Whether for profit or social motives - and often both - an increasing number of investors are targeting opportunities in African agriculture. At the same time innovative approaches for deploying aid to support farming businesses linked to smallholders are emerging. This blog provides a snapshot of who is doing what, where and how.

23 April 2010

Millions Sought for Global Fund to Aid Farms

The Obama administration is proposing to add $408 million to a global fund to boost food production and encourage good farming practices in the developing world, the Treasury Department announced on Thursday.

The fund, created after the Group of 20 meeting in Pittsburgh last year, will begin with contributions from the governments of Canada ($230 million), Spain ($95 million) and South Korea ($50 million) and from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation ($30 million). It is meant to provide money to poorer countries, particularly in Africa, that invest in local farming programs and agricultural development to increase crop yields, administration officials said.

The funds are meant to be invested to improve land use planning, irrigation and farm machinery, to provide technical help to farmers and to build better roads linking farmers with their markets. The World Bank will administer the fund and help choose projects to finance, in conjunction with the African Development Bank and the International Fund for Agricultural Development.

Link to New York Times article