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The Political Economy of Hunger: Volume 3: Endemic Hunger$
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Jean Drèze and Amartya Sen

Print publication date: 1991

Print ISBN-13: 9780198286370

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2008

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198286370.001.0001

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Policy Options for African Agriculture *

Policy Options for African Agriculture *

(p.197) 6 Policy Options for African Agriculture*
The Political Economy of Hunger: Volume 3: Endemic Hunger

Francis Idachaba

Oxford University Press

This chapter examines the stagnation and decline of sub-Saharan Africa's agriculture. It identifies four genres of constraints: rural infrastructure, research and technology, harmful pricing policies, and institutional arrangements. It criticizes the persistent ambiguity regarding the role of the government in African agriculture, and argues that in many instances donor agencies have only succeeded in making bad situations worse. The chapter emphasizes the needs of rural households as producers-consumers as well as the need for a proper sequencing of policy interventions. To transform Africa's agriculture, a wide range of policy options are presented which focus on the need to promote the food entitlement of the rural population. It is argued that to understand the policy alternatives, a demand-side approach rather than the traditional supply-side approach is required.

Keywords:   rural infrastructure, research and technology, pricing policies, institutional arrangements, parastatal syndrome, policy options

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