Agriculture is one of the most important economic and social sectors in the majority of African countries. However, its potential is still not fully exploited. Given the trends of African population growth and changing demand, there is an urgent need to increase value addition and investment in agriculture. According to World Bank, investment in agriculture is two to four times more effective in raising incomes among the very poor than in other sectors.
The agri-food sector is of economic importance both in Africa and in Europe, accounting for almost € 11 billion of EU imports and over € 8 billion of EU exports in 2012. Private investment flows to Africa have also been steadily increasing and there is clearly a fast-growing interest among private investors in the potential of African agribusiness.
Options for leveraging the private sector for inclusive and sustainable development will be discussed at the forthcoming roundtable No. 3 on "Inclusive models in agri-food chains". The round table takes place in the EU-Africa Business Forum on 31 March and is jointly organised by the Directorate-General for Agriculture and Rural Development of the European Commission and the Europe, Africa, Caribbean and Pacific Liaison Committee (COLEACP).
The outcome of the round table will feed the set of recommendations to be presented to the Heads of State and Government Summit in the form of declaration.