African Development Bank to Support AGRF 2021 With $100,000

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Key financial institutions, developers commit to joint action to speed up Special Agro-Industrial Processing Zones in Africa
Dr. Beth Dunford, Vice President for Agriculture, Human and Social Development, African Development Bank

The Government of Kenya and the AGRF Partners Group are hosting AGRF 2021, organized under the theme, Pathways to Recovery and Resilient Food System

The African Development Bank returns as a top-tier partner of the African Green Revolution Forum (AGRF) – Africa’s largest agriculture conference – to be held in a hybrid format 6-10 September 2021.

The Bank has earmarked $100,000 to support this year’s annual AGRF, which will be headlined by African Heads of State and Government, and will bring together delegates from governments, civil society, the private sector and research communities. The Government of Kenya and the AGRF Partners Group are hosting AGRF 2021, organized under the theme, Pathways to Recovery and Resilient Food System.

“As Covid-19 continues to cause disruptions across Africa, we must prioritize policy and facility support that focuses on rebuilding infrastructures that foster the production, processing and availability of more – and more nutritious – food to feed Africa. AGRF is the platform to move these policy conversations forward, addressing every facet of the continent’s food system,” said Dr. Beth Dunford, Vice President for Agriculture, Human and Social Development, African Development Bank.

Vice President Dunford leads the Bank’s “digital delegation” to AGRF, including; Atsuko Toda, Director for Agricultural Finance and Rural Development; Martin Fregene, Director for Agriculture and Agro-industry; Edson Mpyisi, Chief Financial Economist and Coordinator of the Bank’s Enable Youth program; Olukemi Afun-Ogidan, Digital Agriculture Flagship Coordinator; Grace Vuhya Obeda, Principal Youth Employment Officer; Hafou Touré from the Bank’s Agricultural Finance and Rural Development Department; and Bank Principal IT Solutions Architect Thierno Diarra.

The delegation will take part in more than a dozen AGRF 2021 sessions or pre-summit side events.

Dunford will deliver remarks during the launch of the Africa Agriculture Status report on Tuesday, 7 September, from 14:00 East Africa Time (EAT). The session focuses on unpacking the concept of sustainable and resilient agri-food systems. Dunford will be a panelist in the AGRF parallel workshop addressing Building Strong Food Systems through Inclusive Data on 10 September at 11:00 EAT. She will present at the Walking the Path: Commitments Framework session later on Friday, from 14:00 EAT.

Director Toda will speak to the Bank’s Special Agro-Industrial Processing Zone  initiative during AGRF’s Rural and Market Development parallel workshop on 8 September at 11:00 EAT. Toda also took part in three pre-AGRF side events on 6 September: as a panelist for the session Unlocking African Public Development Banks’ Catalytic Role as well as the session Unlocking AfCFTA Trade Opportunities for SMEs. She also spoke during the Writing the Blueprint for Rice Self-Sufficiency in Africa panel.

Agriculture and Agro-industry Director Fregene headlined three AGRF pre-summit sessions, talking about the Bank’s Technologies for African Agricultural Technologies (TAAT) (https://bit.ly/3jRUXC6) flagship initiative at the TAAT Africa-organized side event on 6 September, then segued into a second session about the Bank’s Livestock Investment Masterplan, organized during the same period by the Bank and the International Livestock Research Center. At 16:00 EAT on Monday, Fregene was the keynote speaker about Rehabilitating Acid Soils for Food Security in Africa. On 9 September, he serves as a panelist at the Sustainable Productivity Platform (NET ZERO) parallel workshop from 11:00 EAT.

Bank Chief Financial Economist and ENABLE Youth Coordinator Edson Mpyisi is a panelist at AGRF’s Generation Africa parallel workshop on 10 September from 11:00 EAT. Generation Africa brings together young entrepreneurs, innovators, movers and shakers in Africa’s agri-food sector.

Olukemi Afun-Ogidan lends her experience as the Bank’s Digital Agriculture Flagship Coordinator at AGRF’s AgTech and Digitalization parallel workshop, which will focus on ways to increase the innovation sustainability of digital solutions for African agriculture. The workshop starts online at 11:00 EAT on 10 September.

Bank Principal Youth Employment Officer Grace Vuhya Obeda and Hafou Touré, representing Agricultural Finance and Rural Development, are judges for the Summit’s Pitch AgriHack Competition this year. Bank Principal IT Solutions Architect Thierno Diarra serves as a judge with the AGRF GoGettaz competition.

The Bank’s participation at AGRF 2021 is part of ongoing efforts to help align Africa’s voice into commitments to be made at the United Nations Food Systems Summit later this year.

The public can follow the Bank’s participation at the AGRF by registering for free at www.AGRF.org.

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