Rwanda â€˜food secureâ€™ as Africa commits to end hunger
Rwanda still has enough food in its basket despite climatic changes that hit the expected harvests in season B this year, according to the countryâ€™s Ministry of agriculture.
The ministryÂ saysÂ food availability for the season is still 125 percent higher than the national food needs, puttingÂ a reliefÂ fromÂ increasing food prices on the market that would arise intoÂ consumersÂ spendingÂ more money toÂ maintainÂ theirÂ purchasing power forÂ staple foods.
The price of food commodities are essential in determining the countryâ€™s annual inflation which contributes much to the economic performance of the country, implying that any change in prices of foods would affect inflation rate.
â€œwe still have enough food to sell, our suppliers have not yetÂ complained about increasing prices due toÂ failure to get foods fromÂ farmers, thatÂ is why prices are still stable,â€Â said Mukabudigiri, fruit and vegetable seller in Kimironko market
The ministry notes that it has set up mitigation levels to help a proper transition from season B shortages to season C where positive harvests mainly of vegetables are expected.
â€œTherefore, it is plausible to say that the measures Rwanda has put in place are sufficient to mitigate any impact that climate change might have had last season,â€ the statement from the Ministry released late last month says.
Meanwhile, such effort puts Rwanda at a secure position as African leaders renew their commitment to achieve food and nutrition security for shared prosperity of the people on the continent.
â€œIt is time for heads of state to put agriculture at the top of national development agenda and lead the way on a sure path to development for their people. Prosperity is within reach â€“ itâ€™s in our hands.â€Â Â Echoed Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma African Union Chairperson
During the signing of the Malabo Declaration at the 23rd Ordinary Session of the Assembly of the African Union Heads of State and Government last month, leaders committed to cut poverty in half by 2025.
â€œWhile their collective pledge is important, it is now time to move beyond words and for Africaâ€™s political leadership to act..,â€ said Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma.
Agriculture is Africaâ€™s solution to long term social and economic development issues including food security, youth unemployment, gender inequality and climate change.
â€œA strong agricultural sector will provide employment and generate economic growth which means jobs and incomes for Africans,â€ said AUC Commissioner for Rural Economy and Agriculture, Rhoda Peace Tumusiime. â€œBut public and private sector investment in agriculture is essential.â€
Accordingly, leaders committed to Increase both public and private investment finance in agriculture, Halve poverty by 2025 through inclusive agricultural growth and transformation, boost intra-Africa trade in agricultural commodities and services.
They also committed to end hunger in Africa by 2025,enhance resilience of livelihoods and production systems to climate change variability and other related risks as well as committing to mutual accountability to actions and results
Experts are optimistic that the new targets are likely to be achieved and increase the continentâ€™s food basket considering the positive growth outlook of most agricultural sectors in the past years, which will see governments move in to create a policy and infrastructure environment to boost agriculture which is the economic backbone of the continent.