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    Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
    Country: Cameroon

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    Source: Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, Government of the Republic of Mali
    Country: Mali

    • The Government of Mali and the OECD have organised together a high-level international conference for the economic recovery and development of Mali, in co-operation with France and other friends and partners of Mali. This conference took place within the context of the Peace and Reconciliation Agreement signed in May-June 2015 following from the mediation process led by Algeria, with the support of the international community.

    • The Government of Mali, representatives of the signatory parties to the Agreement, Malian and international civil society and private sector representatives, as well as 64 countries and partner regional and international organisations took part in the conference.

    • The conference had four objectives:

    1. To provide a platform for the Government of Mali to present the immediate steps it is taking to implement the Peace and Reconciliation Agreement, in the context of a fragile security situation in the North of Mali; its specific Development Strategy for the northern regions, ongoing and planned reforms and the proposed model and governance structure of the Sustainable Development Fund.

    2. To strengthen the dialogue on public policies required for greater inclusion, jobs and stability, in particular for more efficient and transparent governance, an ambitious but realistic decentralisation process, inclusive growth, and development cooperation that supports Mali’s priorities and the implementation of reforms in strategic sectors.

    3. For international partners (bilateral, regional, and multilateral, public and private) to reaffirm their commitment around Mali’s strategic priorities, notably the immediate commitments of the Government to implement the Agreement on Peace and Reconciliation during the interim period (2015-2017) in a tangible and swift manner.

    4. Beyond the interim period, and in the context of the African Union’s Agenda 2063 and the SDGs, to take stock of the measures, partnerships and financial resources required in the medium and long terms for inclusive and sustainable economic recovery.

    • The President of the Republic of Mali, the President of the French Republic and the Secretary-General of the OECD opened the conference. All recalled the impact of the crisis in 2012 and the progress that had been achieved since then. They highlighted the current challenges and also the huge potential of Mali’s people and territories, as part of an interdependent Sahel region. The Secretary-General of the OECD stressed the importance of inclusivity in public policies and partnerships. He reaffirmed the OECD commitment to make its expertise available to Mali and the international community. The Malian President confirmed his country’s total commitment to implementing the Agreement, in a spirit of inclusion and with all parties honouring their promises. He called on the international community to support the Malian parties in this process. The President of the French Republic applauded the exemplary nature of the reconstruction efforts in progress, and announced the support pledged by France for the period 2015-2017.

    • The presentation of the interim findings by the international Joint Evaluation Mission was positively received. They provide a clear vision of the priority actions to be pursued in the short, medium, and long-terms in the North of Mali, in a security context that remains fragile and constrains humanitarian access, the protection of civilians, and project implementation. The cost of actions aimed at rapid recovery, poverty reduction, and development over the next six years was estimated at FCFA 2 320 billion (3.5 billion euros).

    • The Government of Mali expressed its determination to create the conditions needed to accelerate growth throughout the country as a whole. In particular, it confirmed its full commitment to improve the management of public affairs, the business climate, and the mobilisation of tax resources. It reasserted its will to implement a process of decentralisation that would give the regions in Mali effective responsibilities and capacities with regard to local affairs and territorial development, together with a redefining of the essential missions of the State at the level of the country as a whole.

    • The Government presented the Specific Development Strategy for the northern regions in Mali and announced a contribution, from its own resources, of FCFA 300 billion (450 million euros) over the period 2016-2018. The planning process will continue, with a view in particular to ensure greater depth and ownership of this document at the national and regional levels. The Government also announced the establishment of the Sustainable Development Fund provided for in the Agreement. This Fund will have a shared and inclusive governance structure and will comply with the most stringent standards in terms of accountability and transparency. The Government requests technical assistance from its partners to carry out the necessary studies and set up the Fund.

    • The signatory movements spoke with a unified voice to signal their determination to bring the peace process to a successful conclusion. They called on all actors to respect the Agreement and honour their commitments.

    • Participants declared their full support for implementation of the Agreement. They welcomed the positive dynamic initiated in recent weeks and the constructive cooperation forged between the parties. They stressed the beneficial impact that implementation of the measures set out in the Agreement would have on the full deployment of humanitarian and development interventions in the North of Mali. All actors will join forces to achieve that objective.

    • Participants welcomed the Government’s commitment to inclusive territorial development and the participation of signatory movements in formulating the Specific Development Strategy for the regions in the North of Mali. Mali’s partners confirmed their mobilisation to support the implementation of all aspects of the Agreement and the Strategy.

    • The conference provided an opportunity to take stock of partners’ financial commitments for Mali, which will amount to FCFA 2 120 billion (€3.2 billion) for the period 2015-2017 – including, on the basis of preliminary announcements made at the conference, FCFA 397 billion (€605 million) for the regions in the North. The partners recalled their commitment to the co-ordination, harmonisation and transparency of aid and recognised the leadership role that the Government of Mali must play in this regard. The process of mobilising resources for the implementation of the Agreement will continue under the auspices of the Comité de Suivi as provided for in the Agreement.

    You will find all relevant documents on the OECD website :

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    Source: Reuters - AlertNet
    Country: Nigeria

    Source: Reuters - Tue, 3 Nov 2015 11:38 GMT

    By Alexis Akwagyiram

    ABEOKUTA, Nigeria, Nov 3 (Reuters) - The pothole-ridden roads that connect Lagos, Nigeria's bustling commercial capital, with Adeniyi Bunmi's leafy farm in southwestern Ogun state are among the many challenges faced by the entrepreneur.

    Read the full article on Reuters - AlertNet

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    Source: World Food Programme
    Country: Afghanistan, Armenia, Bangladesh, Benin, Bolivia (Plurinational State of), Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cabo Verde, Cambodia, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Colombia, Costa Rica, Côte d'Ivoire, Djibouti, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Ethiopia, Gambia, Ghana, Guatemala, Guinea, Haiti, Honduras, India, Indonesia, Jordan, Kenya, Kyrgyzstan, Lesotho, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritania, Mexico, Mozambique, Myanmar, Nepal, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, occupied Palestinian territory, Pakistan, Panama, Peru, Philippines, Rwanda, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, South Sudan, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, Tajikistan, Thailand, Togo, Turkey, United Republic of Tanzania, Viet Nam, World, Yemen, Zambia, Zimbabwe

    This bulletin examines trends in staple food and fuel prices, the cost of the basic food basket and consumer price indices for 70 countries in the third quarter of 2015 (July to September).1 The maps on pages 6–7 disaggregate the impact analysis to sub-national level.

    • FAO’s global cereal price index still continued to fall in Q3-2015, down 12.7 percent year-on-year and is now at 2010 levels.

    • The real price2 of wheat dropped a further 14 percent over the last quarter. Prices are 30 percent lower than in Q3-2014, thanks to record production in 2015, abundant global supply and strong export competition.

    • The real price of maize has dropped 2 percent since Q2-2015 and is 3 percent lower than in Q3-2014. However, global production 2015/16 is projected to be lower than this year.

    • The real price of rice has fallen by 1 percent since Q2-2015 and is 15 percent lower than Q3 last year.
    Despite reduced production amid increased global utilisation, weakened import demand has kept rice prices in check.

    • In Q3-2015, the real price of crude oil dropped by 19 percent compared with Q2-2015 and reached a level last seen in 2004.

    • The cost of the minimum food basket increased severely (>10%) during Q3-2015 in four countries:
    Ghana, Myanmar, Syria and Tanzania. High increases (5–10%) were seen in Benin, Ethiopia, Haiti, Kenya and Mali. In the other monitored countries, the change was low or moderate (<5%).

    • Price spikes, as monitored by ALPS (Alert for Price Spikes), are evident in 16 countries, particularly in Ghana, India, Malawi, Myanmar, South Sudan,
    Sudan and Yemen (see the map below).3 These spikes indicate crisis levels for the two most important staples in the country, whether they are either cassava, maize, rice, wheat, sorghum or sugar.

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    Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
    Country: Cameroon, Central African Republic, Guinea, Liberia, Niger, Nigeria, Sierra Leone

    Selon un rapport d'évaluation sur le terrain de Médecins sans Frontières publié le 29 octobre, environ 21 000 personnes ont été touchées par les inondations dans la localité de Zina, dans la région de l'Extrême Nord du Cameroun.

    Le 2 novembre, une personne a été tuée par des hommes armés qui ont mis le feu à des dizaines de maisons dans la capitale Bangui. Des centaines de personnes ont fui leurs maisons le même jour suite à une attaque sur le quartier PK-5. Depuis le 26 octobre, au moins 10 personnes ont été tuées et plus de 30 blessées à Bangui.

    Le 1er novembre, des milliers de manifestants antigouvernementaux ont défilé à Niamey, la capitale du Niger pour dénoncer ce qu'ils déclarent être des irrégularités dans les listes électorales avant les élections présidentielles. En février 2016, le Président Mahamadou Issoufou devrait briguer un second mandat de cinq ans.

    Le 27 octobre, 338 personnes détenues en captivité par Boko Haram ont été libérées lorsque des troupes ont attaqué un camp dans les villages de Bulajilin et Manawashe sur les bords de la forêt de Sambisa, dans l'Etat de Borno. Les anciens captifs, huit hommes, 138 femmes et 192 enfants, ont été emmenés à Mubi, dans l'Etat d'Adamawa, par les militaires.

    La Guinée a enregistré un nouveau cas d'Ebola, le 30 octobre, chez un nouveau-né dont la mère est confirmée être infectée par le virus. Si aucun nouveau cas n’est rapporté, la Sierra Leone sera déclarée exempte de la maladie le 7 novembre. À compter du 1er novembre, le Libéria a atteint 60 des 90 jours de la surveillance active et a été déclarée exempte d’Ebola depuis le 3 septembre.

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    Source: UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
    Country: Cameroon, Central African Republic, Guinea, Liberia, Niger, Nigeria, Sierra Leone

    According to a field assessment report by MSF released on 29 October, around 21,000 people have been affected by floods in the Zina locality in Cameroon’s Far North region.

    On 2 November, one person was killed in the capital Bangui by armed men, who set fire to scores of homes in the city. Hundreds of people fled their homes in the capital on the same day following an attack on the PK-5 neighbourhood. Since 26 October, at least 10 people have been killed and more than 30 wounded in Bangui.

    On 1 November, thousands of anti-government protesters marched in Niger's capital to denounce what they say are irregularities in voter lists ahead of presidential elections. In February 2016 President Mahamadou Issoufou is expected to seek a second five-year mandate.

    On 27 October, 338 people held captive by Boko Haram were freed when troops raided a camp in Bulajilin and Manawashe villages on the edge of Sambisa Forest in Borno State. The former captives, comprising eight men, 138 women and 192 children, were taken to Mubi in Adamawa State by the military.

    Guinea recorded one new Ebola case on 30 October in a newborn baby whose mother is confirmed to be infected with Ebola. If no new cases are reported, Sierra Leone will be declared Ebola free on 7 November. As of 1 November, Liberia has reached day 60 of the 90 days of active surveillance and has been Ebola free since 3 September.

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    Source: UN Population Fund, World Bank
    Country: Burkina Faso, Chad, Côte d'Ivoire, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, World

    Niamey, 29 octobre 2015. Le lancement du « Projet régional d’Autonomisation des femmes et de dividende démographique au Sahel » aura lieu au Palais des Congrès de Niamey le lundi 2 novembre 2015 sous le haut patronage de son Excellence, Monsieur Brigi Rafini, Premier Ministre du Niger. Le Projet régional d’autonomisation des femmes du Sahel et de dividende démographique procède d’une initiative conjointe des Nations Unies et du Groupe de la Banque mondiale (BM) pour répondre à l’appel lancé par les Présidents des pays du Sahel.

    Conçu grâce à un partenariat avec l’Organisation ouest-africaine de la santé (OOAS), le Comité permanent inter-Etats de lutte contre la sécheresse dans le Sahel (CILSS), le Centre d'études et de recherche sur la population pour le développement (CERPOD), il sera mis en œuvre avec l’assistance technique de UNFPA, le Fonds des Nations Unies pour la population, et le financement de la Banque mondiale pour un montant de 205 millions de dollars US sur une période de quatre ans. Il concerne 6 pays, à savoir le Burkina Faso, la Côte d’Ivoire, le Mali, la Mauritanie, le Niger et le Tchad.

    Conformément aux objectifs de développement durable récemment adoptés, son objectif est de permettre à ses principales bénéficiaires, les femmes et les jeunes filles, d’être autonomes et de pouvoir prendre des décisions qui contribueront, de façon durable, au développement de leurs communautés. Avec ses trois volets, le projet vise à améliorer la demande pour la planification familiale et les services de santé maternelle et infantile. La deuxième composante permettra de mettre en place une capacité régionale pour la sécurisation des produits contraceptifs et de santé maternelle et infantile essentiels et pour la formation des agents de santé qualifiés tels que les sages-femmes et le troisième pour aider à l’habilitation des filles et des femmes.

    La région du Sahel est caractérisée par une incidence élevée de pauvreté, d'insécurité alimentaire ainsi que par de multiples contraintes qui ont un impact négatif sur sa sécurité et son développement. La région est confrontée à divers facteurs de fragilité et d'instabilité, allant des conflits, aux sécheresses et inondations récurrentes en passant par la vulnérabilité aux crises mondiales (par exemple, la crise financière, la crise des prix des denrées). Près de la moitié de la population vit avec moins de 1,25 USD par jour, avec plus de 11 millions de personnes exposées au risque de famine et 5 millions d'enfants de moins de cinq à la malnutrition aiguë. La sous-région est généralement en bas du classement de l'indice de développement humain du Programme des Nations Unies pour le développement (PNUD).

    Au cours des dernières années, la croissance économique a été forte dans les pays sahéliens, mais n'a pas entraîné une hausse du Produit Intérieur Brut (PIB) par habitant ni une plus grande égalité entre les sexes. La lente transition démographique constitue un facteur sous-jacent clé pour les pays du Sahel n'ayant pas réussi à traduire leur forte croissance du PIB en une plus grande prospérité et en un meilleur bien-être de leur population.

    En raison de leur profil démographique, les pays n’arrivent pas à tirer profit de la croissance inclusive. Mais, le Sahel peut capitaliser sur sa démographie, en particulier les jeunes qui constituent la majorité de la population et récolter les avantages du dividende démographique. Le dividende démographique est la croissance économique inclusive et accélérée qui survient lorsque la population en âge de travailler dans un pays croît plus vite que le nombre de personnes à charge.

    Et c’est pour relever les défis liés à la structure de la population auxquels font face les pays du Sahel, que la Déclaration dénommée «Appel de Niamey sur les défis démographiques au Sahel » a été lancée par le Président de la République du Niger, Son Excellence Monsieur Mahamadou Issoufou, le 6 novembre 2013, à l’occasion de la visite dans son pays du Secrétaire-Général des Nations Unies, M. Ban Ki-moon, du Président du Groupe de la Banque Mondiale, M. Jim Yong Kim, de la Présidente de la Commission de l’Union Africaine, Dr Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, et du Directeur exécutif de l’UNFPA, Dr Babatundé Osotimehin.

    Par ce lancement, les six gouvernements participants mettent en œuvre un programme ambitieux pour ouvrir la fenêtre du dividende démographique dans le Sahel.

    Pour plus d'informations ou des interviews avec les participants, merci de contacter:

    Moussa Abdou Saley, Chargé de communication et Plaidoyer : +227 92 19 83 50 ; [email protected]
    Souleymane Saddi Maâzou, Chargé de communication : +227 92 19 83 56 ; [email protected]
    Habibatou Gologo, Spécialiste média régionale : + 221 77 740 09 56+ 221 77 740 09 56 ; [email protected]
    Rachel Winter Jones, Chargée communication : + 1 202 4584720+ 1 202 4584720/+ 1202 446 8196+ 1202 446 8196 ; [email protected]

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    Source: Food and Agriculture Organization
    Country: Algeria, Chad, Eritrea, India, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Pakistan, Sudan, World, Yemen

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    Source: World Food Programme
    Country: Cameroon, Chad, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Malawi, Nepal, Niger, Nigeria, South Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic, World, Yemen, Zambia, Zimbabwe


    From the October IPC Report: An estimated 3.9 million people or 34% of the population in South Sudan are classified as severely food and nutrition insecure. An estimated 30,000 people in Unity State are currently experiencing Catastrophe (IPC Phase 5) with a concrete risk of famine occurring between October and December 2015 if urgent humanitarian access and assistance is not provided. More than 40% of Yemen's population has poor or borderline food consumption, with the country's 1.4 million IDPs most affected. High prices and limited availability of food, increasing unemployment and low humanitarian access are the main drivers of food insecurity.

    WFP's recent food security assessment indicates that food insecurity in Syria has reached worrying proportions, with one in three households being food insecure. IDPs are the most food insecure group, with 40% food insecure.

    According to the regional vulnerability assessment committee, some 13.4 million people in Southern Africa are at risk of food and livelihood insecurity, a 13% increase from the previous year. There have been major increases in vulnerability in Malawi, Namibia, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

    Insecurity in northeastern Nigeria and in bordering areas of neighbouring countries has prompted the internal displacement of more than 1.58 million people. In addition, 135,000 people have left Nigeria for Niger, Cameroun and Chad.

    Some 2.3 million people are food insecure as a result of a second year of dry weather in Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador.

    In Haiti, the Government through the Ministry of Agriculture estimated that as of late September, between 300,000 and 560,000 people are facing food insecurity at crisis levels. A more recent estimate by Fewsnet suggests that in the absence of assistance, by March 2016 up to 1.5 million people in Haiti will be in Crisis (IPC Phase 3).

    The food security situation in the earthquake-affected districts of Nepal has improved since May. Nevertheless, some more remote districts are still classified as facing crisis and emergency food insecurity.

    The on-going El Nino phenomenon will continue throughout 2015 and is likely to extend into the first quarter of 2016. El Nino has affected most growing seasons in the northern hemisphere and is expected to affect those of southern Africa, Indonesia and the Pacific, and South America from late 2015 to early 2016.

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    Source: UN Population Fund, World Bank
    Country: Burkina Faso, Chad, Côte d'Ivoire, Mali, Mauritania, Niger

    Official Launch of the Regional Project

    « Sahel Women Empowerment and Demographic Dividend »

    Niamey, 4 November 2015. The “Sahel Women Empowerment and Demographic Dividend” Project was officially launched on 2 November 2015, under the patronage of His Excellency, Mr. Brigi Rafini, Prime Minister of the Republic of Niger at the Palais des Congrès in Niamey.

    The Sahel Women Empowerment and Demographic Dividend Project is a partnership and joint response by the United Nations and the World Bank Group to a request from the Presidents of six countries of the Sahel -Burkina Faso, Cote d'Ivoire, Mali, Mauritania, Niger and Chad.

    As stated by Mr. Rafini, it is now time to act for the Sahel population and create more economic opportunities for women and girls and their families. "Beyond the speeches, there is a strong desire to move from words to action”, he said, “ensuring at the same time that this project will have positive results for the region”:

    Several speakers including the ministers from Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Mauritania, Niger and the representative of the Government of Cote d’Ivoire, all recognized the challenges facing the Sahel and how the rapid implementation of such a project could benefit people in the region.

    “This is a strong signal to improve the health of mothers and children," said the Deputy Director General of the West African Health Organization (WAHO), Dr. Laurent Assogba.

    "The commitment of the government teams from the six countries involved in the Sahel Women’s Empowerment and Demographic Dividend Project is remarkable. They recognize that its success depends not only on the leadership of the Ministries of Health and Population, but also the active involvement of Ministries of Education, Employment, Youth, Communication, Social affairs and the Promotion of women," said Soji Adeyi, Director, Health, Nutrition and Population Global Practice, World Bank.

    “The World Bank is proud to support this ambitious and unique multi-sectorial, multi-partner, regional approach to improve women and girls’ empowerment, and their access to health services. This will help create more economic opportunities and prosperity for women, girls and their families,” added Mr. Adeyi.

    The demographic dividend is the inclusive accelerated economic growth that may result when a country’s working age population grows larger than the non-working dependents.

    The Regional Director of UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund, for West and Central Africa, Mr. Mabingue Ngom, explained that the Fund “reiterates its appreciation and profound gratitude towards the Heads of State of the countries involved for their strong political commitment and therefore support for the implementation of this project which, no doubt, will contribute to improving the living conditions of women, children, youth and adolescents in the respective countries.”

    Mr. Ngom said he was convinced that the project will contribute in an effective way “to implement the 2030 Agenda for sustainable development and especially the African Union 2063 Agenda, in line with the six goals of building a continent where the potential of women and young people is realized. We will achieve this through action, our collective action."

    The launch was followed by the establishment of the project’s Steering Committee chaired by Niger. Over the next four days experts from the Sahel countries involved in the project will meet together with representatives from the WAHO, the World Bank and UNFPA to discuss the procedures and practical arrangements to begin immediate implementation of SWEDD.

    Developed thanks to a partnership between the West African Health Organization (WAHO), the Permanent Inter-State Committee to Fight against Drought in the Sahel (CILSS) and the Centre for Applied Research on Population and Development (CERPOD), and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the project will be implemented with technical assistance from UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund, and funding of 205 million USD from the World Bank over a 4-year period. The Project will be implemented across Burkina Faso, Côte d'Ivoire, Mali, Mauritania, Niger and Chad.

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    Source: US Agency for International Development
    Country: Benin, Burkina Faso, Cabo Verde, Côte d'Ivoire, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Togo, United States of America, World

    Ensure continuous access to fortified cooking oil and wheat flour for at least 85 percent of the population of West Africa.

    Life of Project:
    January 2011 – September 2016

    Total USAID/West Africa Funding:
    U.S. $2.88 million

    Geographic Scope:
    Benin, Burkina Faso, Cape Verde, Cote D’Ivoire, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone and Togo.

    Implementing Partner:
    Helen Keller International

    Feed the Future Initiative:
    Feed the Future’s nutritional strategy is aimed at increasing nutritional levels in West Africa, especially within the first 1000 days of life.

    Project Description:
    Micronutrient deficiencies are responsible for widespread health and economic consequences, including maternal mortality, child mortality, stunting, blindness, chronic anemia and reduced capacity to work. West Africa is challenged with pervasive, severe and chronic malnutrition and micronutrient deficiency.

    Fortify West Africa, part of the Feed the Future Initiative, works to harmonize fortification policies and standards and encourage private sector adoption of fortification to reach the most vulnerable mothers and children with vital micronutrients such as vitamin A, iron, folic acid and B vitamins. Fortify West Africa has made fortified oil and flour common even in rural communities and helped promote the Enrichi regional fortified product brand. A number of stakeholders are responsible for program implementation and success, including: the West African Economic and Monetary Union (UEMOA), the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), milling and cooking oil industries and private companies producing micronutrients for fortification.

    Program Components:
    • Harmonizing standards between UEMOA and ECOWAS states to encourage intra-regional trade.
    • Advocating to ECOWAS and UEMOA states to mandate fortification of locally produced and imported cooking oil and wheat flour.
    • Promoting the Regional Enrichi logo on fortified foods to certify these foods for trade and for the consumer.
    • Training officials on monitoring and quality control using testing (called “I-checks”) at manufacturing and market levels.

    • 12 of 15 ECOWAS countries have mandatory legislation for fortifying cooking oil and 14 out of the 15 have mandatory legislation for fortifying wheat flour.
    • An estimated 84 percent of the total population of ECOWAS has access to micronutrient-fortified wheat flour and 74 percent has access to vitamin A-fortified vegetable oil.
    • The Enrichi logo is a successful example of a harmonized regionally approved brand that will build consumer awareness and promote fortified foods in West Africa.

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    Source: US Agency for International Development
    Country: Benin, Burkina Faso, Cabo Verde, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Congo, Côte d'Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Togo, United States of America, World

    CORAF/WECARD Objective:
    Conduct, coordinate and disseminate research on agriculture practices and improved seeds to member states and national research centers.

    Support from USAID/West Africa:
    2002 to Present

    Linked Programs:
    CORAF partners with USAID’s
    West African Seed Program.

    Geographic Focus:
    22 member states: Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Cape Verde, Central African Republic, Chad, Congo, Cote d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of Congo, Gabon, the Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, and Togo.

    The West and Central African Council for Agricultural Research and Development (CORAF/WECARD) was created in 1987 to “improve the efficiency and effectiveness of small-scale producers and to promote the agribusiness sector.” It focuses on developing new technologies and innovations to benefit farmers in the region and on collecting and dispensing agricultural data. It also strengthens and coordinates the existing regional agricultural systems, as well as giving policy options to its member states that can encourage agricultural growth.

    CORAF/WECARD is one of the main implementers of the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Program (CAADP) Pillar 4, which had the goal of 6 percent agricultural growth by 2015. To date, nine countries have exceeded this target (Angola, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Burkina Faso, Republic of the Congo, Gambia, Guinea-Bissau, Nigeria, Senegal, and Tanzania) and another four have achieved growth of between 5 and 6 percent. In June 2014, the African Union extended this mission, setting a new goal of doubling agricultural productivity by 2025

    USAID Support
    USAID support to CORAF/WECARD has strengthened its capacity to build a solid base of research information in West Africa. CORAF/WECARD’s work increases farmer access to information on food and farming systems, natural resource management, markets and trade, climate change adaptation and biotechnology. It also focuses on scaling up agricultural technologies to strengthen the link between research and the farm so farmers can improve productivity and increase profit. One example of this is in Benin, where CORAF/WECARD discovered that, if farmers precede rice cultivation with cowpeas, they will get the same yield from the rice with half of the usual amount of mineral fertilizer. CORAF/WECARD disseminates thousands of such best practices that have an enormous impact on the labor to profit ratio of farming in the region.

    USAID support to CORAF/WECARD also includes improving the production and availability of quality-certified seeds for farmers in the region through the West African Seed Program, thus improving farmers’ yields and crop quality.Activities Supported by USAID/West Africa in 2013
    • Baseline studies on agricultural research and post-harvest research for five value chains including maize, rice, millet, sorghum and livestock.
    • Trials on high-yielding varieties of rice, maize and sorghum resistant to major biotic and abiotic stresses.
    • Tests to improve the market quality of targeted cereal and traditional meat processed products. • Capacity building for producers and agro-processors.

    Key CORAF/WECARD Technologies and How They are Being Scaled Up 1) Climate-smart crop varieties like submergence-tolerant rice, drought-tolerant sesame and maize, heat tolerant and high-yielding millet and sorghum. Scaling up methods include demonstration plots and engaging all value chain actors, from plant breeders to private sector partners, to encourage commercializing new varieties of seeds.
    2) Integrated Soil Fertility Management includes crop and site-specific fertilizer recommendations, best practices to rehabilitate degraded land and preserve soil fertility, and urea deep-placement (UDP) of fertilizer to maximize efficiency. These best practices are dispersed through demonstrations of deep placement of fertilizer and training agro-dealers so they can educate customers on how to most efficiently use fertilizer
    3) Post-Harvest Quality Management through improved storage containers and post-harvest practices to reduce aflatoxin levels, which in large amounts can cause fungus growth. Promotion of storage container use and demonstrations of small-scale grain harvest machinery (stripper, thresher, and winnower) are dramatically reducing waste.

    CORAF/WECARD and the Presidential Feed the Future Initiative
    Feed the Future is focused on creating sustainable improvements in agriculture by building the capacity of West African organizations that can take ownership of agricultural work in the region. CORAF/WECARD’s work targets every step in the value chains of staple crops and thus improves every aspect of West African small farmers’ livelihoods: better yields, more efficient and sustainable inputs, better access to markets and market data, and less wasteful processing. CORAF/WECARD’s strategy aligns with the mission of Feed the Future: holistic and long-term efforts to eliminate food insecurity in West Africa.

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    Source: US Agency for International Development
    Country: Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Togo, United States of America, World

    Increase regional availability and use of appropriate and affordable fertilizers.

    Life of Project:
    2012 – 2017

    Total USAID Funding:
    U.S. $20 million

    Geographic Scope:
    West Africa Region

    Implementing Partner:
    International Fertilizer Development Center (IFDC)

    Regional Partners:
    Africa Fertilizer and Agribusiness Partnership, ECOWAS, CORAF, CILSS

    Program Description:
    Fertilizer use in West Africa is far below the world average, leaving farmers without an important input that can significantly improve yields. The USAID West Africa Fertilizer Program (WAFP) aims to improve agriculture productivity by giving farmers better access to high quality, affordable fertilizers. The program strengthens private sector capacity for supply and distribution, and provides regional decision makers with critical fertilizer recommendations and subsidy program and impact information. WAFP also works with public officials to harmonize national fertilizer regulations and implement quality control programs to meet the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) regional standards.

    Program Components:
    • Implementing the regional ECOWAS fertilizer regulations, technical assistance for harmonization and national level quality control to decrease adulterated fertilizer sales.
    • Establishing a private-public sector West Africa Fertilizer Stakeholder Forum and forming a private sector-led Trade Association.
    • Providing access to critical market information and financing for fertilizer importers, blenders and distributors.
    • Providing up to date recommendations to suppliers, blenders and users of fertilizer for crops and conditions across West Africa.
    • Conducting fertilizer subsidy studies and facilitating consensus-based recommendations for subsidy efficiency and policy reform.

    • Facilitated development and conduct of West Africa Fertilizer Stakeholders’ Forum, a first ever innovative platform for public-private sector dialogue and business opportunities for fertilizer stakeholders in West Africa.
    • Facilitated implementation of the ECOWAS fertilizer regulatory framework by providing technical assistance for adoption of the main regulation, and by embarking on joint missions with CORAF, CILSS and ECOWAS to advocate for the implementation of seed, pesticides and fertilizer regulations. • Facilitated publication of the ECOWAS main fertilizer regulation in the national gazettes of eight Member States.
    • Established extensive geo-spatial database and directory of fertilizer stakeholders across West Africa.
    • Successfully piloted an e-tracking platform in Ghana to monitor and track subsidized fertilizer distribution.
    • Completed feasibility study for West Africa Fertilizer Traders’ Association.

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    Source: US Agency for International Development
    Country: Benin, Burkina Faso, Cabo Verde, Cameroon, Chad, Côte d'Ivoire, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Liberia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Togo, United States of America, World

    Expand the production and supply of quality certified seeds by increasing the capacity of the private sector and existing seed alliances and institutions in West Africa.

    Life of Project:
    2012 – 2017

    Total USAID Funding:
    U.S. $9 million

    Geographic Scope:
    Benin, Burkina Faso, Ghana, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal (main activities). Seed policy and regulations also cover Mauritania, Chad, Cape Verde, Cote d’Ivoire, Gambia, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Togo.

    Program Description:
    One of the largest constraints to productivity in West African agriculture is the inefficiency of the regional seed system. In response, the USAID/West African Seed Program (WASP) was initiated in 2012 through USAID’s regional partner, the West and Central African Council for Agricultural Research and Development (CORAF/WECARD). WASP’s goal is to increase the production of quality-improved certified seeds in West Africa’s seed supply from 12 percent to 25 percent. The West African seed value chain lacked strong links between seed producers, certifiers and farmers. WASP works to facilitate such links by recognizing the relationship between public and private sectors, and the central role of the private sector in the development of more standard quality seeds. WASP also increases the coordination capacity of regional seed networks including national seed associations, which are critical to the long-term success of a robust and high quality regional seed supply.

    The WASP program helps farmers to access higher quality seeds that improve yields and are resistant to pests and drought. WASP also encourages intra-regional trade by harmonizing regional seed standards and policies.

    Program Components:
    • Establishment and support of networks of plant breeders, quality controllers, certification personnel and West African members of the African Seed Trade Association (AFSTA).
    • Effective implementation of a regional seed policy, facilitating seed trade between ECOWAS Member States.
    • Production of sufficient quantities of quality-improved seeds to meet breeders’ demand to expand certified seed production.
    • Development of a strong West African private sector to ensure the supply of certified seeds of standard quality.
    • Capacity building of the National Seed Trade Association (ANCS), allowing it to fully play its role as a seed industry leader.

    Expected Outcomes:
    • An increase in the supply of certified seeds from 10-12 percent of total supply to 25 percent of total supply by 2017.
    • The establishment of an inclusive and operational Alliance for Seed Industry in West Africa (ASIWA). • The development of a National Quarantine Pest List for Togo, Benin and Ghana.

    WASP Role in the Presidential Feed the Future Initiative:
    Feed the Future is focused on permanent, foundational improvements to food economies that will support farmers in the long term. Its strategy is to identify constraints to create efficiency in production, and build the capacity of West Africans. WASP focuses on building the private sector and establishing seed networks so that farmers can have access to high quality seed supply that is self-sufficient.

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    Source: Grassroots
    Country: Burkina Faso, Ghana, Guinea, Mali, Senegal

    By Simon Adler and Beverly Bell
    November 4th, 2015

    Traditional, small-holder peasant agriculture is done by women. Women are the ones who save the seeds – the soul of the peasant population. This is to honor what women have inherited from their ancestors: the conservation of seeds as part of their knowledge to care for the whole family and nourish their communities.

    The green revolution introduced GMOs in Africa. Technicians and researchers come to tell our producers about agriculture from the outside. They tell us that these modern varieties of [GMO] seeds are going to increase our yield. So we will produce a lot, fill up our stores – but soon we will be sick and in the cemeteries. Isn’t it better to grow less, eat well, have good health, live a long life, and pay attention to the generations to come? We reject agriculture that pollutes with chemicals, pesticides, GMOs.

    Achieving our goals is a difficult struggle because we have few resources fighting against multinational corporations who have a lot of money. But development in Africa can’t take place on the backs of Africans, and Africa can’t develop without looking ahead for the children.

    We Are the Solution is a campaign in West Africa led by rural women from Senegal, Burkina Faso, Mali, Ghana and Guinea, though we are a campaign of both women and men. Our vision is to truly promote ancestral knowledge and put pressure on our government to take seriously the preservation of our peasant agriculture.

    The campaign has three objectives. First is the use and promotion of traditional knowledge transmitted from generation to generation, which supports food sovereignty and the preservation of peasant seeds. The second objective is to restore national policies favorable to agroecological peasant farming. And the third objective is the promotion of African agricultural production.

    Women, Land, and Agriculture

    In the agricultural sphere, development rests in the hands of the women, and their role is being proven repeatedly. We Are the Solution raises awareness and consciousness, key to changing the mentality of the people, on the importance of women in family farming and agricultural production.

    Women are the primary workers of the land and the majority of the workforce in agriculture, involved in every step of agricultural production: in the fields, 70% of African agriculture is done by women; in conservation, women are the ones making efforts to conserve the native seeds; in animal husbandry; in food processing; in marketing; in selling food at the local level; and as consumers.

    In Africa, it’s said that land belongs to men as the heads of household. If women can’t access land, don’t have control of that land, or don’t own land, there is a problem. We are campaigning for women to have land ownership, and trying to raise this consciousness among men.

    At the national level in Senegal, there’s a new law in effect that states that all citizens have the right to own land. But in practice, we still have the tradition. These women, most of whom are illiterate and rural, are socialized to believe that this longstanding culture can’t be changed. Our job is to [help them] understand they have the same rights as men, and that women owning land contributes to the well-being of the family and assures that they are fed.

    At the local level, some women have risen up and demanded that land be put in their names, and now they are land-owners. Women’s associations have acquired blocks of land of up to one or two hectares, but frankly, there’s not much they can produce on that. To develop agriculture we need to cultivate larger plots or install irrigation, but this isn’t permitted because women don’t have a say in land use. There is idle land available and not enough men to work it all, yet they don’t want to turn it over to women. So the effort of raising awareness and advocacy goes on.

    Agroecology, Sacred Seeds, and Food Sovereignty

    Women peasant organizations are leading the movement for seed and food sovereignty. We should eat what we produce and produce what we eat.

    Agroecology protects all living things and treats nature as sacred. Our seeds are ancient, and each is tied to a certain place. The traditional practice of seed selection preserves the environment and sustains biodiversity, while using our resources which are affordable and accessible. These seeds don’t need any modification.

    We are seeing new diseases due to the diet arising from everything that is imported, and as a result of underestimating the value of traditional dishes of grains and vegetables.

    Though many have gone to chemical agriculture, our movement has identified several traditional practices that we’re sharing with our sisters and brothers. We are the Solution organizes workshops, forums, and community radio broadcasts to bring our message down to the popular, rural level and inform the grassroots about the advantages of traditional agroecological or peasant agriculture.

    In Casamance [a region of Senegal], We Are the Solution has established a platform of 100 grassroots associations. We now have a model farm field and a store for marketing our family farm products from various kinds of production and hand-tool farming. The store is there to help us promote ecologically produced products produced by women. We are also trying to organize a forum on local consumption.

    Overall, women are taking leadership roles in the countries in which We Are the Solution is active, promoting agroecology and seed and food sovereignty as the only viable system for the long-term. This way we can have healthy lives and protect the environment.

    This is the first article in a 7-part series which features interviews with grassroots African leaders working for seed and food sovereignty, the decolonization of Africa's food system, and the preservation of traditional farming practices. This series is made possible with support from New Field Foundation and Grassroots International. Many thank to Stephen Bartlett for translation of the interview.

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    Source: Maplecroft
    Country: Algeria, Benin, Chad, Libya, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Togo

    Terrorism presents an increasing risk to business operations across Niger. The Mali-based Movement for Oneness and Jihad in West Africa (MUJAO) militant group and regional terrorist organisation al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) continue to pose a threat in the north and west of the country. While foreign interests are likely to continue to constitute a primary target for jihadist groups in Niger, the capacity of these groups has been severely weakened by the French military presence in the Sahel. Meanwhile, the activities of Islamist militant group Boko Haram in north-eastern Nigeria pose an increasing threat to the stability of southern Niger. Indeed, Niger has become an increasingly popular target for attacks by the group since the country committed troops to a regional force fighting Boko Haram in Nigeria in February 2015. However, the launch of the 8,700 strong Multinational Joint Task Force (MNJTF) is likely to reduce the risk posed by Boko Haram in the long-term.

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    Source: World Bank
    Country: Burkina Faso, Chad, Côte d'Ivoire, Mali, Mauritania, Niger

    Lancement du projet régional

    « Autonomisation des femmes et dividende démographique au Sahel »

    Niamey, 4 novembre 2015. Le « Projet régional d’Autonomisation des femmes et de dividende démographique au Sahel (SWEDD) » a été officiellement lancé le 2 novembre 2015, sous le haut patronage de son Excellence, Monsieur Brigi Rafini, Premier Ministre du Niger, au Palais des Congrès de Niamey.

    Le Projet régional d’autonomisation des femmes et le dividende démographique au Sahel procède d’une réponse conjointe des Nations Unies et du Groupe de la Banque mondiale (BM) à l’appel lancé par les Présidents de six pays du Sahel, Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Mali, Mauritanie, Niger et Tchad.

    Comme l’a indiqué M. Rafini, le temps d’agir en faveur de la population du Sahel pour renverser la tendance et relever les défis est arrivé. Car, « au-delà du discours, il y a ce désir intense de joindre l’acte à la parole », a-t-il souligné, assurant par la même occasion que ce projet aura des résultats positifs pour la région.

    Se succédant à la tribune, les ministres du Burkina Faso, du Mali, de la Mauritanie, du Niger, du Tchad et la représentante du Gouvernement ivoirien, ont tous évoqué la situation difficile du Sahel.

    Ils ont rappelé l’opportunité de développement qu’offre la mise en œuvre d’un tel projet au profit des populations.

    «C’est un signal fort pour améliorer la santé des mères et des enfants», a fait savoir le Directeur général adjoint de l’Organisation ouest-africaine de la santé (OOAS), Dr Laurent Assogba.

    «L'engagement des équipes des gouvernements des six pays impliqués dans le projet relatif à l'autonomisation des femmes et de dividende démographique au Sahel est remarquable. Ils reconnaissent que son succès dépend non seulement de la direction des ministères de la Santé et de la Population, mais aussi la participation active des ministères de l'Education, de l'Emploi, de la Jeunesse, de la Communication, des Affaires sociales et de la Promotion des femmes », a dit Soji Adeyi, Directeur Santé, Nutrition et Population à la Banque mondiale.

    «La Banque mondiale est fière d'appuyer cette approche multisectorielle, multipartenaire, ambitieuse et unique pour améliorer l'autonomisation des femmes et des filles et leur accès aux services de santé. Cela aidera à créer plus d'opportunités économiques et de prospérité pour les femmes, les filles et leurs familles », a poursuivi M. Adeyi.

    Le Directeur régional de l’UNFPA, le Fonds des Nations Unies pour la population, pour l’Afrique de l’Ouest et du Centre, M. Mabingué Ngom, a indiqué que le Fonds «réitère sa satisfaction et sa profonde gratitude à l’endroit des Chefs

    d’Etat des pays concernés pour leur engagement fort et leur appui politique conséquent à la mise en œuvre de ce projet qui, en n’en point douter, contribuera à l’amélioration des conditions de vies des femmes, des enfants, des jeunes et des adolescents dans pays respectifs».

    C’est pourquoi M. Ngom s’est dit convaincu que cela contribuera de façon efficace «à la mise en œuvre et à la réalisation de l’agenda 2030 pour le développement durable et surtout de l’agenda 2063 de l’Union africaine en phase avec ses six objectifs qui consistent à bâtir un continent où le potentiel des femmes et des jeunes est réalisé». «Nous y parviendrons par l’action, notre action collective», a conclu M. Ngom.

    Le lancement a été suivi par la mise en place du Comité de pilotage du projet, présidé par le Niger, et de quatre jours d’atelier durant lesquels les experts des pays concernés et ceux de l’OOAS, de la Banque mondiale et de l’UNFPA échangeront sur les procédures et modalités pratiques de mise en œuvre immédiate du SWEDD.

    Conçu grâce à un partenariat avec l’OOAS, le Comité permanent inter-Etats de lutte contre la sécheresse dans le Sahel (CILSS), le Centre d'études et de recherche sur la population pour le développement (CERPOD) et la Fondation Bill et Melinda Gates, le SWEDD sera mis en œuvre avec l’assistance technique de l’UNFPA et le financement de la Banque mondiale pour un montant de 205 millions de dollars US sur une période de quatre ans.

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    Source: UN High Commissioner for Refugees
    Country: Mali, Niger


    In February 2013, Mangaize camp received refugees who were relocated from Banibangou and Chinegodar spontaneous sites situated at the border the Malian border. The camp has a capacity to host 10,000 people. In April 2013, UNHCR and WFP launched the Cash Voucher programme, which allows refugees to purchase their own food in local markets instead of receiving food in-kind.

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    Source: UN High Commissioner for Refugees
    Country: Mali, Niger


    The refugee hosting area (nomadic area) is a new concept developed by UNHCR with local authorities and communities in an attempt to adapt to the lifestyle of nomadic refugees. It differs from the traditional set-up of a refugee camp and allows refugees to settle freely in a vast pasture area with their livestock. The first "hosting area" was opened in Intekan in April 2013 with the successful relocation of nearly 8,000 people and their animals to the area. Previously, the refugees lived in spontaneous sites located at the border (Agando and Chinwaren). The second hosting area of Tazalite was opened in July 2013

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    Source: UN High Commissioner for Refugees
    Country: Mali, Niger


    In March 2012, Abala camp received refugees who were moved from spontaneous sites (Chinegodrar, Miel, Tigizefan, Kizamwe and others who settled in Abala town) situated at the Malian border. The camp has a capacity to host 10,000 people. In April 2013, UNHCR Niger launched the Gas project, to provide alternative domestic energy to refugee households.

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