The group discussed the important role of agriculture in helping to reach development goals in Ethiopia, with the visiting researchers highlighting the vital place for technical expertise and strong research partnerships that benefit all parties. The Ethiopian researchers placed a keen focus on livestock production but also emphasised the need to support research efforts in associated areas such as pastoralism, invasive species control, bio-security, agoforestry and mixed cropping systems to ensure positive outcomes for smallholder farmers and the nation as a whole.
The RPM's discussed a number of projects that are currently having a positive impact in Africa. One project in particular, aimed at controlling Newcastle disease in village chickens, is having a significant impact on cropping practices and improved child nutritional health.
ACIAR's interim CEO, Mr David Shearer, reinforced the Agency's commitment to agricultural research in Eastern and Southern Africa, commenting on the success of current and past projects in the region where Ethiopia has taken an active lead on a regional level. General Manager of Country Programs, Dr Peter Horne, reinforced ACIAR's long-term investment (15% of ACIAR project budget) in the region and briefly outlined the strategic thinking behind ACIAR’s work across 13 countries in Africa.
|ACIAr's Acting CEO, Mr David Shearer, with the Ethiopian Minister for Livestock and Fisheries, Dr Gebregziabher Gebre Yohannes. Photo: ACIAR|