Bhekani Zondo

Dr Moses Lubinga (Manager: Agro-food chains), Mr. Thulani Ningi (Economist: Agro-food chains), Mr. Bhekani Zondo (Agricultural Economist: Trade Research) and Mr. Bernard Manganyi (Economist: Smallholder Market Access), delegates from the National Agricultural Marketing Council (NAMC) flew out of the country to Kigali, in Rwanda, to attend the 2nd International Business Models in Agriculture (IBMA 2024) conference.

This pivotal event took place from 25 -29  March 2024 and the gathering served as a beacon of hope and it  aimed  to catalyse transformative change within the agricultural landscape of economies under the theme “Reshaping Agribusiness Models for Building Prosperous Rural Communities.

The IBMA 2024 program is a key platform for driving meaningful progress by fostering an environment conducive to open dialogue and the exchange of groundbreaking ideas.

The conference ushers in the necessary transformations needed to propel the agriculture sectors of developing economies forward through the principles of an open lab and disruptive business models. Furthermore, the platform serves as an opportunity for discussion about transitioning from poverty isolation to prosperity cohesion by bringing together diverse perspectives from around the globe.

The NAMC delegation presented the following papers at the conference: Understanding stakeholders’ interventions in controlling hazards within South African Food Systems, Multivariate analysis of the determinants of household participation in the cassava value-chain in South Africa and The long-term nexus between Foreign Direct Investment, Trade Dynamics and Economic Growth in South Africa: an ARDL-ECM Approach  during a session titled “Unlocking the potential of agricultural innovation in the export of high-value produce”.

It was during this session that they provided invaluable insights about leveraging on innovation to drive export growth and enhance the competitiveness of agricultural products from developing economies.

Dr Moses Lubinga was also featured in a panel discussion that focused on “Transforming Agricultural Business to Foster Prosperity in Rural Communities: Investigating Africa’s Path to Success”. The session explored Africa’s agricultural journey in depth, featuring compelling case studies that demonstrated how rural communities can undergo transformational change.

This conference provided a platform for knowledge exchange as well as the development of actionable strategies for driving sustainable agricultural development. In addition, it laid a groundwork for initiatives that could uplift rural communities, increase food security, and foster economic prosperity by leveraging on the collective expertise and passion of its participants.