FAO Regional Office for Africa

Africa’s food security in the spotlight

Regional Conference for Africa, 26-28 October 2020


African member countries of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) will come together for the first ever virtual session of the Regional Conference for Africa, from Monday 26 October.


The Government of Zimbabwe is hosting and chairing the biennial event.


The African member countries of FAO will join observer countries, development partners, civil society groups and the private sector over three days to chart the way out of the current worsening food security situation on the continent.


The 31st Session of the Regional Conference for Africa will also look at the impacts of COVID-19 on food security and nutrition, and ways to build more-resilient food systems.

Africa is significantly off track to achieve the Sustainable Development Goal of Zero Hunger by 2030, even without considering the impacts of COVID-19. Africa has the highest prevalence of undernourishment (more than twice the global average) compared to other regions and the second highest number of undernourished people. If recent trends persist, Africa will overtake Asia to become the region with the highest number of undernourished people by 2030.

Other highlights during the conference include a discussion on ways to sustainably transform Africa’s food systems, in which Agnes Kalibata, UN Special Envoy for the 2021 Food Systems Summit, will take part.


A publication by FAO and the African Union, “Regional Outlook of Gender and Agribusiness in Africa”, will be launched that contains policy recommendations and new data based on a review of 40 country gender assessments of agriculture and rural livelihoods.

The conference begins with a one-day Senior Officers Meeting on Monday 26 October. The two-day Ministerial Meeting begins on Tuesday 27 October with opening remarks by the FAO Director-General QU Dongyu and other important guests, from 9am GMT.

Media welcome

Journalists are invited to follow the proceedings live via webcast here. The webcast begins at 9am GMT on Monday 26 October.

All conference documents are available online here.

Media interviews ahead of and during the conference can be arranged by contacting [email protected].