AGRA and Grow Asia have signed a collaboration agreement to accelerate food system transformation in Africa and Asia. Grounded in the spirit of South-South Cooperation between the leading agri-food platforms in Africa and Asia respectfully, the agreement will pave the way for the co-development of knowledge exchange and training programs, joint case studies, and research, and, where appropriate, the pooling and sharing of tools and resources.
South-South cooperation is characterised by technical collaboration by developing countries in the Global South. It is a tool most typically deployed by international organisations, civil society, and the private sector to share knowledge and skills in specific areas such as agricultural development and climate change mitigation.
This collaboration agreement between AGRA and Grow Asia was announced during the Grow Asia Forum in Singapore on Tuesday 18 October, Grow Asia’s annual summit co-hosted with the World Economic Forum.
“Grow Asia provided us with the opportunity to bring our continents [Africa and Asia] together to take advantage of the best they each have to offer. This is the perfect time to strengthen South-South Cooperation and to learn from each other. We are going to demonstrate that international cooperation continues to be an important pillar to help us feed more people and take better care of our planet. This meeting serves as the launch pad for a series of commitments between our two institutions and countries across continents in the south,” said Dr. Agnes Kalibata, President of AGRA.
“South-South Cooperation is at the heart of how Grow Asia operates, bringing together over 600 partners across Southeast Asia to co-develop, pilot, and scale solutions to some of the region’s most pressing food system challenges,” says Beverley Postma, Executive Director of Grow Asia. “Food systems in Africa and Asia share many similarities and challenges. We know that intra-regional cooperation serves as an important enabler of economic development, resulting in increased trade, technology transfer, foreign direct investment and, critically, trust. We welcome AGRA’s partnership and look forward to the many synergies this agreement will bring.”
Established in 2006, AGRA is an African-led and Africa-based institution that puts smallholder farmers at the centre of the continent’s growing economy by transforming agriculture from a solitary struggle to survive into farming as a business that thrives. Together with our partners, we are working to sustainably grow Africa’s food systems.
AGRA strengthens seed systems, develops and promotes sustainable farming practices, helps unlock trade and markets, and supports governments who lead their countries’ development. We work with farmers to adapt to climate change, increase soil health, and protect the environment. AGRA believes deeply in the urgency of reducing the inequality that women face in agriculture, and to unlocking the power and innovation of youth. More information at https://agra.org/.
About Grow Asia
Grow Asia is a multi-stakeholder platform established in 2015 by the World Economic Forum and the ASEAN Secretariat to cultivate more inclusive, resilient and sustainable food systems in Southeast Asia. Grow Asia does this by brokering commercial and non-profit partnerships between the global and regional public, private, civil society, academic and farmer organisations that make up the Grow Asia Network, creating an ecosystem that supports knowledge sharing, collaboration, innovation and policy change.
Grow Asia comprises the regional Grow Asia Secretariat in Singapore; 6 Country Partnerships; and 44 Working Groups, organised around specific cross-cutting issues (e.g., agritech) or value chains (e.g., corn). Today, Grow Asia engages over 600 partner organisations through its Country Partnerships in Cambodia, Indonesia, Myanmar, Papua New Guinea, the Philippines and Viet Nam, reaching close to 2.5 million smallholder farmers.
In 2020, Grow Asia was accredited as an Entity Associated with ASEAN due to the important role Grow Asia plays in the region, particularly in facilitating multi-stakeholder partnerships for sustainable agriculture development. Learn more at www.growasia.org.