Development partners have committed $30 billion (R517 billion) to boost food production in Africa over the next five years, said Akinwumi Adesina, the president of the African Development Bank, during closing remarks at a food security summit on Friday.
The three-day summit in Senegal's capital Dakar brought together African leaders, development banks and international partners, including the US, the EU and the UK, to mobilise funding and political commitment.
The major theme was that African countries need to boost their food production capacity, rather than relying so heavily on imports, which have left them vulnerable to price spikes and shortages.
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The continent is facing its worst food crisis ever, with more than one in five Africans – a record 278 million people – facing hunger, according to UN estimates. Heavy debt burdens from the Covid-19 pandemic and Russia's war in Ukraine, which raised prices of fuel, grain and edible oils, have added to long-term causes of food insecurity, such as climate change and conflict, experts say.