The Graça Machel Trust (GMT), the Mandela Institute for Development Studies (MINDS), the Food, Agriculture, and Natural Resources Policy Analysis Network (FANRPAN), and the Centre for Coordination of Agricultural Research and Development for Southern Africa (CCARDESA) have partnered to host a high-level policy dialogue themed "Transforming Agriculture in Africa". The dialogue will be held in Maputo, Mozambique from the 20th to the 22nd of November, 2018 at the VIP Grand Hotel.
The dialogue is set to bring together great minds from across the African continent in agriculture, food security, and nutrition. The policy dialogue has attracted various stakeholder groups, including, policy research institutions, universities, farmer organisations, agri-business, agricultural financiers, civil society, private sector, policy makers, oversight bodies, and the media. It will have sub-themes focused on youth, women, and children, nutrition, and policies that can transform African agriculture.
GMT's acting Chief Executive Officer, Dr. Shungu Gwarinda said, "The dialogue is important as it will bring issues around the gendered nature of food production and the importance of financing women in the agricultural value chain. It will also highlight the need to promote the diversification of crops produced at household level to promote nutrition to the minimum acceptable in the first 1000 days of life."
Speaking on the dialogue, MINDS' Director, Mr. Ian Mashingaidze said, "with Africa being the youngest continent with 40% of the population being under the age of 25, agriculture has the potential to absorb a huge percentage of that population along its entire value chain, thus addressing the huge unemployment challenge. This dialogue provides a space for the youth to explore opportunities in the sector, including agripreneurship."
Commenting about the 2018 dialogue, Mr. Munhamo Chisvo, the Chief Executive Officer of FANRPAN, said, "This dialogue clearly demonstrates FANRPAN's role as a convener. That we are able to open this dialogue platform up for the participation of like-minded institutions, cements our position as a multi-stakeholder policy network, working collaboratively towards the transformation of agriculture in Africa".
A key outcome of the policy dialogue will be stakeholder resolutions from the thematic areas. The dialogue will help to amplify the voice of non-state actors, affording them an opportunity to highlight the challenges encountered by women, children and youth, and the role that transformed agriculture can play to address these.