13th African Union Heads of State and Government Conference Holds in Libya

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The 13th African Union Conference of Heads of State and Government is holding from June 29-July 3, 2009, in Sirte, Libya. The conference is being held on the theme: "Investing in Agriculture for Food Self-sufficiency". Like many other international organizations, the Bank Group is participating in the event. More than 80% of the continent’s population lives off agriculture, something which calls for a review of the sector’s financing modalities in order to make it more productive and to modernize the continent’s agri-food industry. At the African Union, the situation has been considered paradoxical given that the continent has great potential in this area, namely; land and water, but it lacks the strategies and means such as the mechanization of agriculture and infrastructure to exploit the water. According to an AU report, the crisis affecting the world, is also threatening global food security, and therefore AU member states must take into account these challenges and develop their water resources and the continent’s wildlife. It has also been pointed out that the continent’s agriculture does not earn enough investments, recommending therefore the need to implement the detailed programme on agricultural development in Africa.

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