The Africa Agri-Tech Development Forum
Date & Time:
26th Jan 2021
1:00pm TueAdd to calendar
LondonView on maps
Event 1: Prioritising Innovation for Inclusive Agricultural Development in Africa
By 2035 the continent’s population is expected to rise to over 1.8 billion, with the World Bank estimating that 350 million new jobs will be needed, many of which will have to be absorbed by the agricultural sector.
And yet the obvious social and economic significance of the agricultural sector is not reflected in financial lending patterns: less than 3% of total bank lending in Africa goes to agriculture, despite the sector employing more than 70% of the population and generating over 40% of GDP.
Chaired by Lord Paul Boateng, in this first dialogue of the series we will be bringing together a diverse group of experts from business, academia and policy to help us identify and prioritise the key focus areas to address this imbalance, including but not limited to:
Application of Technology; Access to Finance; Skills Development and Training; Gender Equality / Female Empowerment; Youth Development.
The discussion will help shape the thematic focuses of the remainder of the series.
The Africa Agri-Tech Development Forum is a joint initiative launched by Wilton Park and Bobab, designed to facilitate candid discussion and meaningful collaboration around agri-tech development in Africa.
Through a series of high-level virtual events, we’ll be bringing together a diverse group of experts from business, policy and academia to help identify challenges, explore opportunities and promote innovative solutions.
Thematically, we will focus on the entire agriculture value chain, with a particular emphasis on off-farm innovation, job creation and access to finance for ‘agri-preneurs’.
Even before COVID struck, the continent had the highest prevalence of undernourished people anywhere in the world - one in four in sub-Saharan Africa - and amongst the lowest agricultural yields - less than a third of that seen in Asia and Latin America.
The pandemic has only exasperated existing challenges, whether that’s climate change, rapidly growing and urbanising populations or accessing much needed finance.It has never been more important to bring diverse stakeholders together to tackle these tough issues.
This series of thought-leadership discussions - designed to bring together experts who would not automatically meet - will help identify opportunities to accelerate the technological innovation capable of revolutionising the continent's agricultural landscape and with it, the lives and livelihoods of millions of people across Africa.