Africa-Press – Sierra-Leone. Last week, high-profile representatives from around 40 African nations, including at least 20 heads of state, gathered in the Senegalese capital to take part in the second Dakar Summit on Feeding Africa: Food Sovereignty and Resilience.
The African Development Bank (ADB) along with its international partners have allocated $30 billion to boost agriculture and food production in Africa over the next five years, said ADB President Dr. Akinwumi Adesina at the close of the summit, which was co-organized by the bank.
The ADB chairperson added that the fact that Africa, which is the world’s fastest growing continent, “is not able to feed itself” is “embarrassing.” Adesina called on African governments to introduce more support measures for local farmers in order to take steps towards African food independence.
Africa is home to 1.4 billion people, roughly 17% of the world’s eight-billion population. Food sovereignty and sustainability in Africa has been one of the main concerns in recent years, with more than 20% of the continent’s population facing hunger, according to United Nations estimates.
During the summit in Dakar, the Senegalese president and current chair of the African Union, Macky Sall, said that the continent has the potential to increase its own food production and no longer rely on imports from other parts of the world.
Experts believe that food insecurity in Africa has worsened over the past few years due to several factors, including the rapid growth of its population, climate change, internal conflicts, as well as the COVID-19 pandemic and the sanctions campaign against Moscow amid the ongoing Russian military operation in Ukraine.
Earlier in the week, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov confirmed during a visit to Eritrea Russia’s “unconditional” commitment to its obligations regarding food exports to African countries in need, including those stemming from deals brokered with the participation of the United Nations.
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