Science and technology are critical to transforming agricultural efficiency in Africa, according to the head of the African Development Bank.
Akinwumi Adesina urged the continent to invest more in science and technology to help make agriculture a “wealth-creating sector”, rather than one that managed rural poverty.
The AfDB president said: “There cannot be a secure Africa unless we first and foremost revive the rural economies. We must turn these areas into zones of economic prosperity. And for that to happen, we must transform the main source of livelihoods – agriculture – into a wealth-creating sector.”
In particular, investment in science and technology will help make Africa more food secure, reducing spending on imports, stabilising exchange rates and strengthening local currencies.
“A more food secure Africa will have greater savings, as disposable incomes will rise for both rural and urban populations,” Adesina said.
“A more food secure Africa will free up resources for high value food, feed, horticulture, floriculture and livestock exports to earn foreign exchange.”
He was addressing the seventh Agriculture Science Week and the Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa earlier this week, which took place in Kigali, Rwanda.