President of AGRA, Dr. Agnes Kalibata writes:
There is no doubt that Africa is already on an upward trajectory. Per-capita income in sub-Saharan Africa grew by 35% between 2000 and 2014 and poverty rates are falling, with the percentage of people living on less than $1.90 a day declining from 54% in 1990 to 41% in 2013.
Most of this growth has come in countries that have prioritized agriculture. For example, 25 years of steady growth in Ethiopia’s farm sector cut rural poverty rates in half and in Rwanda, poverty has reduced by 25 percent over the same period powered by a growing agricultural sector. The result of this progress is jobs and improved livelihoods for millions of African families.
Of course, it isn’t all sunshine and rainbows. Despite the progress we are seeing, the agriculture sector is still largely underdeveloped. Productivity remains below potential due to inadequate use of yield improving technologies like high-quality seeds, limited access to finance, inefficient markets, limited rural infrastructure and gaps – notably in women access to resources such as inputs, land, labour, and extension services. Read more