Ethiopia

Synopsis of the conference on accelerating agricultural development, economic growth and poverty reduction in Ethiopia

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Session I: Enhancing Agricultural Productivity

Presentation: Trends and Determinants of Ag Productivity: Alemayehu Seyoum Taffesse & Alejandro Nin-Pratt (IFPRI)

FINDINGS:

- Sample means from the CSA Agric Sample Survey (AgSS) data show:
- Only about half of farmers use fertilizer (teff, wheat and maize)
- Farmers using both seed and fertilizer have moderately higher yields (this does not correct for agro-ecology, other inputs and many other factors)
- Controlling for agro-ecology, use of improved seed, credit use and other factors, regression analysis of CSA national data indicates:
- Average and marginal productivities are positive but relatively low
- Using the regression coefficients, recent growth in teff and maize yields is not explained by fertilizer increase or other factors included in the regressions
- Ethiopian Rural Household Survey (ERHS) yield trends (rainfall sufficient highland cereal-based agro-ecological zone) show:
- Wheat: yield levels and (positive) trend are similar to AgSS data for this ecology
- Maize and teff: much lower yields and opposite trend as compared to AgSS data for this ecology

Presentation: Public Expenditures on Agriculture: Alemayehu Geda (Addis Ababa University)

FINDINGS:

- The top priority: Capacity Strengthening in Ministry of Agriculture in order to better:
- Assess returns on proposed projects and
- Link micro-level planning to the macro-economic and sectoral planning

Session 2: Rural Service Delivery and Weather Insurance

Presentation: Agricultural Extension and Rural Water Supply: Tewodaj Moges (IFPRI), Zelekawork Paulos (IFPRI-ESSP II), Regina Birner (IFPRI), Fanaye Tadesse (EEA) & Mamusha Lemma (EEA)

FINDINGS:

- Detailed household, key informant and group interviews in eight sites across Ethiopoia indicate:
- Access to safe drinking water sources is very low
- 32% of study households in 2009-which is substantially higher than nation-wide rural access of 11% in 2004 (World Development Indicators, 2008)
- Water committees, the lowest level service providers
- Are still insufficiently inclusive
- Are not able to counter-act top-down facility provision.
- Have high discretion in setting rules, fees, etc., but are unable to effectively use this discretion due to nearly no training on "soft skills" (community relations)
- Agricultural extension strategies are needed to better target female farmers, including linking extension with women's groups and increasing female staff among extension agents

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