|Policy strategies needed to promote permanent agricultural recovery and productivity growth in the SADC region
Plaine Magnien, Mauritius
|28 March 2004 - 30 March 2004
Acknowledgements: Conference organised in partnership with CTA (Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation ACP-EU) and The Rockefeller Foundation.
The Food, Agriculture and Natural Resources Policy Analysis Network (FANRPAN)
hosted its second high level policy dialogue at the Shandrani Hotel, Mauritius, 28 - 30
March 2004. The meeting was attended by senior policy makers representing SADC
ministries of agriculture, NEPAD Steering Committee, donors, regional and international
partner institutions and FANRPAN Secretariat, Board Members and Node Coordinators
from eleven countries. This meeting was a follow-up to the Policy Dialogue on
Agricultural Recovery, Food Security and Trade Policies in Southern Africa held in
Gaborone, Botswana, 26 – 27 March 2003.
The objectives of the meeting were to enable senior policy advisors to dialogue and reach
consensus on the priority policy issues that need to be addressed to speed up agricultural
recovery and come up with regional policy recommendations for onward transmission to
the SADC Ministers of Agriculture. The presentations comprised five plenary addresses
in the opening session, three keynote papers and six technical papers from selected
FANRPAN's strategic partners and international organisations. These presentations
were followed by discussion sessions in the plenary and working groups to further
deliberate on policy measures to achieve permanent recovery in the agricultural sector
and bankable investment project priorities for the region.
The following recommendations were made on policy measures to achieve permanent
recovery in the agricultural sector: improved macro economic policies and access to
resources; markets and trade to facilitate commercialisation of smallholder agriculture;
disaster preparedness strategies; specific policies for each of the three groups of farmers
(commercial, emerging and subsistence farmers); empowerment of farmer organizations
to participate effectively in the policy process; long-term support to research in
appropriate technology; strong farmer-research-extension linkages; diversification from
traditional staples such as maize; practical demonstration of political commitment; and
promotion of national and household food reserves.
The following bankable actions to achieve the key policy measures were identified:
improve macro economic policies and increase agricultural finance; facilitate access to
resources (land, input technology, information, seeds); develop intra-SADC and
international markets and trade to facilitate commercialisation of smallholder
agriculture; develop regional disaster preparedness strategies; and FANRPAN to
facilitate national stakeholders' forum at the national level, including the private sector.