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2009 Economic Report on Africa Promotes “Developing African Agriculture through Regional Value Chains”

June 18, 2009

The 2009 joint African Union and UN Economic Commission for Africa Economic Report on Africa focuses on the contribution of agriculture to development in African countries. The report states that while agriculture is a mainstay of development in Africa, it is also often neglected, isolated from other sectors, and poorly linked to regional and global markets.

Policies to establish “regional value chains” could enhance African agricultural markets through cooperation and a focus on crops with higher regional competitiveness. Regional partnerships should be used to strengthen cooperation in the distribution sector and share information on best practices and new technology. The report recommends improved macroeconomic management, coordinated action by donors and development partners, strengthening of regional coordination for trade negotiations and resisting protectionism, and fulfillment of “Aid for Trade” commitments. To that end, public spending should be increased, high-yield farming practices and technologies should be used, and the rural infrastructure and distribution networks should be improved.

The report is available here.

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