To support the growth and competitiveness of agri-tech in Senegal, the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the International Trade Centre officially launched the NTF V project on 13 October in Dakar.
As Senegal’s population grows and urbanizes, food self-sufficiency has become a major challenge. Designing new agricultural practices can ensure that family farms make a living from their work while adapting to climate change.
The Netherlands Trust Fund (NTF) V programme supports innovative digital solutions to promote agriculture and agribusiness in foreign markets. The support will focus on cashews through July 2025, specifically on how processing cashew nuts can generate new jobs, economic growth and social inclusion.
“Digital tools can be of great help to optimize irrigation, avoid waste of water, prevent diseases, forecast yields, evaluate the quality of production, but above all, bring supply and demand closer together,” said Macoumba Diouf, head of the Horticulture Department of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Infrastructure.
“NTF V facilitates our access to digital innovations in all these areas. And the success we will have in developing the cashew industry should inspire us to create a model that can be adapted to other markets, such as mango and watermelon,” he added.
Digital tools can be of great help to optimize irrigation, avoid waste of water, prevent diseases, forecast yields, evaluate the quality of production
Promoting quality, competitive Senegalese goods abroad
The NTF V Senegal project's support also includes training activities and participation in regional and international events.
Tidiane Sarr, first vice president of the Senegalese Organization of Information and Communication Technology Professionals (OPTIC), is enthusiastic about this opportunity for Senegal's agri-tech start-ups.
“On the export side, the NTF V project can organize top-level business meetings and offers the opportunity to participate in emblematic trade fairs such as the International Trade Fair for Digital Economy Professionals (SIPEN),” Sarr said.
“Business lead missions abroad are likely to lead to the establishment of key partnerships for the Senegalese agritech sector. Coaching and training activities help our companies to learn about and comply with international trade standards and procedures.”
In a nutshell, NTF V’s goal is to create a climate of cooperation and exchange with public and private stakeholders in Senegalese tech.
“OPTIC is the contact point of the Senegalese public authorities for most of the initiatives in the IT sector,” Sarr said.
“We want to show that our member companies are able to respond to public tenders. For this, we need to develop an appropriate response framework. NTF V also provides us with its expertise in this area.”
Distributed by APO Group on behalf of International Trade Centre.