Investing in Sustainable Development in Africa, the Top Priority for Agricultural Development

Shawgei Salah Ahmed

Africa has witnessed wide changes and radical differences since the beginning of this century, making it the focus of everyone’s attention in various fields, whether the fields of energy, entrepreneurship, social development, civilized construction of cities, or various fields of industrialization, as it possesses all the human and natural ingredients that help in its rapid renaissance in a time Standard, but the important question to ask is what does Africa want from the world, what does Africa need first.

When an investor comes from outside Africa to start his investments in it, he is not doing so because of humanitarian motives – unless it is a charitable institution -. Any investment anywhere in the world is subject only to the laws of supply and demand and profit and loss, and nothing else. In recent years, Africa has achieved large investment flows in all fields. Tourism, energy, start-ups, industry, agriculture, renewable energy, and others. What is the reason that makes the investor with the capital leave Europe, the Americas or Asia, and head to sub-Saharan Africa to launch his project?

The answer to this question is, Africa is a new market for the establishment of infrastructure for-profit and trade, large markets capable of consuming the largest possible amount of manufactured materials and services, but the question remains, what does Africa want from the world, are their ready-made plans at the continental level or the level Regional needs or a roadmap for new investors, we need to answer this question to plan for sustainable, effective and integrated development in Africa.

The importance of agricultural investment in Africa

The economic potential of Africa lies heavily in its various resources and industries. However, agriculture is one area that can play a very important role in the expected economic growth of the continent. Geologically, the African continent holds more than 60% of the world’s fertile agricultural land. In economic terms, more than 25% of the continent’s GDP comes from agriculture. It is worth noting that the value of agriculture for trade and economic growth is expected to reach $1 trillion by 2030 in Sub-Saharan Africa (compared to $313 billion in 2010). Hence, considering agriculture with an economic intent rather than just feeding families – as is the norm in most African societies – should be at the top of the agenda for economic transformation and development, according to the World Bank report

Priorities required establishing sustainable development in Africa:

Africa Economic Development Report 2013 subtitled Intra-African Trade: Unleashing the Dynamic of the Private Sector, on How to promote the private sector to advance intra-African trade. The report argues that African countries to develop productive capacity building and local entrepreneurship, In this report, many points to be paid attention to develop clear strategies and define landmarks, especially concerning the following points, or in other words, answering the essential questions raised in the report, such as:

(a) What are the opportunities for cross-border trade and what are the reasons? What lies behind not taking full advantage of those opportunities?

(b) How can African countries enhance the implementation of existing regional agreements? To promote intra-African trade?

(c) What are the factors that limit the ability of African firms to produce goods? And services that are competitive in export markets?

(d) How can African countries ensure that trade between countries is promoted? African countries rely mainly on national and regional entrepreneurs to achieve making the most of Africans?

(e) How can the benefits of regional trade be broadly generalized and distributed among the countries?

(f) Are there external factors impeding intra-African trade and how can they Can development partners contribute to unlocking Africa’s trade potential? African investments in Africa are the most important sustainable solutions.

African investments in Africa are the first and best solutions:

Moroccan investments in the African continent moved from 907 million dirhams in 2007 to 5.4 billion dirhams in 2019, for example, direct investments in the countries of sub-Saharan Africa, in more than 14 countries, led by Côte d’Ivoire, Chad, Senegal, Madagascar, Cameroon and Mauritius, most of which are in the areas of development The banking sector to facilitate the access of small and medium-sized companies to finance, due to the continent’s need to develop the pharmaceutical industry, strengthen infrastructure, electricity, and housing, and improve agricultural productivity. Herein lays the strength of Moroccan investments, because they respond to these shortcomings and invest in them to improve the conditions of African citizens.”

For example, the total trade exchange between Egypt and African countries reached $4.2 billion during the first eight months of 2018, compared to $3.4 billion during the same period in 2017, an increase of $777.4 million. The Egyptian policy aimed to enhance economic and trade cooperation with the Nile Basin countries to develop common interests. According to the data of the Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics in December 2018, the value of trade exchange between Egypt and the Nile Basin countries increased by about 17.5% during the first 10 months of 2018 (the period From January to October 2018), it amounted to about $1.38 billion, compared to $1.139 billion during the same period in 2017.

Total Egyptian exports to these countries increased by about 8.9% during the same period in 2018, to record about $876 million, compared to $804 million in 2017, total Egyptian imports from these countries increased by 50.4% during the same period in 2018, reaching $504 million, compared to about $335 million in 2017.

In the end, there are several elements that African decision-makers must consider such as, first, Africa needs to reduce barriers to cross-border trade. Bureaucratic procedures and excessive regulation prevent goods, services, ideas, and resources from flowing freely between countries. Increased intra-regional trade can generate the necessary pressure and resources to improve infrastructure. Second, government debt and investment must be more transparent. This will give people a greater ability to express their opinion on the contracts and obligations undertaken by their governments and is a critical basis for implementing the rule of law.

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