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Thursday, May 31, 2012

AfDB Launches Initiative to Invest in Agribusiness in Africa


This initiative has the potential to catalyze unprecedented levels of investments into the agribusiness sector throughout the African continent


Press Release

ARUSHA, Tanzania, May 30, 2012/ -- The African Development Bank Group (AfDB) (http://www.afdb.org) launched today, at the AfDB Annual General Meetings, a Fund of Funds focused on agribusiness investments on the African continent. This transformative initiative will address growing food security concerns and unleash the largely untapped potential of the African agriculture and agribusiness sectors.

The launch of the initiative comes as African agriculture and food security gain increasing prominence on the global agenda, with the recent G8 Summit in Camp David pledging to promote investments in sustainable agriculture on the continent. Speaking from Camp David, AfDB President Donald Kaberuka stated: “There was broad consensus that it is the right thing to do, it is doable and it’s good for the world. The Summit was about growth, and growth in Africa begins with agriculture.”

“This initiative has the potential to catalyze unprecedented levels of investments into the agribusiness sector throughout the African continent. The potential will of course only materialize through efficient and responsive implementation.

I have no doubt that with the combined experience of the international fund manager, its local African banking partner, the World Wildlife Fund (WWF)as environmental advisor, and AfDB's oversight as sponsor, this transformative goal will be achieved in the medium term,” says Mouhamadou Niang, Manager at AfDB’s Private Sector Department.

The Fund of Funds will be in compliance with a state-of-the-art environmental and social management system, currently being developed by AfDB in cooperation with the WWF. The initiative is in line with AfDB’s strategy to support private sector development on the continent.

It is complementary to current efforts undertaken by AfDB’s in cooperation with the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and The United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) in the context of the African Agribusiness and Agro-industries Development Initiative (3ADI).

As the first initiative of this nature on the continent, this Fund of funds will catalyze investment into the agribusiness sector with the ultimate goal of inclusive job creation and promoting innovative, environmentally sustainable approaches throughout the agribusiness value chain.


Distributed by the African Press Organization on behalf of the African Development Bank.


Contact:

Technical:
Carlotta Saporito
Tel: +216 7110 3223

Media:
Onike Nicol Houira
Tel: +216 7110 3227

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