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BRIDGING GAPS BETWEEN AGRI VALUE CHAINS IN AFRICA THROUGH ICT

The Agribusiness sector in Africa, is a sector with many opportunities for the global community. One being that of Geodata and technology.

ICT applications help farmers around the world with precision farming. They receive weather information and advice on which seeds or fertilizers to use and when to irrigate their plots. That leads to increased yields and improved quality. This information has not yet been made available to financial institutions at a large scale but it has an enormous potential to increase access to finance for smallholder farmers.

Despite this, much of the potential that ICTs hold for agricultural development remains unrealised, either because apps and information do not exist, or have not been sufficiently refined for intended users, or because potential users do not know about the technology or how to use it.

Important Factors That Should Not Be Overlooked When Improving Agricultural Efficiency Through ICT :

  • Technology itself is not sufficient, a well trained team is also required: Case studies show that investing solely in technology will not ensure successful implementation of ICT applications; it is necessary to invest in a team that can effectively perform M&E tasks, as well as to invest in capacity development of the end users who can ensure the sustainability of the project.

  • Complex ICT or complex platforms are not necessarily essential: Technologies already being used by farmers should be taken into consideration. For example, USAid's Feed the Future project employs a combination of traditional instruments to collect basic data in the field, which is then recorded in Excel sheets and subsequently shared free of cost with potential buyers in real-time through Drop Box.

  • Contextual factors: Local factors such as the lack of adequate resources must be taken into account beforehand (e.g electricity, gender issues, limited network coverage and low bandwidth, local languages). Implementation approaches need to identify the specific needs of the intended users by working in collaboration with them. There is not one single solution that fits all projects: context, policies, marketing efforts and incentives are all essential factors to ensure participation from community members.

  • Data integrity and security: must be ensured throughout the project and when using ICT applications. Experts agreed that leveraging location data and other metadata with individual records helps maintain integrity.

There are remarkable examples of various development agencies currently using ICT for data collection and M&E in the agricultural sector worldwide.

This and more will be explored at our upcoming

"Value Chain Finance Edition  (VCF2018) of The Agrique Africa Investment Summit, taking place 18 to 19th September 2018  in Utrecht, The Netherlands"

One of the speakers at the upcoming VCF2018 include:

 

               

 

 

Josien Sluijs

Director - Netherlands Platform for Inclusive Finance

Josien Sluijs has been active in the field of inclusive finance for over 15 years. In her current position as Director of the Netherlands Platform for Inclusive Finance (NpM), she is responsible for the representation of the Dutch Inclusive Finance sector and she facilitates cooperation, knowledge development and sharing amongst the members of NpM. Before her current position, she held a senior position at Rabo Development.

She is among the speakers at the Value Chain Financing Edition 2018, 18th to 19th September, 2018 in Utrecht, Netherlands.

To find out more about how Geodata can be used to support Value Chain Finance for the development of Africa's Agribusiness Sector,

Kindly register for the

"The Value Chain Finance Edition of The Agrique Africa Investment Summit, taking place 18 to 19th September 2018, Utrecht.

To participate/register or further enquiries, go to www.agriqueafrica.com

Also see: http://farmcafeng.com/business-post.php?id=194 for more details

#VCF2018 

 

 

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