12 June 2012 Nairobi, Kenya – The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the East Africa Community (EAC) today launched a new initiative to boost food production, job and income opportunities for farmers through advancing agriculture value chains in East Africa.
The initiative spearheaded by UNDP’s African Facility for Inclusive Markets (AFIM) and the EAC Secretariat brought together multiple stakeholders representing governments, UN agencies, private sector, farmers, financiers and civil society from Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi and Ethiopia for an East Africa Project Facilitation Platform (PFP).
The East Africa PFP is discussing partnerships and value addition of the various stakeholders in strategic agri-food value chains, especially sorghum, soy and dairy. Project promoters presenting planned interventions include Africa Harvest, East Africa Dairy Development Project and UNIDO/UNDP.
“A new private sector is emerging in Africa with great potential for creating new jobs, generating higher incomes and delivering products and services for all.
“Agriculture value chains and agri-business are critical to advance food security and economic opportunities,” said Aeneas Chuma, UNDP Resident Representative and UN Resident Coordinator for Kenya, who opened the workshop in Nairobi.
“UNDP’s African Facility for Inclusive Markets is brokering partnerships and building capacity to develop inclusive markets that contribute to the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), especially toward food security and inclusive economic growth. The level of participation for this East Africa platform is very encouraging, and we will launch similar initiatives in Southern and West Africa,” said AFIM Manager Tomas Sales.
“We are highly grateful for UNDP’s support of this important regional initiative to reduce hunger and food imports by strengthening selected value chains, increasing food production and reducing post-harvest losses,” stated the EAC representative Ms. Jennifer Gache.