Regional approaches to food security in Africa: Early lessons from the IGAD Regional CAADP process

from European Centre for Development Policy Management
Published on 29 Oct 2012 View Original

Executive Summary

In 2003 the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) was established by the assembly of the African Union (AU) aiming to raise agricultural productivity by at least 6% per year and increasing public investment in agriculture to 10% of national budgets per year. After an initial phase focused primarily on interventions at the national level, there is growing awareness on the need to work more on the regional dimensions of the CAADP. In this context, the European Centre for Development Policy Management (ECDPM) has undertaken policy-oriented analysis and stakeholder consultations on regional CAADP processes - and issues at stake - as well as on its linkages with the broader regional integration dynamics, in various African regions. This paper focuses on the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), with the objective to stimulate further discussions among involved stakeholders, to contribute to the consultative processes around the development and implementation of CAADP at regional level, as well as to contribute to lessons-sharing across Africa on regional approaches to food security.

IGAD Regional CAADP compact: parallel initiatives, one goal

Between 2010 and 2011, parts of the Horn of Africa experienced some of their worst droughts in history. This prompted Heads of State and Government from IGAD and the East African Community (EAC) to come together to endorse a more preventative, regional and holistic approach towards ending drought emergencies in the region. The Summit gave birth to the IGAD Drought Disaster Resilience and Sustainability Initiative (IDDRSI) and a number of related initiatives aimed at operationalizing the drought resilience agenda in the region’s Arid and Semi-Arid Lands (ASAL). This includes the Common Programming Frameworks (CPF) to guide national interventions, a Regional Programming Framework (RPF), an IGAD regional CAADP process and an IDDRSI Strategic Plan, all geared, in one way or the other, towards addressing regional aspects of the resilience effort. An IDDRSI Regional Platform is also being established to coordinate and mobilize resources around all the processes. These initiatives are currently being developed simultaneously and are all ‘work-in-progress’. While perceptions around the initiatives are still evolving, most stakeholders appear to have differing views on the value of each initiative, neither are they clear about how these parallel initiatives can complement each other.

National-Regional nexus: operationalizing the principle of subsidiarity

There is a high degree of consensus among various stakeholders that regional action is very important for reducing the vulnerability of the ASAL areas to drought and food insecurity. In this sense, the consensus strongly leans toward adopting a long-term, resilience-focused regional approach. The regional IGAD compact is expected to build on and complement the national CAADP compacts, where they exist, and national agriculture strategies/ policies of other member states, which have not yet developed CAADP compacts. During the process of national consultations for the regional compact, it emerged that the national-regional nexus is not always well thought through by most countries. Being already involved in the other processes that focus more on country challenges, the sense of momentum around the regional CAADP does not appear to be fully shared by technical ministries at the country level. In addition, there is the challenge of working out ways to operationalize the principle of subsidiarity. Different stakeholders have different ideas on what regional CAADP means, which could make operationalizing issues of complementarity and subsidiarity between regional and national processes a likely challenge.