January 27, 2012
By Sung Lee
Today, the World Economic Forum launched a new report, “Putting the New Vision for Agriculture into Action”, outlining the key steps required to achieve an ambitious, lasting transformation in agriculture. The report sets goals of 20 percent improvement per decade on each of its three goals: economic growth and opportunity, food security and nutrition, and environmental sustainability. The report puts forward specific recommendations to achieve this goal.
1) Leadership and Stakeholder Alignment
- The transformation must be led by senior policy shapers with active participation by the private sector and civil society at a senior executive level.
- Leadership must stay in continuous dialogue and coordinate throughout the process
2) A Clear Strategy and Priorities
- Leaders should set realistic, quantified and measureable objectives across the three goals: economic growth and opportunity, food security and nutrition, and environmental sustainability
- Prioritization should be based on comparative advantage of key value chains and geographic basins and demand from destination markets.
3) A Concrete Investment and Entrepreneurship Pipeline
- Leaders should define “bankable” investment opportunities across the chain.
- Leaders should engage the right groups and organizations to participate in the discussion.
4) Enabling Hard and Soft Infrastructure Policies and Investment
- Strong infrastructure system is a critical component of agriculture transformation
- Leaders should seek to find an effective model to catalyze development of hard and soft infrastructure (physical and informational infrastructure)
5) Catalytic Financing and Risk Management Solutions
- Leaders should build a package of instruments – grants, guarantees, patient capital and commercial money combined – to finance the capital costs of transformation
6) Robust Mechanisms and Institutions for Delivery, Implementation and Durability
- Leaders should dedicate sufficient resources to drive operational development and deployment of initiatives until they achieve a self-sustaining momentum.
- All stakeholders should agree on transparently monitoring and regular reporting of progress to the head of government.