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Raising and Maintaining High Agricultural Productivity in Africa

May 7, 2012

Africa, especially Sub-Saharan Africa, has experienced moderate agricultural productivity growth since mid-1980s, but a sustainable agricultural growth in Africa will require more policies and investments in agricultural research and development at regional and country levels. This is the study presented by ReSAKSS Africa-wide coordinator Samuel Benin at the recently closed 8th Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme’s Partnership Platform in Nairobi.

The presentation is about how to raise and maintain high agricultural productivity across different parts of Africa by analyzing the trends and spatial patterns and determinants of agricultural productivity trends in Africa. ReSAKSS’ study finds out that although the urgency to increase agricultural productivity has been realized in the past few years, very little technical change has been made in Africa, and the infrastructure and capacities of agricultural R&D in most African countries are still lagging behind its global peers due to years of underinvestment. To accelerate the Africa’s technical transformation, more policies and investments in agricultural R&D are needed, especially those that address location-specific technologies and diversity of farmers. A comprehensive regional agricultural R&D strategy, with complementary policies and extension systems that maximizes technology spillovers, will also help fill the technological gaps and facilitate scale economies.

Click to view the presentation

This study on agricultural productivity, which is in collaboration with IFPRI’s Harvest Choice project, will be featured in the upcoming 2011 ReSAKSS annual trends and outlook report (ATOR), available within the next two months.

Over 200 policymakers, researchers, international developers, civil society and media attended the 8th CAADP Partnership Platform (PP) Meeting at May 3-4, organized by the African Union Commission (AUC) and NEPAD Planning and Coordinating Agency (NPCA).

The ReSAKSS flagship publication, 2010 annual trends and outlook report (ATOR), which was also featured at the 7th CAADP PP in Yaoundé, provides a thorough analysis of progress on CAADP implementation, meeting key CAADP growth and spending targets as well as the first MDG targets.  Download the full 2010 report here.

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