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AfDB Identifies Key Challenges to Address through Agriculture Strategy

AfDB8 February 2012: The African Development Bank's (AfDB) Agriculture and Agro-Industry Department (OSAN) has identified the implementation of drought resilience projects in the Horn of Africa as a key challenge to be addressed in the 2012 AfDB Agriculture Strategy.

At a recent meeting held in Tunis, Tunisia, to define the 2012 AfDB Agriculture Strategy, OSAN experts highlighted key challenges for the department to tackle, including: food security in the Horn of Africa; regional drought resilience building programmes; climate change; and the green economy. Stressing the importance of drought resilience, Abdirahman Beileh, OSAN Director, underscored that the AfDB has committed US$300 million to assist in overcoming the current food crisis in the Horn of Africa. The programme aims to implement long-term resilience building in those countries already facing droughts.

Discussions also highlighted that the agricultural sector employs over 70% of Africa's labor force, and that engagement in this issue needs to ensure: the securing of innovative sources of financing; the formulation of more appropriate public and private sector financial products; and the reduction of lending risks as well as the mobilization of resources from China, India, Brazil and Argentina. [AfDB Press Release]