KAMPALA – The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), in partnership with the Government of Uganda, the African Union Commission (AUC), and members of the private sector have discussed the context and opportunities to improve the design, implementation and impact of Public-Private Partnerships (agri-PPPs) in Uganda’s agricultural sector.
This follows the work by FAO and AUC to improve understanding about the design, implementation, and impact of agri-PPPs, which involved an analysis of 24 agri-PPP case studies from eight African countries and informed the development of guidelines.
FAO says the guidelines will support AU member countries in designing and implementing effective, sustainable and inclusive agri-PPPs, as part of CAADP implementation, with consideration given to enabling an environment for agricultural investment and agribusiness development.
Some of the countries include Ethiopia, Rwanda, Uganda, Kenya, Ghana, Cote d’Ivoire, Zambia, and South Africa.
Speaking at the event, Country Representative, Antonio Querido, highlighted the important role of dialogue in sharing experiences and gathering the views and insights of a broad range of public and private stakeholders on the key elements essential for the successful design, implementation, and impact of public-private partnerships for a sustainable transformation of the agricultural sector.
He said Public; Private Partnership (PPP) initiatives have the potential to help transform the production-oriented agricultural sector towards a more market-oriented, modernized agri-food sector.
“The guideline will help trigger finance from the private sector to finance country’s agricultural investment plans,” Querido said during an Agribusiness Leaders’ Breakfast Meeting held at Serena Hotel on Tuesday 29.
“The initiative is capable of availing improved farmer-market linkages and employment creation in rural areas and cities,” he added.
Querido said that the PPP will also create a better understanding between the government and the private sector as they aspire to partner in a number of development projects.
He said that governments need to work with the private sector now more than ever to make agriculture more profitable for all players involved.
Mr. Queriod said FAO is a strong proponent of PPP arrangements.
Public-Private Partnerships are long-term contractual arrangements between the government and a private sector firm with the private company remaining responsible for significant aspects of the deal.
Mr. Mark Kofi Fynn, the CAADP Advisor Agribusiness, speaking on behalf of the African Union Commission, stated that the 2014 Malabo Declaration on Accelerated Agricultural Growth and Transformation for Shared Prosperity and Improved Livelihoods calls for increased investment finance, from both the public and private sectors, in agriculture.
“To bring about the increased levels of investment, and the associated transformation in agriculture, it is important to define clear roles for the public and private sectors. The public sector should undertake key reforms and catalytic investments that create a conducive environment for business. The private sector in African agriculture, on its part, should be better organized, engage in the policy-making processes and invest in priority value chains to take advantage of opportunities”, said Mr. Fynn
Lt Gen Charles Angina, the deputy chief coordinator of Operation Wealth Creation (OWC), the agri-PPPs initiative has come as a big relief to the sector.
“This is going to be a big mileage,” he said, adding that OWC is working to address the mindset of the poor communities.