30th July – 1st August 2013, In Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The Alliance for Commodity Trade in Eastern and Southern Africa (ACTESA), a specialized agency of COMESA, is holding its third Regional Stakeholder Farmers Meeting in collaboration with Ethiopia’s Ministry of Agriculture, July 30 to August 1 in Addis Ababa.
The three day conference being held under the theme “Financing Value Chains: How effective in helping farmers in the Region?” has brought together farmer’s organizations, private sector representatives, government officials, development partners, civil society and academics to share their experiences on the financing of value chains.
ACTESA expert, Argent Chuula, pointed out that:
Adding value to small-scale farmers’ products through agro-processing would have an important role in increasing the income of farmers when compared to the direct export of primary agricultural products. Financing value added activities for products would help Africa increase its competitiveness in global markets, and so improve state revenue earnings.
The three day conference will be deliberating on ways to strengthen regional integration through the financing of value chains. The forum addresses a number of topics which include:
- rural finance vs. agricultural finance,
- climate smart agriculture in the value chain development,
- farming systems in Africa within the agribusiness sector.
Other key issues discussed include financing input supply, aligning market production, innovative funding for agriculture transformation, seed development processes in the value chain sector from the farmer’s perspective and agri-entrepreneurs and agricultural SME’s among others.