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Africa urged to make greater use of Chinese tech knowledge in agriculture

By Otiato Opali in Nairobi, Kenya | China Daily | Updated: 2021-03-10 10:45

In order to fully revolutionize its agricultural sector, the African continent needs to utilize its close ties and cooperation with China in terms of technology transfer, skills and policy development, said Andrew Cox, the chief of staff and strategy at the Alliance for a Green Revolution in Africa.

AGRA is an alliance which promotes uniquely African solutions designed to meet the continent's specific environmental and agricultural needs so they can sustainably boost production and gain access to rapidly growing agriculture markets.

According to AGRA, Cox said China's success in eliminating absolute poverty while encouraging industrialization and urbanization and transforming its rural and agricultural sector is an extraordinarily important example worth following for Africa. He added that promotion of agricultural and rural development, as well as poverty eradication in developing countries, especially in Africa, has always been a priority of China's foreign aid.

"Because of China's experience in transforming the entire country around agriculture, we want to see China's experience, its knowledge, its investment, its technical expertise to come through everywhere. If China can do it for a billion-plus people, then, certainly, there are many lessons, practices, experiences which can apply to the African continent," Cox said.

AGRA is interested in escalating the partnership between China and Africa to make it relevant to millions of farmers rather than focusing on individual and small projects, said Cox. He added that AGRA is part of a number of agricultural-based partnerships and projects involving China, including a highly successful venture in Mozambique which supports rice production. 

"Using Chinese know-how combined with African partners made it possible to double the rice yields over a fairly short period of time in Mozambique and that is the kind of thing that we want to see. The tremendous scale of the achievement of the Chinese experience shows that hundreds of millions of people can be taken out of poverty by getting the right kind of investments, policies and enabling environment for agriculture," Cox said.

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