Can Agriculture Contribute to Inclusive Rural Economies? Findings from Southern Africa

"If agricultural development is to contribute to economic growth, it has to do more than increase the productivity or efficiency of farming. It also needs to contribute to employment in the rural non-farm sector. This is because increases in the intensity, efficiency or competitiveness of agriculture often push large numbers of people off the land – and opportunities for finding alternative employment in the cities are scarce. Inclusive growth thus also depends on the development of an inclusive and diverse rural non-farm economy (RNFE). This is something often ignored both by agricultural and labour market policy. Policymakers, therefore, need to ask how different pathways of agricultural development affect non-farm employment."