The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) consecrated the year 2015 as the International Year of Soils (IYS). Therefore, it has been a year intended to raise the consciousness of humanity about the importance of this resource (soil) and the need to preserve it to ensure sustainable and shared prosperity. The various stakeholders in the management and use of this resource, particularly those of the agricultural sector have been called to enhance their consideration of this fragile and threatened resource, to reverse the degradation trend by placing its management and use in a sustainable approach. The international community has reaffirmed its commitment to protect this resource through targets 2.4 and 15.3 of the sustainable development objectives adopted in 2015.
The expression “green revolution” is controversial today; yet my own assessment is that, in spite of many valid criticisms, the Green Revolution was a major achievement for humankind: it made erroneous the Malthusian predictions of the 1960s and 70s that it would be impossible to provide enough food for a rapidly growing world population and that major humanitarian crises, including famines, would occur in several countries within a few years, particularly in South Asia. In a wider Atlantic perspective, the need for a new green revolution is particularly obvious in Africa today, as revealed by an examination of past trends for agricultural production and trade flows: Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) and the West Asia/North Africa region (WANA) show a large and growing net agricultural trade deficit. And all projection and prospective analyses suggest that this deficit will continue to grow. Yet, total rural population will also continue to expand making it impossible for these two large regions to follow the agricultural modernization path, through substitution of capital for labor, which other regions of the world have gone through, or are currently going through.
La conférence internationale sur le climat « COP 21 » qui se tiendra à Paris du 30 Novembre au 11 décembre 2015 offre une occasion incontournable de s’interroger sur le « coût carbone » des industries de matières premières, notamment minérales. La question de l’impact de la filière de l’aluminium primaire sur les gaz à effet de serre (GES) mérite en particulier d’être posée, tant elle est importante.
The 16th Annual Global Development Conference has been dedicated this year to the theme of ‘Agriculture for Sustainable Growth: Challenges and Opportunities for a New ‘Green Revolution’. One of the sub-themes that has been addressed during this event is related to the design of the optimal agricultural policy supposed to lead towards development, especially in low-income countries. The objective of this blog is to cover the key elements that make an agricultural policy successful and how this latter contributes to sustainable development.
We finished Part I - Solving the Capital Formation Issue with a question? How should institutional investors go about looking for the best partners to help them make successful investments in Africa; and fundamentally, the real question to ask is, what are the variables required for building successful investment platforms in Africa?