Fight against food insecurity in West Africa
ECOWAS and AFD strengthen their cooperation in the fight against food insecurity in West Africa with the financial participation of the European Union
The President of the Commission of the Economic Community of West African States of (ECOWAS) and the Country Director of the French Development Agency (AFD) in Abuja had signed on 27 November 2014, in presence of the French Ambassador in Nigeria, two grant agreements in order to improve food security and to increase income among small scale farmers.
- Support the implementation of the ECOWAS Regional Food Security Reserve to respond effectively to food crisis
Food security remains a major concern for West African leaders. Thus, the recent food crisis led all the regional stakeholders to think about the implementation of a regional storage strategy in order to be able to respond quickly and effectively, wherever needed.
The grant agreement, in the amount of 28.558 million EUR, signed between ECOWAS and AFD will support the setting up of the Regional Food Security Reserve translating regional solidarity in case of major food crisis: will support the national storage systems in Member States and their network and will strengthen the local storage capacities.
For this project, for a total amount of 56 million Euros funded by the European Union, a part of the management of these funds has been delegated to AFD for implementation.
According to ECOWAS, it is “essential for ECOWAS Member States to be immune against a food crisis. Indeed, the management of food security in ECOWAS region is a major concern for our governments, regional organizations, including ECOWAS, WAEMU and CILSS, and their partners."
- Support the Regional Plan for fight and control of Fruits Flies in West Africa to improve fruit and vegetable growers’ incomes and reduce export losses
The West African horticultural sector contributes to the food balance of millions of consumers at the local and regional level. It represents an important source of foreign exchange and employment for low-income countries. Unfortunately, it continues to be handicapped by non-compliance with international phytosanitary standards in particular because of infestations of pulp by phytophagous flies. This causes heavy income losses for West African producer countries.
The agreement, in the amount of 17.558 million EUR, signed between ECOWAS and AFD will enable the establishment of monitoring and fighting mechanisms against the infestation of orchards. The project will also support applied research in order to develop improved cultivation techniques and allow their dissemination in the Member States.
The Regional plan is financed through an EU grant of a sum of 17 million EUR, of which the management of which is partly delegated to AFD; and an AFD grant in an amount of 1.5 million EUR.
ECOWAS and its Member States will contribute a total of 5 million EUR to this program.
According to ECOWAS, “the damage caused by plant-feeding flies to fruit intended for international markets has for many years been recognized as a problem with a heavy economic and social impact at local, national and regional level. Flies don’t know any borders. This is what explains the orientation for a coordinated and concerted regional action."
AFD, the Agence Française de Développement, is a public development-finance institution that has worked for seventy years to alleviate poverty and foster sustainable development in the developing world and in the French Overseas Provinces. AFD executes the French government’s development aid policies.
Working in four continents, AFD has seventy-one field offices and bureaus, including nine in France’s overseas provinces and one in Brussels. The Agency provides financing and support for projects that improve living conditions, promote economic growth, and protect the planet.
In 2013, AFD committed €7.8 billion to projects in developing and emerging countries and in the French Overseas Provinces. These AFD-financed projects will provide schooling for children, improve maternal health, promote equality between men and women, support farmers and small businesses, and bolster access to drinking water, transportation and energy. These newly-funded projects will also help mitigate climate disruption by abating nearly 3.3 million metric tons of carbon dioxide-equivalent annually.
About European Union
The European Union is made up of 28 Member States who have decided to gradually link together their know-how, resources and destinies. Together, during a period of enlargement of 50 years, they have built a zone of stability, democracy and sustainable development whilst maintaining cultural diversity, tolerance and individual freedoms. The European Union is committed to sharing its achievements and its values with countries and peoples beyond its borders.
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The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) is a regional group of fifteen countries, founded in 1975. Its mission is to promote economic integration in "all fields of economic activity, particularly industry, transport, telecommunications, energy, agriculture, natural resources, commerce, monetary and financial questions, social and cultural matters.
The ECOWAS Agricultural Policy (ECOWAS) is a framework to support agricultural development in West Africa coherent with the Regional Strategic Vision 2020. The ECOWAP/PDDAA implementation is based on two complementary pillars: the National Agricultural and Food Security Investment Plans (NAIP-FS) and the Regional Agricultural Investment Plan (RAIP).
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