Technical Promotion and Poverty Reduction: A Review of China’s Efforts in Africa

Review Article

Ann Agric Crop Sci. 2016; 1(2): 1010.

Technical Promotion and Poverty Reduction: A Review of China’s Efforts in Africa

Zhang Y¹, Zheng Y¹, Liu Z^²*, Li QR³ and Jingyi Z4

¹United Nations Development Program, China

²School of Business, Nanjing Normal University, China

³Leibniz-Centre for Agricultural Landscape Research (ZALF), Germany

4Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies, USA

*Corresponding author: Liu Z, School of Business, Nanjing Normal University, China

Received: October 06, 2016; Accepted: November 22, 2016; Published: November 24, 2016

Abstract

This study is an overview of the effectiveness and challenges of China’s Agricultural Technology Demonstration Centre (ATDC) in Africa. The Chinese government aims to enhance Africa’s self-reliance capacity through ATDC. It is an aid approach with typical Chinese characteristics combining aid and commercial activities. The paper analyses the structure and function of ATDC, followed by a case study in Tanzania to highlight the efficiency, effectiveness and challenges in the current scheme. To identify institutional prescriptions, we performed a comparative analysis between ATDC and the technical support provided by Japan, the United States and Republic of Korea to Africa. The results show that it is necessary for international development assistance to emphasize African countries’ national agricultural strategy or regional development plan. It is crucial to balance and coordinate technological promotion efforts, poverty reduction efforts that target agricultural and rural development as well as infrastructure assistance in African countries. Trilateral cooperation and community pilot projects with local experts, private investments and international partners can facilitate technical demonstration and poverty alleviation. In particular, a sound monitoring and evaluation system should be developed to evaluate the effectiveness of and stimulate the progress of the technological promotion and poverty reduction in Africa.

Keywords: Rural poverty; Agricultural development; Economic transformation; Poverty Reduction; Resilience; China-Africa

Poverty and Agriculture Development in Africa

Overview of poverty

According to the 2014 Human Development Report, around 72% Africans (558 million) still live under international poverty line and lack basic services, such as education and medical treatment. The report also indicated that although significant progress has been made in Sub-Saharan Africa, it is still one of the world’s most underdeveloped regions.

In the past decades, poverty rate of Africa has been on the decline. The proportion of people living on less than $1.25 a day in Southern, East, Central and West Africa decreased from 56.5 percent in 1990 to 48.5 percent in 2010. In the same period, the population in Africa increased by 65.08% from 0.63 billion to 1.04 billion [1]. Despite the drop in poverty rate, the total number of African people (excluding North Africa) living below the poverty line ($1.25 per day) increased from 290 million in 1990 to 376 million (1999) and 414 million (2010) Figure 1.