Platform for African – European Partnership in Agricultural Research for Development

Friday, May 27, 2016

2016 AfDB Annual Meetings to focus on energy and climate change

23 - 27 May 2016. Lusaka, Zambia. The theme of this year’s meeting was “Energy and Climate Change”, and draws on one of the Bank’s “High 5” priority areas, namely to “Light up and Power Africa”. It also reflects the Bank’s New Deal on Energy and the key resolutions from the recent UN climate talks (COP21) on global warming.

The 2016 Annual Meetings theme was aligned with two of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs): SDG 7 to “ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all” and SDG 13 to “take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts”.

Extract of the programme
The Transformative Potential of Agribusiness - ‘Feed Africa'

Issues for Discussion
  • What are the key strategic issues to be dealt with (and at what levels) in order to achieve inclusive agricultural transformation?
  • Which hurdles and power structures hamper equal market opportunities, and women and youth’s access to essential resources (finance, transport, power, technology)?
  • Which investments and policy interventions have the greatest potential to promote agricultural and agribusiness development in SSA?
  • How can agriculture be made to become a more interesting business proposition for women and youth?
  • How can African governments, the international community, private sector, and civil society organisations support inclusive agricultural transformation and agribusiness in Africa?
The Road to Agricultural Transformation in Africa - Feed Africa’

Presenter Mr. Chiji Chinedum Ojukwu, Director, AfDB
The Panel presented the highlights and formally launch the Strategy for Agricultural Transformation in Africa. Discussion points include:
  • What has been your experience with helping micro and small agribusinesses thrive in your country?
  • What are the biggest challenges facing development of agricultural corridors that link production areas to urban and regional markets, knowing the latter contribute to making locally produced food costlier as compared to imported food?
  • What new approaches and what innovative financing mechanisms has Senegal taken to attract young people into agriculture, and what lessons do you retain from there?
  • What should we do and what role could Agricultural Development Banks play in to promote local agro industries that meet the domestic demand for food?
Document + article
Launch of new initiatives

The New Deal on Energy and the Jobs for Africa's Youth initiative was being launched at the meetings, as well as the African Leaders for Nutrition initiative, which aims to end malnutrition, chaired by former President of Ghana, John Kufuor. The initiative is partnering with the African Union/New Partnership on Development (NEPAD), Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Kofi Annan Foundation, the Big Win Philanthropy, Dangote Foundation and the World Food Program. The Bank also launched a USD 3-billion fund to support women.

Tony Elumelu is the Chairman of Heirs Holdings,
UBA Group Plc, Seadrill Nigeria Ltd and Transcorp Plc -
Nigeria's largest listed conglomerate -
 and Founder of The Tony Elumelu Foundation.
In the same vein, the Bank launched the Transformative Partnership on Energy for Africa, a bold co-development model which includes several partners: the African Union, the Africa Progress Panel, NEPAD, President Obama's Power Africa initiative, the World Bank, and Sustainable Energy for All, African Energy Leaders Group, the European Union, the UK Government, China, France, Germany, Scandinavian countries, Japan, Korea, India, the private sector and others.

In line with the goal to generate evidence-based data to support policymakers in addressing key
issues on the continent, the Tony Elumelu Foundation released the "Unleashing Africa's Agricultural Entrepreneurs" report at the recently concluded World Economic Forum on Africa in Rwanda. The report's insights come from case studies based on the experiences of Tony Elumelu agricultural entrepreneurs in 34 African countries, as well as expert commentary from established stakeholders, practitioners and investors along the value chain. Recommendations and steps for decision makers to improve competitiveness in the sector are also included. The 304 Tony Elumelu Entrepreneurs in agriculture in the class of 2015 have created over 5000 casual and fulltime employment in the past year of operation after receiving direct support from the Foundation.


The Bank’s Annual Meetings are its largest annual event, and its biggest window on the world. They bring together some 5,000 delegates and participants, and feature some 40 official events in addition to the Annual Meeting of the Board of Governors, which constitutes the core purpose of the Meetings.

The Bank’s Governors are the Finance, Trade or Economic Development Ministers from its 54 Regional and 26 Non-Regional Member Countries). The Meetings represent the definitive forum for representatives of Government, business, civil society and media – from Africa and beyond – to debate the social and economic development of the continent.

A major initiative aimed at transforming the agricultural sector to aid food sufficiency in Africa has been launched. The initiative known as Technologies for African Agricultural Transformation (TAAT) is focusing on eight priority areas — self-sufficiency in rice, intensification of cassava, food security in the Sahel, transforming savannas as a breadbasket, restoring tree plantations, expanding horticulture, increasing wheat production and expanded fish farming.

It is being spearheaded by the African Development Bank (AfDB) and the International Institute for Tropical Agriculture (IITA). The initiative was launched during experts meeting at IITA campus in Ibadan, Nigeria, last month (12-14 April) that was called to brainstorm on how to transform agriculture in Africa to feed the continent and end hunger by 2025.

The experts resolved that the TAAT will work with existing structures,technology and innovation, and vigorously transform agriculture through the eight priority areas.
“It has become imperative that an Africa-owned, Africa led and Africa driven-initiative like TAAT take a centre stage to bring about the best approaches towards increasing Africa agricultural productivity and technology delivery,” Yemi Akinbamijo, executive director of the Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa, a partner of the initiative’s implementation.

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