Tunisia - The African Development Bank Group, plans to commit $10 billion over the next five years to boost Africa's efforts to end hunger and become a primary food provider for itself and the rest of the world, Bank Group President, Dr Akinwumi Adesina, announced on Wednesday.

Adesina was quoted by an AfDB statement as calling on more than 34 heads of state, 70 government ministers, the private sector, farmers, development partners, and corporate executives taking part at the Dakar 2 Africa Food Summit in Diamniadio, east of the Senegalese capital of Dakar. to work out compacts that would deliver food and agriculture transformation at scale across Africa. He encouraged them to take collective action to unlock the continent's agricultural potential to become a global breadbasket.

A Tunisian delegation headed by the Minister of Agriculture, Water Resources and Fisheries, Mahmoud Elyes Hamza, is participating in this summit on the theme "Feeding Africa: Food Sovereignty and Resilience".

The president of AFDB also called for taking collective action to unlock the continent's agricultural potential to become a global breadbasket.

He said over 283 million Africans go to bed hungry every day, calling this «unacceptable» and urging the leaders to turn political will into decisive actions to deliver food security for Africa.

For his part, the President of Senegal, Macky Sall, who is also the current Chairperson of the African Union, emphasised the importance of increasing the land under cultivation and market access to cross-border trade.

The Dakar 2 summit—under the theme Feed Africa: food sovereignty and resilience—takes place amid supply chain disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, climate change, Russia's invasion of Ukraine. More than a thousand delegates and dignitaries attended, including the President of Ireland Michael D. Higgins.

The Chairperson of the African Union Commission Moussa Faki Mahamat said the Dakar summit was timely and would provide innovative solutions to help Africa become less dependent on food imports.

He urged development partners to work together within existing structures, such as Agenda 2063 and the African Continental Free Trade Area, for sustainable transformation.

In his message to the summit, United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres acknowledged that Africa was currently facing the challenges of climate change and food insecurity, as the Russia-Ukraine war had caused the price of fertilizers to shoot up and made their supply difficult.

He pledged the UN's support to help Africa become a global food powerhouse.

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