Marketlinks Event

Markets in Fragile Contexts: Lessons from the Seed Market System in Eastern DRC

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Photo: hands, seed
Photo by Fintrac Inc.

Marketlinks, Agrilinks, and the Feed the Future Enabling Environment for Food Security (EEFS) project hosted a joint webinar on Thursday, February 6, 2020, examining the enabling environment for agricultural market systems in fragile contexts.

Drawing on EEFS’ recent study of seed markets in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), speakers discussed findings, recommendations, and a phased road map for how the public sector and donors can facilitate private investment in eastern DRC’s seed market system.

As USAID programming orients toward the Journey to Self-Reliance, interventions in the agriculture sector must support an enabling environment for private sector investment. A healthy enabling environment in which clear rules and sound institutions facilitate private sector actors’ involvement is the bedrock of an inclusive, self-sustaining agricultural market system.

Fragile country contexts, however, present unique challenges to this effort. Endemic social and political unrest combined with foundational issues, such as limited formality and an overreliance on emergency distribution, create a high-risk climate that deters investment in agricultural markets, stifling access to quality inputs and weakening long-term food security.

To learn more about the context-specific challenges encountered through seed systems in eastern DRC, watch the webinar recording.