More Egyptian Investment In Sudanese Farmland

Via Reuters, a report of more Egyptian investment in Sudanese agricultural land.  As the article notes:

“…Egyptian private equity firm Citadel Capital is investing in 500,000 feddans (210,000 hectares) of farmland in Sudan, an executive said on Tuesday.

Gulf and other Arab countries have been investing in a range of farming projects in Sudan, Africa’s biggest country by area and long viewed as having huge agricultural potential.

“We are investing in 274,000 feddans in the north and the rest in the south,” Ahmed El Houssieny, managing director at Citadel Capital, told reporters on the sidelines of a conference in Cairo.

He said the firm operating the project was called Sabina, a company set up by Citadel, and said it had the right to farm the land for 99 years.

Citadel’s move follows an initiative announced in August by another Egyptian firm, Beltone Private Equity, to invest up to $1 billion in agricultural projects in a venture with Sudan’s Kenana Sugar Company.

“There are few people who have expertise in widescale farming and we are currently working with some Australian experts to grow (on) 5,000 experimental feddans,” Houssieny said.

The farmland would mainly be used to grow sugar cane, corn and wheat, he said.

Abdul Rahim Ali Hamad, state minister at Sudan’s Agriculture Ministry, said in May investment in Sudan by Arab states seeking to guarantee supplies of staples would account for up to 50 percent of all investment in the country from 2010.

Gulf Arab states, which are heavily dependent on food imports, have turned their sights to land investments in many African nations to grow food for their own populations.

Analysts have said such deals are viewed as land grabs and could harm the reputation of Gulf states. .

But Houssieny said produce from Sabina’s farmland would serve to fill a supply gap within the Sudanese market in addition to catering to export markets.

“There is a shortage of basic food commodities in Sudan so we will ensure local supply first then further on we will look at exports,” he said adding that despite some political risks his firm believed in, “the long term advantages of investing in Sudan and Africa.”

Sudan has a varied climate, with heavy rainfall in some areas and water from the Nile which means it can grow a range of crops from wheat and animal feed to citruses and oilseeds.”

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About This Blog And Its Author
Seeds Of A Revolution is committed to defining the disruptive geopolitics of the global Farms Race.  Due to the convergence of a growing world population, increased water scarcity, and a decrease in arable land & nutrient-rich soil, a spike of international investment interest in agricultural is inevitable and apt to bring a heretofore domestic industry into a truly global realm.  Whether this transition involves global land leases or acquisitions, the fundamental need for food & the protectionist feelings this need can give rise to is highly likely to cause such transactions to move quickly into the geopolitical realm.  It is this disruptive change, and the potential for a global farms race, that Seeds Of A Revolution tracks, analyzes, and forecasts.

Educated at Yale University (Bachelor of Arts - History) and Harvard (Master in Public Policy - International Development), Monty Simus has long held a keen interest in natural resource policy and the geopolitical implications of anticipated stresses in the areas of freshwater scarcity, biodiversity reserves & parks, and farm land.  Monty has lived, worked, and traveled in more than forty countries spanning Africa, China, western Europe, the Middle East, South America, and Southeast & Central Asia, and his personal interests comprise economic development, policy, investment, technology, natural resources, and the environment, with a particular focus on globalization’s impact upon these subject areas.  Monty writes about freshwater scarcity issues at and frontier investment markets at