Africa Fertilizer Summit Proceedings
The New Partnership for Africa's Development (NEPAD) recognizes the crucial role of economic growth in Africa and the need for a comprehensive strategy to promote agricultural development, food security, and rural progress. To achieve this vision, NEPAD has adopted the Comprehensive Africa Agricultural Development Programme (CAADP), which aims to achieve 6% annual growth in agricultural production. However, African farmers face numerous challenges, including low productivity, limited access to agricultural technologies, and weak markets. A significant obstacle is the severe depletion of soils due to decades of nutrient mining, resulting in impoverished soil fertility and the inability to feed the growing population sustainably. Addressing Africa's fertilizer crisis is essential for unleashing the continent's agricultural potential. Currently, fertilizer usage in Africa is only 10% of the global average, averaging eight kilograms per hectare. To overcome this crisis, urgent and bold actions are required. The African Union (AU) convened the Africa Fertilizer Summit in 2006, where African leaders expressed their commitment to solving the fertilizer crisis and achieving a Green Revolution in Africa. The AU's resolution outlines several vital measures to accelerate farmers' access to fertilizers. These include increasing fertilizer usage from the current average of 8 kilograms per hectare to at least 50 kilograms per hectare by 2015, reducing the cost of fertilizer procurement through policy harmonization and tax exemptions, improving farmers' access to fertilizers through networks and subsidies, and investing in infrastructure and financing facilities for input suppliers. The resolution also emphasizes promoting regional fertilizer production, trade, and intra-regional cooperation. Africa's agricultural productivity has stagnated, resulting in chronic food insecurity, poverty, and economic stagnation. By learning from the successful Green Revolution experiences in Asia and Latin America, Africa can unlock its agricultural potential and achieve sustainable development. Increasing productivity, improving farmers' access to inputs, and addressing the fertilizer crisis are essential steps toward ending hunger, reducing poverty, and spurring economic growth in Africa. Establishing monitoring mechanisms and a dedicated financing mechanism will ensure the effective implementation of these measures. With strong commitment and collaboration among governments, development partners, and the private sector, Africa can pave the way for a uniquely African Green Revolution that ensures its people's dignity, peace, and food self-sufficiency.
Green revolution, Fertilizers