africa from November 7-9,” he said.
The post Adesina urges U.S. to support Africa’s agricbusiness appeared first on The Nation Nigeria.