Strategies and Priorities for African Agriculture

Economywide Perspectives from Country Studies

Xinshen Diao, ed., James Thurlow, ed., Samuel Benin, ed., Shenggen Fan, ed.

In the first decade of the twenty-first century, countries within Sub-Saharan Africa reached milestones that seemed impossible only ten years ago: macroeconomic stability, sustained economic growth, and improved governance. Continuing this pattern of success will require enhancing the region’s agricultural sector, in which a large proportion of poor people make a living.

The authors of Strategies and Priorities for African Agriculture: Economywide Perspectives from Country Studies argue that, although the diversity of the region makes generalization difficult, increasing staple-crop production is more likely to reduce poverty than increasing export-crop production. This conclusion is based on case studies of ten low-income African countries that reflect varying levels of resource endowments and development stages. The authors also recommend increased, more efficient public investment in agriculture and agricultural markets and propose new directions for future research.

The last ten years have been an encouraging time for one of the world’s poorest regions; this book offers an analysis of how recent, promising trends can be sustained into the future.

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