Syndicate content

Add new comment

Submitted by Thomas Sommerhalter on
Dear Mr Derajavan Situation is quite diversified in Africa. I will only talk about the Sahel region which I know best. In the Sahel we had the last 40 years a number of phenomenon explaining low productivity: Productivity was going down due to: - Lower rainfall than the period before; - Very little investments because it was cheaper, easier and technically simpler to crop new land and there was little capital available anyway; - Increased cropping of less fertile land; - Land degradation; - Not enough land for too many farmers (in Niger evidence shows that in densely populated rural areas –for galloping demographie of 3+% - 2/3 of rural families have less than 2ha of land for rainfed agriculture which is extremely little who are thus poor and and can does not invest. - Lack of alternative income generation options keeps people in non productive agricultural micro-enterprises creating a de-investment cycle - There are limited options to increase production in drylands but even these have only been disseminated and taken up in a very limited scale (after the end of the world bank “train and visit programs” there are practically no more extension systems existing these days) No there are people promoting large scale agricultural expansion in the Savanna areas. This is possible, with lots of fertilizer and other investment but will lead to heavy deforestation. This in term will even more jeopardize climate patters in the Sahel… not to speak about the effects of globally changing climate. Overall subsidizes played a very little role as there have not been many in the Sahel. Thomas Sommerhalter