Donnerstag, 22.02.2024 19:35 Uhr

FAO at the Italy-Africa Summit: A bridge for common growth

Verantwortlicher Autor: Carlo Marino Rome/FAO, 30.01.2024, 15:56 Uhr
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Rome/FAO [ENA] At the Italy-Africa Summit: A Bridge for Common Growth,which took place on 28-29 January,at the Italian Senate in Rome the Director-General of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) QU Dongyu said that transformation to more efficient, inclusive, resilient and sustainable agrifood systems in Africa can improve average agricultural productivity by two to three times and fuel rural renovation

and development. The event in Rome brought together Africa’s heads of state and government; top Italian officials including President of the Council of Ministers, Giorgia Meloni; Chairperson of the African Union, Azali Assoumani; Chairperson of the African Union Commission, Moussa Faki; President of the European Parliament, Roberta Metsola; President of the European Council, Charles Michel; President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen; Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations, Amina Mohammed and others.

“With over 350 million hectares of cultivated cropland - double that of the European Union - Africa has the potential to produce enough food to feed itself and contribute to global food security,” Qu said. To unleash Africa’s full potential, the Director-General outlined five key pillars that can provide game-changing solutions to efficient agrifood systems transformation, underpinned by strategic partnerships: 1) targeted investment; 2) creating jobs for youth and women empowerment; 3) collectively addressing the root causes of migration, bringing new hope and new solutions; 4) innovation and skills development, particularly for youth and women; and 5) improving market access and trade.

To this end, the Director-General stressed that sustainably harnessing the potential of Africa’s massive domestic food market could help achieve the vision of an African Continental Free Trade Area, leading to a possible 20 to 30 percent increase in inter- and intra-regional trade in agricultural products by 2040. This would also strengthen resilience to shocks and stresses, create jobs and market opportunities and help tackle the impacts of the climate crisis, Qu added. In his remarks, the Director-General commended the Government of Italy for convening the summit to promote an equal partnership with Africa and ensuring that the region remains central to discussions during the Italian Presidency of the G7.

Qu also thanked Italy for generous voluntary contributions, with Africa as one of the main partners, as well as for the new collaboration on the joint project “Green Cities for Africa”, within the context of the FAO Green Cities Initiative. The project aims to support the actions for mitigation and adaption in ten African cities.

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