She opined that investing in agriculture and food systems has the potential to produce a multiplier effect for complementary sectors, as well as service or manufacturing industries.
According to Min. Brunson, such investment could adequately take into account not only the women, but also the youth and indigenous people because they constitute a larger percentage of the population of the country.
She made the statement on behalf of Minister Samuel D. Tweah at the High-Level Awareness Raising and Launch of the Project Enhancing the Enabling Environment for Responsible Investment in Agriculture and Food Systems in Liberia at a local hotel in Monrovia recently.
“While the agriculture sector represents a relatively low percentage of the total investments in the country, there is an urgent need for enhancement of investment in agriculture in order to achieve the sustainability goal and end poverty and hunger,” Min. Brunson asserted.
She indicated that the government has developed several policies for agriculture, food security and nutrition, noting that these policies and programs have been unsustainable due to low capacities, noting that “food security exists when all people, at all times, have physical, economic and social access to sufficient and nutritious food to meet their dietary needs.”
“With assistance from the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and other partners, the government has developed policies for an effective and sustainable agriculture sector in line with our development agenda (PAPD) to address the availability, access, stability and utilization of food security which require a significant increase in responsible investment,” the deputy minister pointed out.
She also said the FAO serves as a lead for agriculture and natural resources as well as food security under Pillar Two of the Sustainable Economic Transformation (SET) of the United Nation Sustainable Development Framework which is a key partner in private sector development, sustainable livelihoods, energy and infrastructure.
Min. Brunson said in investing in agriculture and food systems, it was particularly important that their capacity to invest be strengthened and secured in the sector.
She noted that empirical research has shown that the rise of investment in agriculture globally and in Africa is driven by favourable market opportunities, providing means for good environment, improved quality of public policies and general quality of good governance as well as improved land tenure governance.
She thanked the FAO on behalf of the President. George M. Weah and the government of Liberia, especially the German government for supporting the efforts to enhance the enabling environment through a pilot project on food security in the country.