More money and less hunger the right mix of mutual focus and action by all actors in AU Member States towards CAADP goal year, 2025

Latest two-year continental results on agriculture development shows only one member state is on track, 19 are progressing well and the rest are either not on track or didn’t report

February 4, 2022. Only one AU member state - Rwanda- is on track to achieve goals as set out in the seven Malabo Declaration commitments in 2014 according to the just released Comprehensive African Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) 3rd Biennial Review (BR) Report adopted by the Heads of State and Government in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The report further shows that only two other countries – Tanzania and Zimbabwe- joined Rwanda in scoring highly on the recommitment to the principles and values of the CAADP process. What does this mean for the continent and its goals of ending hunger and halving poverty by 2025?

The 3rd BR report builds on the two previous reports by using 46 indicators to track the performance of the continent against the seven Malabo Commitments and its targets. Despite the progresses recorded in some of the commitment areas in the last two cycles, the continent failed to achieve any of the seven Malabo commitments as whole. And although a third of the 51 member states are progressing well, all member states scored especially poorly when it came to commitments number two and three - Enhancing Investment Finance in Agriculture and Ending Hunger by 2025.

Four countries -Egypt, Eswatini, Seychelles, and Zambia- are the only ones on track to achieve the commitment to Enhance Investment Finance in Agriculture, while Kenya stands alone in its achievement of the commitment on Ending Hunger by 2025, measured against key metrics including the use of fertilizer, access to agriculture inputs and irrigation. This should have come as no surprise as during the 16th CAADP Partnership Platform meeting in November 2020, Dr. Ousmane Badiane of Akademiya2063 noted that there was actually a decline in budgetary allocation by governments on the continent to Agriculture, and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN (FAO) presented extensive findings on increased nutrition and hunger that were aggravated by the COVID-19 pandemic. The pandemic mainly disrupted access to inputs, food production, markets, distribution, and transportation.

One way to reverse these two trends is the ongoing efforts by AUC and partners to expedite the ongoing CAADP domestication efforts by supporting countries and Regional Economic Communities (RECs) to develop National Agricultural Investment Plans (NAIPs) and Regional Agricultural Investment Plans (RAIPs). NAIPs and RAIPs are the blueprint investment documents within CAADP, and which ought to capture investment commitments by public sector, private sector, Non-State, and development actors. In addition, heightened conducive environments for private sector and donor investments will be essential to supporting increased productivity, resilience to climate change and variability, food security and livelihoods in the agricultural sector and the agri-food system in line with the UN Food Systems Summit’s national dialogues.

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Overall, as part of ongoing renewed communication and advocacy efforts, there should conscious inclusion of all actors – especially the primary producer, the farmer- in policy processes and sector investment decisions. In addition, urgent steps must also be taken to demystify mutual accountability and the use of evidence on agriculture development for everyday decision-making by civil society organizations, including groups of women and youth, the private sector, academia, African multilateral institutions, funding and investment organizations.

The 3rd BR Report was prepared in an inclusive manner under the leadership of the African union and the AUDA-NEPAD working closely with the Regional Economic communities (RECs) and their constituent Member States, financial and technical partners. For more information, see the full report: [link to the BRR3 on the AU website] or visit the visualized results via the AU BR Toolkit : https://au.int/en/caadp/toolkit