AFAP Press Release
Promoting private sector investment in fertilizer trade to boost food security
Dar es Salaam, TANZANIA, 26 September – Actors in the global fertilizer industry are accelerating action on partnerships, investments and innovation towards improving fertilizer access and trade in Africa to boost food security currently threated by climate change.
Boosting the commercial supply and distribution of fertilizer in order to increase agricultural productivity and production is the heart of the activities undertaken by African Fertilizer and Agribusiness Partnership (AFAP). AFAP, an international non-profit organization which is based in Johannesburg, South Africa works with the private sector to establish competitive, responsible and sustainable fertilizer markets in Africa which meet the needs of smallholder farmers for fertilizers that are affordable and appropriate for their crops and soils. AFAP is collaborating with CRU Events to co-host the Africa Fertilizer Agribusiness Conference 2016 in Tanzania from 10-12 October 2016. Formed in 2015, the ESAF provides a means for sustained dialogue between the public and private sector on key policy and regulatory issues constraining the commercial supply of fertilizer in the region; identify projects and initiatives that public and private sector actors can jointly implement; and work to attract public and private investment in the fertilizer value chain that can help to achieve a food secure Africa.
This second edition of ESAF follows the inaugural meeting in Lusaka, Zambia in September 2015. With the theme, Boosting Global Fertilizer Trade and Agribusiness in Africa through Partnership, Investment and Innovation, the Africa Fertilizer Agribusiness 2016 conference brings together more than 300 delegates to share insights, tackle problems and present joint solutions to share insights, tackle problems and present joint solutions in order to boost investments in fertilizer supply and trade in Africa. The delegates include government policy and decision-makers, fertilizer suppliers (manufacturers, importers, distributors and agro dealers), farmers, research institutions, mining companies, logistics companies, equipment and technology suppliers, as well as independent market analysts and consultants.
“Fertilizers are a food production lifeline and a thriving fertilizer industry means more productive farmers and better livelihoods,” says Richard Mkandawire, AFAP Vice-President. “The second edition of the ESAF is being convened at a time of renewed global interest in agriculture development as expressed in the agreement of the Sustainable Development Goals and the ZERO Hunger campaign all of which serve to strengthen the resolve to banish hunger and poverty in Africa by investing in the right inputs to ensure smallholder farmers are productive and profitable.”
Mkandawire said the challenge of food production in Africa is a clarion call for coordinated efforts to transform African agriculture and hence accelerate the continent’s economic growth, secure jobs and improve livelihoods. . Africa needs to plug its ‘soil nutrient deficit’ through a holistic approach to increase fertilizer supply and use in order to enhance household and national food production. This will result in agricultural GDP growth, improved nutrition, and job creation and raised rural incomes through SME
“Fertilizers play a critical role in securing better productivity for African farmers but in combination with other inputs such better seeds and agronomic practices. Africa’s soils are generally poor and manure alone cannot restore their productivity,” said Mkandawire. “Private sector participation is key to building and sustaining a strong fertilizer supply chain in Africa and this conference will explore opportunities to boost investment and trade while also boosting agriculture growth.”
High transaction costs throughout Africa are one of several barriers to smallholder farmers accessing and using fertilizers, a situation AFAP is working to change by designing and implementing Agribusiness Partnership Contracts (APCs) which contribute to the development of effective fertiliser markets by providing financial and technical support to participants at all levels of the fertilizer value chain.
The African Fertilizer and Agribusiness Partnership (AFAP) is an independent non-profit organization founded by a Partnership of African development organization. It works to establish more competitive and sustainable fertilizer markets in Africa and to contribute to an African Green Revolution. AFAP unites the expertise and dedication of the public and private sectors to increase fertilizer affordability and accessibility for African smallholder farmers. Using an innovative partnership contract, AFAP joins industry and development interests to inspire productivity, food security and prosperity in Africa. It builds on the work of the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP), a framework for achieving ambitious agricultural development goals set in place by African nations and leader
CRU Events is recognized globally for the organization of high quality global conferences and exhibitions in the mining, metals and fertilizer industries. This is the first time CRU will convene an event in Africa, and it is doing so with AFAP.
For further information and interviews, please contact:
Regional Business Development Manager - East and Southern Africa & Project Manager for the African Fertilizer Volunteers Program (AFVP)
Edenburg Terraces, Block D, Third Floor
348 Rivonia Boulevard,
P.O. Box 53 Rivonia,
Tel: + 27 (0)11 844 7332