Recent crises show need to increase local food production - Minister
Friday، 20 May 2022 - 07:41 PM
Minister of Agriculture and Land Reclamation El-Sayyed el Qussair said Friday that the latest global crises showed the importance of increasing local food production.
Global crises; such as the coronavirus pandemic, the global climate change and the Russian-Ukrainian crisis, have raised global food prices and prompted top food-exporting countries to impose restrictions on their supplies to importing countries, the minister told a virtual meeting grouping African ministers of agriculture and finance.
Africa is rich in natural resources, including 930 million hectares of arable land, the minister said, noting that the total population of the African continent amounted to nearly 1.3 billion people.
He further underlined that the food gap in African countries amounted to about dlrs 50 billion annually. Also, about 280 million Africans suffered from food insecurity and malnutrition, he added.
Arable land in Africa is underutilized with only about 50 percent being cultivated, the minister stressed.
Increasing food production requires cooperation and coordination between African countries to ensure the optimal use of available agricultural resources, achieve sustainable agricultural development, provide food security, and achieve the African Development Agenda 2063, the minister said.