President to open Asia-Africa Agri-Business Forum Tuesday

New Delhi, Feb 2: President Pranab Mukherjee will Tuesday inaugurate a three-day Asia-Africa Agri-Business Forum here to deliberate on issues faced by the agriculture sectors in Africa and Asia.

The conference, where agriculture ministers of some 15 African countries and Asian delegations will take part, is being organized jointly by the ministries of commerce, agriculture, food processing industries and the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI).

The conference agenda, according to FICCI, focuses on the need in Asia and Africa “to overcome the challenge of increasing agricultural production and productivity and making agri-business an efficient business enterprise capable of competing in the international market”.

The highlight of the forum will be the technical sessions on access to market and finance in agri-business, contract farming in Asia and Africa, farm inputs; technology, resources, manpower and farm mechanization technology, FICCI said.

India has begun moves to help Africa set up agri-business centres, seed incubators, modern laboratories and joint projects as part of an enhanced partnership in agriculture to achieve food and nutrition security, promote entrepreneurship and create a trillion-dollar food market by 2030.

According to a FICCI-PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) report in Sub-Saharan Africa and most of Asian countries, agro-based industry needs a major transformation in order to generate more job opportunities, revenues and food for the growing population.

IANS