Many developing and developed countries are experiencing stagnant and even declining investment in public agricultural research. Expenditure is increasing in only a few of the larger and often more advanced developing countries. Brazil ranks third in the developing world in terms of public agricultural R&D investments after China and India. After a period of stable or declining expenditure levels, total public agricultural R&D spending has increased substantially in recent years due to renewed commitment to agricultural R&D on the part of the Brazilian government. Embrapa’s 2009 spending, for example, was 28 percent higher than its 2008 spending (adjusted for inflation), its highest level, since inauguration. Historically, Embrapa has been better funded than Brazil’s state government agencies, but the state centers are expected to benefit from increased federal support intended to revitalize Brazil’s agricultural research system and improve performance at the state level.
Embrapa has undergone restructuring to ensure that the country’s agricultural sector remains competitive. Modifications include enhancing human and institutional capacities, improving institutional structures, and strengthening the performance and evaluation system. Embrapa is also increasing its international collaborations, particularly in North America, Western Europe, and a large number of developing countries in South and Central America and Africa.