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China Agrees To Help Improve African Food Production -Kenya

Published Thursday, 12th August 2010 09:10 pm - © 2010 Dow Jones

NAIROBI -(Dow Jones)- China has agreed to transfer agricultural technology to Africa to enable the continent to boost production and thereby guarantee world food security, the Kenyan vice president press office said in a statement Thursday.

The Beijing declaration for the massive agricultural technology transfer came as the China-Africa Agricultural Forum, in which vice president Kalonzo Musyoka represented Kenya, drew to a close Thursday.

Reading the declaration, the Chinese deputy Prime Minister Hui Liangyu said global food security should be the number one priority of governments, given that acute food shortages were bound to lead to food crises and hence social and political instability.

"China is the largest developing economy able to feed 20% of the world's population on the proceeds of 9% of the planet's arable land. If we partner with Africa with a much higher percentage of arable land yet contains most of the developing countries we should be able to guarantee international food security," the statement quoted Hui as saying.

The declaration called for a leap in Africa's agricultural output by transforming its rural agriculture through an infusion of Chinese agricultural characteristics, the statement said.

This will involve educating rural farmers, setting up modern farming demonstration centers, using better quality seeds, and new technology in appropriate farming machinery as well as soil improvement techniques, said the statement.

-By George Mwangi, contributing to Dow Jones Newswires; +254 735 781853;

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