International Fund for Agricultural Development - President of the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) Kanayo Nwanze has said investing in small producers in Africa, most of whom are women, is the most sustainable way to bring about a transformation of the rural economy.
Addressing farmers and agricultural scientists at the Mauritius Cane Industry Agency (MCIA) at Réduit, in the centre of the island nation of Mauritius Wednesday, Dr Nwanze said IFAD focuses primarily on poor women and men in remote and marginalised areas.
'We help them to increase food production, crops, fisheries and livestock in order to earn sustainable income,' PANA quoted him to have said.
According to the IFAD boss, agriculture also generates peaceful co-existence and national security and peace.
'Agriculture offers enormous promise for Africa and it has got the power to fight poverty and feed the people', Dr Nwanze said. 'We have the knowledge, we have the means, we have the tools, if we have the will, we’ll succeed.'
Speaking about Mauritius, Dr Nwanze said he had come to see how IFAD can take its partnership with the island to another level and how it can be part of the island’s strategic plan in terms of food security.
'We have seen a lot of transformation in Mauritius where IFAD has invested about US$23 million in thirty years. This is a small amount. We are looking at how we can help at the level of regional cooperation and integration,' he said.
After a three-day visit, Dr. Nwanze and his team were due to leave the island tonight for the Seychelles.