The African Development Bank returns as a top-tier partner of the African Green Revolution Forum (AGRF) — now re-branded as the Africa Food Systems Forum.
The annual event, organised by the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa, is the continent’s largest agriculture conference. It is taking place in Tanzania’s commercial capital from 5-8 September 2023.
The Bank has earmarked $100,000 to support the gathering, which will be headlined by African heads of state and government, and bring together delegates from governments, civil society, the private sector and research communities. Tanzanian President Samia Suluhu and the AGRF Partner’s Group are hosting the Forum organised under the theme, Recover, Regenerate, Act: Africa’s Solutions to Food Systems Transformation.
Bank Vice President for Agriculture, Human and Social Development, Dr Beth Dunford will lead a delegation to Dar es Salaam. At a June meeting, President Samia Suluhu Hassan and Dunford recognised Tanzania’s progress in developing its agriculture sector following January’s Dakar 2 Africa Food Summit. The Dakar 2 summit mobilised political commitment, development partners, and the private sector financing toward achieving food security in Africa.
President Hassan was one of many regional leaders at the summit who endorsed Country Food and Agriculture Delivery Compacts centred on African solutions to boost the continent’s food systems.
“Tanzania has a deep understanding the Africa Food Systems Forum’s solutions-oriented theme, having launched a Food and Agriculture Delivery Compact and tripling its budget for agriculture since the Dakar 2 Summit,” Dr Dunford said.
“We are thrilled Tanzania is co-hosting this year’s African Food Systems Forum, and just as thrilled to return as a sponsor of this premiere platform to advance Africa’s agriculture and related sector agenda,” Dr Dunford added.
The Bank delegation will have a robust week at the forum, participating in more than a dozen events.
On Monday, 4 September, the Bank’s Chief Financial Economist and ENABLE Youth Coordinator Edson Mypisi was a panellist on a Forum side event about youth in agrifood systems. Later in the day, Bank Director for Agriculture and Agro-Industry Dr Martin Fregene spoke to nurturing a culture of youth agri-entrepreneurship at a Heifer International hosted side event. Fregene also served as a panellist at a side event focusing on defining Africa’s fertilizer and soil health vision.
Tuesday will see the Bank showcase a “Post-Dakar 2: Food Sovereignty and Resilience” high-level side event, providing a platform to assess progress on implementing outcomes of the Dakar 2 Summit in January.
Other sessions will include participation in a panel on financing agro-processing and agro-industrialization and an International Livestock Research Institute donor roundtable.
The Bank and the Smallholder and Agri-SME Finance and Investment Network (SAFIN) will co-host a networking reception and Bank staff will also participate in a Tuesday dinner launch of the African Transformation Office of Tanzania, supported by IFAD’s African Agricultural Transformation Initiative, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and AGRA.
The African Development Bank’s Technologies for African Agricultural Transformation (TAAT) program will team up with Excellence in Agronomy to host a breakfast side event September 6th on resource-efficient farming and seed systems.