Food Security and India’s Vision of Agriculture Development in Africa
Dr. Suresh Kumar
(Africa Review, May 2012)
Agriculture is the dominant sector of Indian economy, which determines the growth and sustainability. About 65% of the population still relies on agriculture for employment and livelihood. The green revolution transformed India form a food deficient stage to a surplus food market. In a span of 3 decades, India becomes a net exporter of food grains. Remarkable results were achieved in these fields of dairying and oil seeds through white and yellow revolutions. The rich experience of India’s Green Revolution needs to be shared with the African countries that will convert the barren land of Africa into Green Horizon. This Green Horizon engrosses enhanced cereal and other agro-products in the region that will boost agro-market & automatically the rural incomes leading towards food security. The rich experiences of scientific farming technologies in India will boost Africa’s world’s food basket, micro-financing institutions to grow better, by transferring Indian expertise in this field and encouraging Indian agro-processing firms to invest in Africa and promote joint initiatives in organic farming to meet the demand world markets. “Recent policy discussions have emphasized the importance of the staple food crop sector in Sub-Saharan Africa in increasing farm productivity to achieve food security and to alleviate poverty. A critical issue in the debate is how the staple food sector can generate surpluses and how to ensure an equitable distribution of these surpluses. It is argued that the governance of food markets and commodity chains is a crucial element for efficiency and distributional effects, including for growth and food security- and that the chain governance itself is endogenous in an environment of weak contract enforcement and imperfect markets, and importantly depends on the value in the chain and on other commodity characteristics” (Alexander Sarris, 2010:77).
The Structural Adjustment Programme (SAP) started in 1960’s in Africa and focused upon the development of agriculture sector. One knows the experiences of production of Cocoa in Ghana and Ivory Coast that led to neck-throat competition among them. It ultimately benefited the European and American market as the demand of cocoa was tremendously high and the African farmers failed to cater their basic needs for survival, and nothing had come forwarded on the name of food security. As we know, the agriculture accounts for more than 25% of the GDP in most African countries and employs more than 70% of the workforce and having approximately 783 million hectares of arable land (27% of the world total). But SAP did not cater to this work force in Africa. The neo-colonial practice in Africa successfully worked from 1950 to 1990 and stopped functioning with the disintegration of erstwhile Soviet Russia and the independence of South Africa. The post 1990 globalization has marked the effective presence of developing countries of India, China, Brazil, East-Asian countries and Africa in the international market. A new development approach ‘Cohesive Development’ of developing countries has been adopted and many more countries have adopted the electoral democracy and multi-party system in their homes. India and Africa both are serious about the issue of food security and are ready to change their existing land laws, practices and adopting the new guidelines as per the needs. India is sharing its rich experiences in agriculture sector with African countries and receiving reciprocation.
The Western world looks for the bonding among developing countries as a new concept of colonialism. This connotation ‘colonialism of market economy’ cum globalization is different from the European Colonialism of political and economic sharing to Neo-colonialism of economic plunder. It is interesting to note here that both the European and American colonial master till 1990 had no role to play in this new colonialism rather they are interpreting new colonialism more vigorously with rich bandwagon. It is a hard fact that the Euro and dollar market faced a tough face of market depression since 2007 onwards. The markets of Asia, Africa and Latin America did not get a U-turn impact like Europe and America and survived with the strong base of educated middle class. All of them come under as a group of South-South unity and having broader understanding on political, economic and social milieu. Indian agriculture produces 100 million tons of milk and 200-300 millions tons of vegetable goods but able to process 10 percent of the total and 40 percent gets wasted. Indian political leaders and industries are not looking towards western solution to this problem and re-think its approach of development. It is common consensus that agriculture needs value addition in its production and India’s federal polity need to work for economic federalism and persuade State leadership to act as execution driven leadership. This is the biggest challenge in India and the major development paradigm of North-South divide. The developed countries or North bloc have no issue of economic federalism and their provinces/states are capable to drive their own maneuver. But the developing countries or South bloc has adopted and are practicing the federalism but with complications of allocations of financial powers, collection and dispersal of taxation, complex social matrix including all ethnic issues. The Center and most of the State’s leadership has taken this issue seriously leading towards productive solution.
These initiatives are the timely step to deal with the Euro-dollar depression and it boosts India’s agriculture sector towards food for all. Do all these efforts lead towards India’s food security or new colonialism? What’s wrong with India’s sharing this expertise with the other members of South bloc mainly to African counterparts? There is no doubt about it that China has successfully implemented the idea of food security and alleviating the poverty in practice at home front. The second largest population of India has adopted their own pattern of development to over come the problem of agricultural production and its safety measures to reach to the maximum people. One fails to understand the idea of European and American philosophy of new colonialism and India act as colonial power in Africa. It looks that Euro-dollar crisis is looking towards the market of Asia, Africa and Latin America for their own survival and when it fails to sustain in these market with the development of indigenous technologies of developing countries, it looks revolting to the developed world. This is new colonialism or one may add the Euro-dollar cultural colonialism by imposing their philosophies on the developing world. Despite their past two hundred years of colonial and neo-colonial supremacy of Euro-dollar identity, it looks erstwhile superiority now in the developing world. India is working on another agricultural revolution to get its value addition and propagate it among the developing countries of Africa. This propagation will give a tough time to the wild-mongering SAP policies in Africa and other developing countries and introduce the idea of food productivity, processing and distribution. India is adopting e-based portal with single window these policies and the Euro-dollar domination of world looks it as a move towards new colonialism. The South bloc fought against the colonialism and got independence and it is not possible for the developing countries like India to move as colonizer either in Africa or any parts of the world. India respects the sovereignty of all of its neighbors and no country has come forward to the idea of India acting as colonizer.
The Post Summit 2011 development in Agro-Infrastructure Sector
There is a new economic growth story emerging from Africa. Africa possesses all the prerequisites to become a major growth pole of the world. India will work with Africa to realize its vast potential. India believes that a new vision is required for Africa’s development and participation in global affairs. Both will enhance the development partnership between the two regions, which is founded on the pillars of mutual equality and common benefit. India’s exports to Africa have risen from US$10.3 billion in 2006-07 to US$21.1 billion in 2010-11, primarily due to increase in exports of transport equipments and petroleum products, wherein India’s imports from Africa have more than doubled from US$14.7 billion in 2006-07 to US$32.3 billion in 2010-11, with the African continent now accounting for 9.1 percent share in India’s total imports. Consequently, due to large imports from the region, India’s trade deficit with Africa has also increased to US$11.2 billion in 2010-11, implying that India has become a major market for African products. Table-1 highlights India’s agriculture sector export and import items to Africa.
Line of Credit (LoC) of India and Agriculture Sector Development
Export-Import Bank of India (EXIM Bank) has in place LoCs to enhance agriculture sector in Africa. Currently, 105 LoCs are earmarked for agriculture, infrastructure and related projects amounting to more than US$ 4 billion covering over 47 countries in the African region. Some of the LoCs beneficiaries’ African countries (Table-1) dealing with agriculture sector are:
- “Angola– Railway rehabilitation project/Industrial park/Textile project/and acquisition of tractors from India;
- Burkina Faso– Rural electrification/Agricultural equipments and Cyber city project;
- Burundi– Hydro-electric project;
- Cameroon– Plantation project;
- Chad– Setting up of cotton yarn plant, plant for assembly of agricultural equipment;
- Cote d’Ivoire– Project for renewal of urban transport system in Abidjan and for agricultural projects/IT & Biotechnology park/Fisheries and coconut fibre processing plant/Electricity interconnection project;
- Equatorial Guinea– potable water plant project;
- Eritrea– Agricultural and educational projects;
- Ethiopia– Energy transmission and distribution project Development of sugar industry;
- Ghana-Rural electrification, agriculture, communication and transportation projects;
- Lesotho– Export of tractors, pump sets, consultancy services and irrigation equipment;
- Madagascar- Rice productivity and fertilizer production project;
- Malawi- Cotton processing/irrigation & threshing plant/one-village one-project;
- Mali- Rural electrification, and setting up of agro machinery and tractor assembly plant;
- Mauritania- Potable water project;
- Niger- Acquisition of transport equipments, transformers, motor pumps and flourmills;
- Rwanda- Power projects;
- Senegal- rural electrification project and fishing industry development project, irrigation project;
- Sierra Leone- Procurement of tractors, harvesters and pesticides/potable water project;
- Tanzania- Export of tractors, pumps and vehicles;
- Zambia- Hydroelectric project/export of buses, motor vehicles, motor cycles and supply of vocational tool kits.”
Source: Background Note, 2012: 71-72: emphasis mine.
The post Forum Summit and the basis of India-Africa Conclaves documented that the Africa has approximately 783 million hectares of arable land (27% of the world total), which is adequate to effectively feed its population. It is the only region in the world where agricultural productivity has not grown noticeably. Increased agricultural output and income needs a green revolution with value addition in Africa. It will influence directly the output of the manufacturing and services sector. Agriculture has been at the forefront of the recent transition in India-Africa relations.
The agro-industry in Africa needs farm mechanization that will facilitate increase in productivity. The production boost in agriculture is the only way to initiate the agro-industry in Africa. It should be remembered that once there will be surplus production of food in Africa, the agro-industry will get the input of raw materials to produce different food products and cater to the needs of urban as well as rural areas. Approximately 80 Indian companies have collectively invested US$2.3 billion in Ethiopia, Kenya, Madagascar, Senegal and Mozambique (Indian farming companies buying in Africa. 2011). Some African countries are offering land on lease for 99 years to overseas farmers, and several farmers from Punjab in India have already migrated to these countries and begun farming (African nations offering land for free to Indian farmers,” The Economic Times website, http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/economy/agriculture/African-nations-offering-land-for-free-to-Indian-farmers/articleshow/6293149.cms, accessed 28 January 2011). Close to 70 Indian companies are working in the farming sector in this region (Indian business groups are investing heavily in Africa, 2011: emphasis mine). Such investments will generate local employment as well as create opportunities for local skill development.
Case Study of Africa Invitation to India for Agriculture Investment
India and Botswana agriculture, livestock and human resources development cooperation started in 1999. Indian seeds (Maize and Paddy rice) have been sent to this country for experimentation. A project for import of Indian Buffalos to this country has been set up. The farmer’s project has been finalized and since 29th October 1999 six farmers form Punjab have landed to this country in view of realizing this project. “The tender for the purchase of Indian tractors at large scale in under process.
- Burkina Faso
The cotton from Burkina Faso exports to India. Burkina Faso is second largest producer of cotton in West Africa and ranks third in entire Africa. Today, many trainees from Burkina Faso are coming to India for training in computer education, diplomacy, telecommunications, etc. Botswana is looking forward to setting up units of production of commercial farming such as fruits, vegetables, Arabic gum and cotton. Livestock occupies an important place in the economy of Burkina Faso in West Africa. The opportunity in this sector is the setting up of:
- Small industrial units for milk processing (dairy plants) breweries.
- Small industrial units for production of animal feeds.
- Small industrial units of veterinary pharmaceutical products.
- Meat processing.
- Small units for leather.
- Cattle rearing-ranching and poultry
- Industrial units of manufacturing tractors.
- Industrial units of manufacturing pump sets for irrigation.
- Industrial units of manufacturing agro-food products.
- Small Industrial units for agro-chemicals (fertilizers and pesticides).
- Industrial units of manufacturing textiles (Cotton fabrics, garment production and yarn).
- Setting up commercial farming units (fruit, vegetables, Arabic gum and cotton).
Burkina Faso exports cotton, animal skins, and leather and cashew nuts to India and imports Agro-machinery (tractors and farm implements), Rice, small and medium scale industries (e.g. oil processing) from India. Burkina Faso guarantees the foreign investors such as:
- Right of full business awareness for foreign investors.
- Right to acquire real estate, land, forested land, industrial areas in addition to concession from government.
- Right to transfer capital and profits of any investor.
- The advantages of investing in this country are:
- A possibility of Joint Venture with Burkina Faso business community.
- Low cost of labour.
- Good infrastructure (telecommunication, roads, railways and airport) and services.
- Strategic position in the heart of West Africa.
- D R Congo
The country is the land of opportunities wide open to everybody and agricultural sector is one of the priority sectors. In order to access these opportunities, the Government recommends the strategies such as: Public – Private Partnership, Public – Public Partnership and Private – Private Partnership in agriculture, forest and hydrographic, re-launch of food crops: maize, rice, tomatoes, groundnuts, bananas, resumption of palm-tree exploitation (Bandundu and Equateur), re-launch of income-generating farming: cotton, coffee, hevea, tea, cocoa, sugar cane farming, production and transportation of rough lumber (Equateur, Eastern Province, both Kasai, Bandundu, Mayumbe), bio-fuel production from palm oil, jatropha, seaweed of the river and lakes, etc, industrial timber processing (Kinshasa, Kisangani, Kananga), wood pulp production (Kinshasa), cattle breeding (Katanga, Kivu, Eastern Province, Bas-Congo), pig breeding and poultry farming all over DRC, milk production (Katanga, Kivu, Eastern Province, Bas-Congo), rehabilitation of the agro-industrial Domain of N’sele (Kinshasa) and Fluvial, sea and lake fishing. DRC’s food crops potential is tremendous and possible in manoic, maize, rice, groundnut, plantain, potato, yam, wheat, sorghum, bean, soya beans, tarot and sweet potato and market gardening is open for onion and tomato. The income-generating farming prefers fibre, hevea, millet, palm-tree, coffee, cinchona, cocoa, tobacco, cotton, pyrethrum, tea, gourd, sugar-cane, papaine, sesame, urena and voandzou (Invest in D R Congo, 2012: 12).
The country has 111 million hectare of land out of which 74.3 million (45% of the total area) is suitable for agriculture. However due to underdevelopment only 18 million hectare is under cultivation. The government offers about 3 million hectare (5% of the available land) to local and foreign investors. The prominent investor ‘Sheikh Mohamad Al-Amoudi currently leases 10,000 hectares for a pilot project for rice production in Gambella Regional State. Under the agreement his company will be allowed to export no more than 60% of its production and 40% will be for local consumption. He is currently looking to increase the investment to US$450 million and expand the area for cultivation’ (Ethiopia: Land of Tomorrow, 2012: 5). The foreign investors may look for products such as:
- Food Crops- Cereals and pulses, Oil Crops
- Beverage Crops- Coffee, Tea
- Horticulture- Fruits and vegetables, herbs and cut flower
- Cotton, Sugarcane plantation and sugar processing
- Rubber and Palm tree plantation and Apiculture- honey and beeswax
- Bio-fuel production- feed stocks for bio-diesal: Jatropha, palm oil, castor, feed stocks for ethanol: sugar cane, sugar beet, potatoes, corn, etc.
- Livestock- 43 million heads of cattle, 31 million heads of sheep, 27 million heads of goats, 53 million poultry, 2.3 million camels, 7 million equines. The investment opportunities here focuses on animal fattening, animal feed processing, meat processing and export abattoir for chilled and frozen meat.
The agro-processing deals with the processing and preserving of fruits and vegetables, meat products, , fish and fish products, dairy products, integrated production, processing of crude and refined edible oil from oil seeds, processing of crude and refined edible oil from oil seeds, processing of starch, cornflakes and edible oil from maize, processing of spices, production of spaghetti, macroni, etc, brewing and wine making (Ethiopia: Land of Tomorrow, 2012: 8: emphasis mine).
The government of Ethiopia provides 100% exemption for the payment of customs duty on imported capital goods, construction materials, and spare parts worth up to 15% of the total value of the capital goods to be imported. The income tax exemption gives right from 2 to 7 years for manufacturing or agro-industrial, agricultural and ICT investments.
About 57% of total land (of 23.9 million hectares) is suitable for agriculture sector in Ghana and offers opportunities in different products as shown in the Table mentioned below.
- Agriculture (Cassava, Cashew, Cotton, Sugarcane, Soya Beans, Oil Palm, Pineapples, Mango, Ostrich, Coconut, Tomatoes, etc.)
- Agro-processing (Cocoa, Fruits, Rubber, Vegetables, etc.)
- Food-grains (Rice, Millet, Sorghum, Yam, etc)
- General Infrastructure (Agricultural and Industrial Estates, Roads, Railways and Ports).
- Cattle, Sheep, Goat, Fisheries.
The government gives incentives by way of tax rebates for manufacturing in certain locations, tax holders, ranging form 5 to 10 years depending on sectors, custom import duty exemption for plant machinery, equipment and parts thereof and double taxation agreements. The tariff incentives refer to zero rated for agro inputs, plant and machinery and non-tariff incentives refer to observation of regulations on import/export of agro-products (Doing Business with Ghana, 2012: 28).
Agriculture is the mainstay of the Kenyan economy with great potential for growth. It currently represents 24 percent of GDP. More than a third of Kenya’s agricultural produce is exported and accounts for about 60% of Kenya’s total exports. The vision for agriculture sector is to be innovative commercially oriented and modern, offering the investment opportunities in Sugarcane development, Value Addition and Marketing Infrastructure. This will involve the wholesale projects: Two wholesale markets for fresh produce in Nairobi, a wholesale market in Nakuru and a wholesale market in Mombasa. The Livestock production is one of the major activities in the sector that includes Dairy industry and Hides, Skins and Leather industries.
The fisheries sector plays an important role in the national economy contributing 0.5% to GDP in 2006
Areas for Private Sector Investment are Value addition in fisheries products, Certified fish seed breeding facilities to avail quality seed to fish farmers, Investment in Tropical Aquaria parks for local and overseas tourism, Fish leather industry and Cooling-plants in major landing bays of Mbita, Sindo, Sori, Sio port, Usenge and Port Victoria.
The water sector offers good investment opportunities in Water Storage and Drilling: Capacity Building of National Water Conservation and Pipeline Corporation and Mzima II Pipeline Project (Kenya- A Hub for Investment, 2012).
The agricultural sector in Mauritius is being re-engineered to cater for the rising needs of the global food security crisis with an increased diversification of agricultural production backed by modern techniques and technologies. Investment opportunities in the sector can be captured in advanced agricultural technology including precision farming, hydroponic cultivation, green and organic farming among others. Furthermore, the transformation of the sugar industry in the sugarcane clusters present opportunities for the production of high value-added sugar, by products and energy.
Seafood and Aquaculture Based on a current world per capita consumption of 16 kg., the global seafood market is estimated at USD 100 billion per year. Mauritius has an exclusive economic zone of 1.9 million sq. km and is set to emerge as a leading seafood hub with seafood export accounting for 16.1% of total exports in 2009. Mauritius also offers the opportunity for sustainable fish farming activities in its lagoon. Furthermore local companies are also involved in fish transshipment, seafood processing activities and ancillary services (Mauritius.2011:23).
The wide diversity of soil types and climatic conditions, access to over 60 rivers and 36 million hectares of arable land greatly enhance Mozambique’s potential as an agricultural exporter. The main agricultural exports include cashew nuts, cotton, sugarcane, a variety of fruits and vegetables and tobacco, but virtually any crop can grown easily in Mozambique – and harvesting can occur months before other countries. The rich waters in the Indian Ocean offer a variety of seafood products from world famous tiger prawns to crayfish to langoustine – as well as a variety of fish such as tuna, grouper and cod. Mozambique also has 19 million hectares of productive woodland, rich in tropical hardwood and to a lesser extent eucalyptus and pine. The natural potential of the sector offers a wide range of opportunities for timber, construction materials, furniture, wood products and pulp (Institute of Export Promotion Mozambique. 2011:7).
More than 95% of cashew marketed output is produced by about 1.4 million small family farmers in Mozambique and has cashew investment opportunities, distributionof production in North 57%, Center 24% and South19%. The investment opportunities in Mozambique has fvourable agro climatic conditions for cashew production having land available for new orchards, potential for new processing plants, all producitn provinces with aces to the see (Export infraestructures) and appropriate institutional environment. The investment opprtunities in chashew plantations as per the available area is mentioned under Table-1.
The Mozambican production and its presentation on global markets require a new approach in the packaging sector, to create conditions for the country to compete in an international market, where rules are constantly changing and consumer demands are rising continuously. The MOZNEGOCIOS-International Packaging and Packaging Equipment Trade Fair 2-10 June 2011 is a public event with international scope that involves producers, suppliers and consumers of the packaging industry from Mozambique and other countries. In this second edition, the MOZNEGOCIOS fair will bring together companies of the packaging sector and agro-processing enterprises (IPEME.2011:1-4).
Mozambique offers some of the best shipping ports in Southern Africa, serving as a link to the sea for its landlocked neighbours and the rest of the world. The three main ports in Mozambique are in Maputo, Beira and Nacala. The port at Maputo is the hub the surrounding fishing and agricultural industries serving South Africa, Swaziland and Zimbabwe. The ports in Beira and Nacala serve Malawi, Zambia and Zimbabwe. Beira is linked to by road and rail to the African hinterland. The recently modernized ports in Mozambique enable them to handle millions of tons of cargo arriving from and departing to distant international destinations (Institute of Export Promotion Mozambique. 2011:8).
In 2009, the Federal Government introduced the National Food Security Programme in Nigeria to focus on both upstream and downstream activities such as production, storage, processing and the marketing of crops, livestock and fisheries (Programme on Food Processing, Storage, Marketing Out. 2009).
- Republic of Congo
The Ministry of Trade and Supplies attracts investment opportunities in Congo in the different areas of agriculture sector such as: ‘establishment of companies for rental and maintenance of agricultural equipment, fabrication of chemical fertilizers and production of natural fertilizes, revival of the business of coffee, cocoa, tobacco and others, creation of agro-food industry and revival of industries that have stopped exploitation and been privatized, such as Sanghapalm for the exploitation of oil palm at Oesso, in the north of the country, and RNPC, national palm plantations authority of Congo in the Cuvette region, establishment of the pilot villages, realization of the complex agro-industrial of oil palm, rubber and others, establishment of vegetable villages, intensification of vegetable planting around big cities, development of food crops (paddy, bean, groundnut, potato, cassava, banana, rice and maize, etc.), production of seeds of good quality, irrigation of the fields establishment of quality-control center and establishment of biotechnological laboratories’ (Investment Opportunities in Congo, 2012: 4).
The livestock production opportunities especially breeding sector attracts the restoration of ranches and farms development, production of animal feed, establishment of poultry farms and ranches, creation of processing industry of derivative livestock product, construction of abattoirs in big cities and the slaughter areas in the secondary centers, creation of purchasing centers of veterinary inputs, equipment and products, development of non-conventional livestock, such as crocodiles, turtles, pigeons, agouti, development of livestock with short-cycle reproduction (poultry, pigs, sheep’s, goats), amelioration of the forage plant and development of dairy cattle breeding. Along with it, the continental maritime fishing sector attracts the investors in establishment of structures of supply of materials and equipment of fishery at reasonable prices, establishment of structures for the factory and supply of food for fish, creation modern storage structures, establishment of transport companies for fishery products (land, river and sea freight), establishment of appropriate structures to finance fishery, construction of fishing jetty, valorisation of the lakes, development of fish breeding, breeding of freshwater crayfish and establishment of enterprises for fabrication and maintenance of fishing boats.
The forest sector of Congo attracts the ‘investors in obtaining exploitation permits and creation of exploitation companies, restoration logging companies, including industrial companies that have stopped exploitation due to diversified reasons by the management, establishment and development of tourist zones in the various wildlife reserves full of rare species and production of logs. The Congolese forests can support a production of two million m3 on the basis of a rotating exploitation with damage to their regeneration in sawing and development of wood, production of support poles of power lines, industrial processing of wood, production of pulp, exploitation of the hevea, fabrication of plant-based medicament and agro-forestry’ (Investment Opportunities in Congo, 2012: 3).
Le Parc des Expositions “TOGO 2000” of Lome will host the 9th International Trade Fair of Lome from 25th November to 12 December 2011 focuses on promotion of trade and services of all sectors of economic activities of countries in the sub-region as well as those of the other continents and contacts between professionals for the development of sub-regional and intercontinental commercial activities. This fair of Lome is opened to economic operators (manufacturers, industrialists, traders, businessmen /women and service providers) from Togo, Africa, Europe, Asia and America.
The agribusiness sector in Tunisia comprises 791 firms, employing 10 workers and more. Among these firms, 92 produce entirely for export (Table-1). The investments in the agribusiness sector have steadily increased during the period 1992-2001. They went from Million Tunisian Dollars (MTND) 100 in 1992 to MTND 204 in 2001. Their share in the manufacturing investments has been 21% in average for the same period. In 2001, the agribusiness sector occupied the 2nd rank in terms of investments in the manufacturing sector, preceded by the textile and clothing sector. ‘The exports of the agribusiness sector went from MTND 224 in 1992 to MTND 670 in 2001. The share of olive oil is 30%. The imports of the agribusiness sector totaled MTND 888 in 2001, against MTND 350 in 1992. The cereals and cereal by-products, seed oils, and sugars and sugar by –products represent 70% of the country’s imports of food products in 2001. Tunisia is the 4th international exporter of olive oil, after Spain, Italy and Greece. Given the highly-prized quality of its dates, Tunisia is the 1st world exporter of this product. 90% of the exports of frozen sea products go to Italy and Spain. 97% of the fresh tuna is exported to Japan. The agribusiness sector comprises 68 joint-venture firms, and 13, 100% foreign-owned firms. 25% of Tunisian engineers serve in the agricultural and agribusiness sector. The universities and technical institutes provied the local labour arket with some 300 specialised engineers per yar in the agribusines sector. There are also vocational training centres int eh agribusiness branch. Their training capacity is of 400 trainees per cycle (training session). A major programme is currently underway to enhane and adapt the training capacities to the needs of the firm’ (Agri-business: Achievements and Opportunities, 2012: 2).
Uganda is east Africa’s food basket. ‘A KES1-billion food processing plant was commissioned at Makerere University’s Faculty of Food Science and Technology in Uganda in 2009. The fruit and vegetable processing plant, scheduled to operate on a pilot basis, will help the department produce fruit juice and other foodstuffs for sale as well as train students to become entrepreneurs and agro-processors’ (Food Processing Plant Launched. 2011). Similarly, Britania Allied Industries, a consortium of food processing firms, plans to invest KES11 billion for the construction of a fruit juice-processing plant in Namanve, Uganda. The investment incentives in agriculture sector focuses on:
Uganda is among leading producers of coffee and bananas. It is also a major producer of tea, cotton (including organic cotton), tobacco, cereals, oilseeds (simsim, soya, sunflower, etc.), fresh and preserved fruit, vegetables and nuts, essential oils, orchids, flowers and sericulture (silk). Opportunities include commercial farming and value addition, as well as the manufacture of inputs and supply of agricultural machinery.
Uganda’s fish processing sector has expanded greatly in recent years and current export earnings for the year 2006 were close to US$146 million. Large fresh water expanses are home to a wide variety of fish products. Opportunities are available for fish farming and establishment of more fish processing factories on other lakes other than Lake Victoria, Uganda’s fish is a delicacy in Europe and has recently penetrated the US market.
Uganda is having over 4.9 million hectares of rich forest vegetation. Uganda possesses abundant potential in areas like timber processing for export, manufacture of high quality furniture/wood products and various packaging materials. There are also opportunities in afforestation and reforestation especially of medicinal trees and plants, soft wood plantations for timber, pulp & poles.
Fishing is a significant sector of the economy, but agriculture is Senegal’s principal resource accounting for almost 50% of the country’s total exports. Peanuts are the main commodity produced in the country, but attempts have been made to diversify into others, particularly cotton, the second largest export commodity, millet, sugar cane, fruit and vegetables. Phosphate is the most important mineral resource, although there are also significant iron ore deposits as well as oil. India facilitated Senegal agriculture sector on lines of credit such as:
- ‘15 million USD for acquisition of agricultural material and the creation of rural enterprises.
- 27 million USD for irrigation projects with a view to achieve rice self sufficiency.
Agriculture sector comprises of 70% of Senegalese population is central to the country’s development. India put at the disposal of 510 tractors, equipment for tilling, carts, drilling machines, pumps, trucks and maize processing and enriching equipment under Indo-Senegalese cooperation. Senegal government and Indian Farmers Fertilizer Co-operative Limited (IFFCO) signed an agreement of about $240 million. There are export opportunities in the agri-business sector, with the AGOA visa in:
- Fruit Cultivation
- Market Gardening
- Thousands of hectares of Cashew nut plantation
- Diversification of the industrial processing of groundnut.
- Fish Cultivation
- Support to the development of horticultural exports.
- Improvement of the condition of market operation.
- Support to agri-business producers and operators for a better adaptation of products to the market.
- Development of private irrigation and land-related activities’ (Dr. Suresh Kumar.2008).
Senegal is dependent on import rice that reached 400,000 tones of CFA Francs 118 billion for 2003. As an alternative, the Senegal government offers investment opportunities in this sector particularly in Senegal River Valley region. Senegal has become a leading exporter of cherry tomatoes, fine green beans, basil, green asparagus, onions, potatoes and aborigines (Dr. Suresh Kumar.2008).
Government regards the growth of the agricultural sector as a crucial element in enhancing Zambia’s foreign exchange earnings and economic development. Although the agricultural sector employs more than half of the total labour force, only 15% of the arable land in under cultivation. It is because of this potential that the government encourages investment in commercial farming. As the country is looking to diversify the economy away from copper, sectors has in agriculture production, which has not been fully exploited over the years. The sector has been performing poorly in recent years due to high input costs, inadequate infrastructure and low private investment in the sector. However to turn this around, the Government has increased its allocation of funding to the sector to address some of these constraints.
The government facilitates input tax claim for three months prior to VAT registration for businesses that have already commenced trading and reduction of VAT rate for investors in tax free zones (Zam-Indo Business Profiles, 2012:11-12).
Anyone investing not less than $500,000 in any of the priority sectors listed is entitled to fiscal incentives. The sectors are: Floriculture (Fresh flowers and dried flowers), Horticulture (Fresh and dried vegetables) and Processed foods (Wheat flour). The other processed foods include investment in Beverages and stimulants (Tea and tea products and Coffee and coffee products) and production and the processing of the following products in the textiles sector such as Cotton, Cotton yarn, Fabric and Garment and processing of Agricultural products and Forest products.
The agriculture sector remains under-capitalized with insufficient inputs and infrastructure. The Capitalization of commercial farming enterprises includes meat processing, poultry and fish farming, juice extraction, horticulture, floriculture and cotton-processing Infrastructure development and refurbishment, as well as investment in value-adding processing of agricultural equipment (Zimbabwe Investment. 2010-15).
Zanzibar, part of United Republic of Tanzania offers investment opportunities in:
- Horticulture and Floriculture.
- Fruit processing and Canning.
There is a potential for development of various types of fish, shrimps, lobsters, seaweed and other marine resources. Investors are free to choose suitable areas for:
- Deep sea fishing.
- Fish Farming
- Processing and Canning
Zanzibar is known as the Spice Islands. The investment opportunities in spices include:
- Cinnamon, Cardamom, nutmeg, black pepper, chilies, etc.
India declared during the Forum Summit about the India-Africa Food Processing Cluster that will contribute to value-addition and creation of regional and export markets, an India-Africa Integrated Textiles Cluster to support the cotton industry and its processing and conversion into high value products, an India-Africa Centre for Medium Range Weather Forecasting to harness satellite technology for the agriculture and fisheries sectors as well as to contribute towards disaster preparedness and management of natural resources and an India-Africa Institute of Agriculture and Rural Development. India will work with Regional Economic Communities to establish at the regional level, Soil, Water & Tissue Testing Laboratories, Regional Farm Science Centres, Seed Production-cum-Demonstration Centres, and Material Testing Laboratories for Highways. The Forum Summit 2011 has focused on the Africa’s self-reliant development in agriculture sector and initiates an alternative to African countries either to go for the SAP or build indigenous techniques in the partnership with India and achieve the real reliant development and get rid of any sort of colonial past.