In the next 30-40 years the demand for animal source foods will grow rapidly in the African continent due to growth in human population, increasing consumer purchasing power and urbanisation. These rapid transitions will have major implications for African agriculture, which will be challenged to supply affordably-priced, nutritious and safe food to an increasingly affluent and urbanised population. To address this in Uganda, the Uganda Agribusiness Alliance, Grow Africa and the Uganda Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries, held a two- day Investment Facilitation Conference for the Uganda Animal Industry.
The investment facilitation conference brought together value chain actors with a particular focus on poultry, beef, dairy, piggery and fisheries subsectors (from breeding to production to processing to the market).
“Private sector investment lies at the heart of the agriculture development agenda in Uganda”, the State Minister for Animal Resources, Hon. Joy Kabatsi stated, affirming her Government’s commitment towards creating an enabling environment for investment in the animal industry. She cited various ongoing government infrastructure development programmes and reiterat- ed importance of better planning and streamlining of interventions between public and private sector to ensure investments are made where they are needed most.
The Animal Industry plays a very important role in the socio- economic transformation and development of Uganda. The investment facilitation conference set the agenda for encouraging the private sector to invest and be a more effective part of the solution as Uganda delivers on its strategic direction for the animal industry, national development policy frameworks and strategies including Uganda Vision 2040, National Development Plan (NDP) II and the Agriculture Sector Strategic Plan (ASSP) 2015/16 – 2019/20.
As co-organisers of the investment facilitation conference, Grow Africa presented its Country Agribusiness Partnership Framework (CAP-F), a catalytic tool to support to countries in developing multi- stakeholder partnership initiatives aligned to national development. The CAP-F framework seeks to involve the private sector in business cases development and clearly lay out the opportunities for potential commercial benefit for the investors.
Speaking on behalf of Grow Africa, Mr William Asiko emphasised the need for private sector to play a key role in agriculture development in Uganda. “CAP-F addresses how to get private sector, governments and other stakeholders to have a discussion that is effective and sustainable, and to enter into agreements where they can hold each other mutually accountable to their obligations”, he added.
Based on a shared vision and objectives, the meeting was designed as a tool to enhance dialogue and consultation among agricultural actors in order to propose common solutions for sustainable agriculture strategies in the country. This should foster a better governance of the sector and offer an innovative forum to exchange experiences, information and knowledge about agriculture development. Government shared its strategic vision for the sector, while private sector outlined investment prospects and specific areas of intervention required by government to facilitate their investments.
The event concluded with partners pointing out that the future of African livestock will influence the development of the entire continent and as next steps, it was agreed that in the context of Uganda, the vision was to be number 1 in production of Animal feed and animal products. In this regard, 6 value chain specific working groups were formed for the beef, dairy, poultry, piggery, aquaculture and apiary value chains to brainstorm on specific interventions that should be undertaken in each value chain to achieve this vision. The working groups will further consult industry stakeholders to develop specific objectives, targets, timelines, expected results, and performance indicators. The working groups will serve as foundation blocks for the implementation of the country agribusiness partnership framework.