Supporting Responsible Investments in Agriculture and Food Systems (RAI)

International Conference on Responsible Agricultural Investment to Achieve the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030


A two-day conference started today in Tunisia on Responsible Agricultural Investment on the road to achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) by 2030. Convened by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO), the conference aims to raise awareness and exchange experiences on challenges and good practices related to responsible investment in agriculture and food systems.
The Conference brings together government representatives and policy makers from Guinea, Mali, Morocco, Mauritania, Senegal and Tunisia, in addition to researchers, representatives of financial institutions, rural youth and civil society organizations. It is held in collaboration with the Tunisian Agency for Investment Promotion in Agriculture (APIA) of the Tunisian Ministry of Agriculture, Hydraulic Resources and Fisheries, and is funded by the German Ministry of Nutrition and Agriculture.

FAO estimates that achieving the first two SDGs - eradication of poverty and hunger - requires a steady investment of USD 140 billion per year in agriculture and rural development, and that 85% of these investments should target the African continent. However, these investments should be responsible, sustainable, and bring benefits to local communities, farmers and investors while respecting the environment.

In his opening remarks, Mr. Philippe Ankers, FAO sub-regional Coordinator for North Africa and Representative to Tunisia stressed that: “FAO believes that responsible agricultural investment is key to achieving sustainability and providing rural communities with a higher income and better life.” He added that, “FAO is always keen to support its member states to adhere to the Principles for Responsible Investment in Agriculture and Food System (CFS-RAI), the most comprehensive international guidance instrument for agricultural investments.”

Mr. Boubacar Al-Karay, Chief of Staff at the Ministry of Agriculture, Water Resources and Fisheries, expressed his appreciation to FAO’s initiative in holding this conference in Tunisia, calling for the establishment of a “regional network, specialized in Responsible Agricultural Investment,” noting that, “Tunisia is predisposed to lead it.”

As for Mr. Abderrahmane Chaffaï, the Director General of APIA, he confirmed that his agency, “is open to any proposal for collaboration and cooperation,” and that it looking forward to “enrich any rational discussion for increasing responsible investments in agriculture.”

In this context, special attention is given to creating an enabling environment – institutional, regulatory and incentive frameworks – at the country level, as this is the main determinant of the quality and quantity of investments.

Since the agricultural sector is the main source of youth employment in Africa, this conference is looking at ways to build the capacities of young people to become agro-entrepreneurs capable of investing in their farms and businesses. This priority is recognized in the Malabo Declaration of 2014, and is one of the main priorities for FAO, which has been empowering youth to carry out and benefit from responsible agricultural investment through capacity development programmes.

More information:

FAO Umbrella Programme Supporting Responsible Investments in Agriculture and Food Systems

Principles for Responsible Investment in Agriculture and Food System (CFS-RAI)

Contact: [email protected]