AU recommends creation of seed industry

Sirte- Libya (PANA) -- The African Union summit has recommended the tapping of the continent's human and material resources to develop a seed industry that would ensure sustainable agricultural development and food security.
The summit, which ended Tuesday in Sirte, said Africa was capable of creating its own seed industry due its vast potential and weather diversity.
African governments alone, however, could not meet the challenges of providing all the means required to support the planned "strategic industry," it noted.
He urged the creation of genetic and plant resource banks to identify and preserve local vegetable species that can be utilised to produce select seeds.
The AU appealed to the member states to take the challenges imposed by the conditions and situations of agricultural development and food production in Africa to realise the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).
The current monopoly of the seed industry and its ramifications are a serious block to the quest for sustainable development and food security in Africa, the summit noted.
According to figures, revenues from the seed market hit the US$15 billion mark in the last decade.
The US holds 40 percent of the market, while the European Union has 33 percent.

05 july 2005 21:09:00

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