As of this week there are 8 billion people in the world, including 1.2 billion in Africa. How to feed them and what is the role of OCP and Morocco? High flying challenge!
According to the United Nations Population Division, in 1950 we were two billion human beings on earth when life expectancy did not exceed 46 years. Today we cross the eight billion mark in a world shrunk by water stress, climate change and drought. Food security All over the world.
This situation is particularly important for the African continent, which has 1.2 billion people today and 2.1 billion by 2050, while being heavily dependent on grain imports. Nigeria exemplifies this population boom on the continent. With a population of 211 million, it is now the seventh most populous country in the world. By 2050, with 410 million people, it will rank third directly behind India and China and ahead of the United States.
Geopolitics of Cereals
If the French disagree on the origin of the proverb “Government is Prognosis”Between 1925 and 1929, Theodore Steig, Resident General of Morocco, was the first to use the famous slogan: “Government means rain”.
Today, we are there. Priority of prioritiesEnsuring food security For all, starting with the development of resources that are becoming increasingly scarce, especially water, consumption is experiencing a reverse trajectory and a staggering increase.
Africa has no choice but to strengthen South-South cooperation and its integration, to accumulate its wealth and reduce its independence vis-à-vis the outside world. It should be remembered that the continent has borne the brunt of the Russian occupation of Ukraine, as these two countries are among the most important grain suppliers to Africa. Also, Macky Sall, the current head of the African Union, visited Moscow, aiming to ensure the continuity of supplies in exchange for the continent’s neutrality against Western sanctions imposed on Russia. The geopolitics of grains in all its glory.
What is Morocco’s role through the OCP?
OCP is a rising star globally due to its leadership in fertilizer production, particularly as a result of rising global prices and progressive demand for fertilizers, resulting from a growing population.
Recognizing its role in Africa in particular, OCP through its subsidiary OCP Africa is at the forefront of action with farmers everywhere in Africa. A month ago, the OCP announced that it would provide 4 million tons of fertilizers to the African continent to reduce food security risks by 2023, double the amount allocated in 2021.
It embodies the theory of Moroccan diplomacy that supports South-South cooperation and translates it into action. Didn’t King Mohammed VI say so in his address to the African Union in January 2017? “Gas or oil will not meet basic food needs! Now, isn’t Africa’s biggest challenge its food security?”. Five years ago, Sovereignty was already drawing attention to what we are experiencing today and what would be the greatest challenge for the world. It is not for nothing that Morocco is working on two major fertilizer production projects in Nigeria and Ethiopia, which will create a third of Africa’s population by 2050.
Also, according to IFA (International Fertilizer Association), Africa has increased its consumption of fertilizers by 70% in 10 years, leaving a huge room for improvement. Since average fertilizer consumption in the continent is 17 kg/ha, this average should be 61 kg/ha. Not only is it aware of the margins the African market offers, but OCP has several fertilizer manufacturing units in Jorfi and plans to open new factories till 2025. The European market will also turn to Morocco following a ban on its main supplier, Russia. Fertilizers provide up to 40% of its fertilizer requirements. Europe has very few alternatives as China now prefers to allocate most of its production to its own consumption.
Global geopolitics, combined with climate change and population growth, accentuate all factors An important role for Morocco through the OCP to set himself up as Global assurance of food security. The future is promising for the leading industrial group in Morocco, which is set to reach record revenues of over 11 billion dollars in 2022.
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