Addressing Africa’s deteriorating food security should be Africa’s top priority—World Bank

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‘A key priority for Africa over the next decade should be to address a deteriorating food security situation that is compounded by the effects of climate change, declining agricultural productivity, and rapid population and urbanization growth.

Despite several commitments, ‘progress has been modest with only 9 out of 55 African countries currently on track to reduce under-nutrition to 5 percent or less by 2025. . . .

Going forward, policy priorities centered around leveraging science and digital technology and addressing fragility hold the greatest promise.

‘Climate change is already affecting agricultural production in Africa, and future projections suggest even worse outcomes. The frequency of droughts has dramatically increased, from an average of once every 12.5 years over 1982–2006 to once every 2.5 years over 2007–2016. These droughts have also become more severe and prolonged, diminishing the productive capacity of the land. Farmers face other climate risks, including lower and erratic rainfall, shorter rainy seasons, and a higher incidence of pests and diseases.

By some estimates, Africa could face a near double-digit reduction in crop yields and production volumes over the next decade, as well as rising food prices by similar margins.

The impacts of these and other indicators are projected to be even larger by 2080. . . .

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