The Livestock sector in Africa exhibits lack of integrated information management processes. This limits the provision of real-time livestock information and knowledge to facilitate decision making among livestock actors at regional and continental level. These observations led over 240 delegates from 43 African countries to publish a communique on Thursday 8th August 2019, in Cairo, Egypt, that among other common interventions identified the need for efficient Information Systems Management as a catalyst to the sustainable intensification of Regional Livestock Value Chains in Africa. The various stakeholders identified the need for more integrated information sharing across the RLVCs through the development of information modules specifically on: Poultry (meat and eggs) for Central Africa; Dairy for East Africa; Meat and live animals for IGAD; Dairy for North Africa; Meat and live animals for Southern Africa; and Poultry for West Africa.
Proceeding the Cairo meeting, AU-IBAR once again convened 160 stakeholders from 50 African countries at a Systemic Capacity Building Continental Workshop: Information Systems, Knowledge Management, and Technology. The consultative workshop was held in Nairobi, Kenya held from 3-7 February, 2020. The workshop built upon agreed intervention areas identified during the Stakeholder’s Stocktaking Workshop, to improve the information need capacity of member countries across RLVCs. The workshop attendees comprised livestock value chain actors such as extension agents, Departments of Livestock, and policy makers who were in a position to affect the resources, market orientation and competitive advantage of smallholders, consequently impacting financial performance of the value chain.
Speaking during the official opening of the workshop, AU-IBAR’s Executive Director, Prof. Ahmed El-Sawalhy highlighted existing gaps in Sub-Saharan Africa in terms of current data on livestock. He noted that as a result, most livestock value chain actors lacked adequate quality information to support decision making at regional level. Consequently, a key intervention of the work attendees involved identifying critical data content for the selected priority Regional Livestock Value Chains.
The Systemic Capacity Building Continental Consultative Workshop was framed within the broader continental frameworks such as the Livestock Development Strategy for Africa (LiDeSA) that takes a two-pronged approach providing a comprehensive agenda to drive livestock sector economic contribution (including intra and inter-regional trade and promotion of sustainable livelihoods). Additionally, the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP), the 2014 Malabo Declaration, and the AU Agenda provided the justification for the consultative workshop. The Malabo Declaration precisely renewed the commitments to the CAADP made in 2003, broadened the themes of the workshop and provided targets to be achieved by 2025: Some of the targets that were relevant to the Systemic Capacity Building Continental Consultative Workshop include: The exploitation of regional complementarities and cooperation to boost growth; The use of partnerships and alliances including farmers, agribusiness and civil society; Supply of appropriate knowledge, information, and skills to users; and to promote and strengthen platforms for multi-actor interactions.
The African Union-Interafrican Bureau for Animal Resources (AU-IBAR) is implementing a 5-year project on “Sustainable Development of Livestock for Livelihoods in Africa - Live2Africa”, The project pioneers a coherent continental programme approach to build systemic capacity in seven livestock components, that include: Investment in Value Chains, Animal Health; Animal Production, Productivity and Ecosystem Management; Resilience Building; Technology adoption in the Value Chains to inputs, services and markets; and strengthening institutional capacities.
AU-IBAR in collaboration with the Southern African Development Community (SADC) conducted a consultative stakeholder meeting at the Berjaya Beau Vallon Bay Resort in Victoria, Seychelles from 9th to 11th of March 2020 to refine the implementation modalities of catalytic actions for the prioritised Red meat and live animals Regional Livestock Value Chain (RLVC).
The meeting was attended by 31 participants from 14 SADC Member States- Botswana, Comoros, Democratic Republic of Congo, Eswatini, Lesotho, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, Seychelles, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe; tertiary institutions (Stellenbosch University, University of Zambia, University of Zimbabwe); the International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT), representatives of the red meat and live animals industry – the Lesotho Abattoir and the National Emergent Red Meat Producers' Organisation (NERPO) and staff from AU-IBAR.
The overall objective of the workshop was to build consensus on modalities including, prioritised intervention and action areas, develop work plans and time-frames, budget and targets for implementation of defined catalytic actions under the SADC Priority Regional Livestock Value Chain of the red meat and live animals.
Financial exclusion is still a great need for the majority of Africa’s women in livestock keeping. This is exemplified by the focus on the assets that are far more accessible to men. As a means of contributing towards financial inclusion, AU-IBAR, under the Live2Africa Project, with funding from the European Union (EU), and in collaboration with the Africa Women Agribusiness Network (AWAN) brought together 64 continental, regional and national executives from the African Women in Animal Resources Farming and Agribusiness Network (AWARFA-N) at a capacity building workshop. The workshop themed "The Only Measures are Profit and Growth" was held on 27th – 29th November, 2019 in Naivasha, Kenya. The focus of the workshop was on resourcing, negotiating and utilizing innovative investment finance and insurance.
Speaking during the official opening of the capacity building workshop, AU-IBAR’s Director, mentioned that the workshop provided a strengthened and continuous process of capacity building for African Women AGRIBUSINESSES that AU-IBAR and AWAN hoped to embark on. Prof. Ahmed Elsawalhy stressed the importance of moving away from aid-related support to supporting agribusiness to ensure functional businesses, which as he further noted is a key focus of the Live2Africa Project.
He stated: "the most important remark came from our donor the European Union: support has moved from purely aid to supporting business. This is now the model, to ensure ownership, growth and sustainability. This is where the EU and other donors, who have had a long tradition of support to empowering women on the African continent are moving."
Ms. Beatrice Gakuba, Executive Director AWAN-Afrika reminded participants of the need to take advantage of existing continental instruments promoting agribusiness. She noted that the Africa Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) agreement provides an opportunity for women to strengthen their trade practices through a hassle-free accelerated intra-African trade through a common voice in trade discussions. She emphasised that "the Africa We Want" will not happen if Africa’s women are not empowered.
- One Voice to Catalyse Equitable Growth of the Livestock Sector through the harmonisation of key Livestock Policies
- Stocktaking Exercise to Define Intervention Areas along Selected Priority Livestock Value Chains
- AU-IBAR Convenes 10th Panafrican CVOs/OIE Delegates Meeting on Africa's Coordinated Position on Animal Health Standards
- AU - IBAR Provides Support for African Union Member States to Develop and Validate their National Strategies and 5 Year Action Plans for the Control and Eradication of Peste de Petits Ruminants (PPR)