News / Africa

G8 Warned of Pending Food Crisis

G8 Warned of Pending Food Crisis
G8 Warned of Pending Food Crisis

Multimedia

Audio
Joe DeCapua

G8 leaders are being called on to make stronger ties with Africa a top priority at their meeting in Deauville, France, especially regarding food security and poverty reduction. The International Food Policy Research Institute [IFPRI] warned of another food crisis unless action is taken.

“For the last decade or so, the partnership between Africa and the development agencies or the development partners, has been strengthened significantly. But I think there’s still room to improve. In particular, the G8 countries should really, really think seriously to meet the commitments they have made before,” said Shenggen Fan, IFPRI director general.

It could happen again

At the L’Aquila summit in Italy in 2009, G8 leaders pledged to take action to deal with the food crisis, which saw prices rise and supplies fall. The conditions triggered riots in a number of countries in 2007 and 2008.

Fan said, “When the G8 met in Italy, they committed $22 billion to support smallholder agriculture in developing countries, particularly Africa. Today, that commitment is still there [but] they have not met much of the commitment yet.”

He warned the world is poised to have another food crisis, unless the pledge is paid in full.

“I think it’s already coming. In the last 10 months, the wheat price has increased by a hundred percent. Maize price has also increased by 100%. In addition, prices for meat, dairy products have also increased,” he said.

Feeling the effects

When food prices increase many poor, not only just the consumers, but also even producers, suffer,” he said, and added, “If it happens again, we will probably lose the progress we have made in the last decade or so.”

He warned women and children are the most vulnerable to volatile prices and markets. Hunger and malnutrition, he said, can permanently damage a child’s brain development. “We need to fix this problem.”

He rejected the idea of spending cutbacks on agriculture because of the global recession.

“Agriculture is so critical in terms of hunger reduction, poverty reduction and also in terms of future growth. If we do not invest in agriculture…more people will suffer from hunger and poverty,” he said.

MDGs

The U.N. Millennium Development Goals are due to be achieved in 2015. The goals cover a wide range of issues, including poverty, hunger and health. Fan said the $22 billion in promised agricultural investment would help in reaching those goals.

“I think $22 billion is a good start, but it’s definitely not sufficient. More resources are required. And more importantly, these resources have to be spent more efficiently to achieve certain development goals by improving policies, governance, management and institutions,” he said.

IFPRI reported African countries have taken the initiative to improve their agricultural sector.

“They have made progress in the last decade or so. Many countries have increased their spending in agriculture. We have seen some successes in many parts of Africa. Agriculture growth is accelerating, but we need to continue to do that,” said Fan.

G8 leaders meet May 26 and 27.

You May Like

Ukraine Purges Interior Ministry Leadership With Pro-Russian Ties

Interior Minister Avakov says 91 people 'in positions of leadership' have been fired, including 8 generals found to have links to past pro-Moscow governments More

US Airlines Point to Additional Problems of any Ebola Travel Ban

Airline officials note that even under travel ban, they may not be able to determine where passenger set out from, as there are no direct flights from Liberia, Guinea or Sierra Leone More

Nigerian President to Seek Another Term

Goodluck Jonathan has faced intense criticism for failing to stop Boko Haram militants More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukrainei
X
Al Pessin
October 25, 2014 4:21 PM
Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukraine

Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.
Video

Video US ‘Death Cafes’ Put Focus on the Finale

In contemporary America, death usually is a topic to be avoided. But the growing “death café” movement encourages people to discuss their fears and desires about their final moments. VOA’s Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Ebola Orphanage Opens in Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone's first Ebola orphanage has opened in the Kailahun district. Hundreds of children orphaned since the beginning of the Ebola outbreak face stigma and rejection with nobody to care for them. Adam Bailes reports for VOA about a new interim care center that's aimed at helping the growing number of children affected by Ebola.

All About America

AppleAndroid