Policies and strategies
The government of Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia that has been established in 1991 has undertaken a far reaching program of economic reforms by designing various policies and strategies which accelerate growth.
Agriculture Development led Industrialization (ADLI) that aimed at transforming the country's economy is one of these national policies and strategies. It is aimed at transforming the country's in to a well developed and prospered one. Since the start of the implementation of this timely and effective agricultural policy and strategy, the agricultural sector is influencing the over all economic performance in Ethiopia. In this sector 8 per cent average growth of productivity has been registered for the last 7 consecutive years. About 11.7 million small holder houses hold account for approximately 95 per cent of Agricultural GDP and 85 per cent of employment opportunity. The necessity to transform this huge sector is unquestionable. That is why, our government has demonstrated strong commitment to agriculture and rural development through allocating more than 10 per cent of the county's total budget.
There have been achievements so far obtained by implementing the agriculture development led industrialization policy and strategies. Only to mention some of these:-
The number of farmers who used agricultural extension packages has reached more than 8 million as compared to 35,000 farmers few years ago
Strong research-extension-farmer linkage is already established to improve technology generation, transfer illustration and feedback. To implement these 25 agricultural vocational training colleges (ATVT's) have already been established all over the country to train the necessary man power. From these ATVT's colleges, 71,000 agricultural development agents are graduated in animal science, plant science and natural resource since 2004/2005. These graduates have been supporting our farmers in the agricultural extension services and contributing a lot for the agricultural productivity.
8,780 farmers training centers (FTCs) have been built and many farmers are getting trained in various agricultural practices, extension services and on how to adapt new agricultural technologies that enhances agricultural productivity.
The cumulative effect of all these endeavors is the growth in agricultural production and productivity that benefit the whole people. In this respect, during the last six years the country's agricultural sector has registered a rapid growth. In crop production, the total land covered by the main crops was 9.8 million hectare in 2004/05. By 2009/10 this coverage has increased to 11.25 million hectare.
With regard to agricultural productivity, it has reached to 200 million Quintals in 2009/10 as compared 103.5 million Quintals in 2004/05. The average productivity of the main crops has increased from 12.1 to 17 Quintals per hectare. The foreign currency required from both agricultural and industrial products in 2009 was $1.45 billon US dollar. From this the agricultural sector alone contributes 90 per cent of foreign exchange.
As the result of the development in agricultural productivity, with particular focus on market oriented produces, our farmers are gradually shifting from subsistence agriculture to commercialized one and through this effort they are able to improve their living standard. In line with this, some farmers have become millionaires and they are able to send their children to better and higher schools and some others have started their own private business in the nearby cities. These and other remarkable achievements are the results of our effective and timely policy and strategies of agricultural development. The sector has registered such results due to the government's responsible leadership, being developmental and democratic one.
Our Economy is showing a rapid transformation. As a result, the five years growth and development plan is launched and its practical implementation is already started at national level with the immediate aim of :-
Continuing rapid economic growth. Expanding access to and improving the quality of social services And transforming the development. In this respect, Agriculture is seen as the key deriving factor for economic development with particular attention given to scaling-up of best agricultural practices and new technologies at all levels in the same time to provide a foundation for the expansion of the industrial sector. This will be attained mainly by increasing the productivity of small holding farmers and enhancing the participation of investors in the sector. At the end of the growth and development (GTP) year, the agricultural productivity is expected to increase from 200 Million Quintals to 400 Million Quintals. This is realized by scaling up of best agricultural practices and new technologies at all levels in the same time.