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February 27th, 2018 / Asian Independent, UK

Africa must, in coming decades, explore the entire food chain to create adequate jobs for young people, especially in rural areas, the head of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation said on Thursday.

“Countries need to promote a rural and structural transformation that fosters synergies between farm and non-farm activities and that reinforces the linkages between rural areas and cities,” said FAO Director General Jose Graziano da Silva.

This includes processing, packaging, transportation, distribution, marketing and service provision, especially financial and business services, he said at FAO’s Regional Conference for Africa centered on the theme of creating decent and attractive jobs in the continent – the world’s youngest in terms of the average age of its population.

Estimates suggest that up to 12 million new jobs will have to be created every year to absorb new labour market entrants over the next 20 years, FAO said.

Today some 54 percent of Africa’s workforce – especially farming families – rely on agriculture for their livelihoods, income and employment, the UN agency said. Read more