Pharmaceutical industry: how to respond to health-related challenges in Africa?

The pharmaceutical market in Africa is one of the fastest growing in the world and one of the most dynamic high potential growth and economic drivers in Africa; and is expected to reach $52-60 billion by 2020. Local production represents a huge potential to stimulate economic and industrial growth on the continent, while providing a local, secure and sustainable response to Africa’s significant health needs.

The growth of the pharmaceutical industry in Africa was at the heart of the Africa Pharma Conference, organized last month in Johannesburg by AUDA-NEPAD. Indeed, this meeting focused on best practices, progress and the road ahead. Significantly the Conference highlighted the huge market potential, with the attendant benefits of driving economic development and ensuring pharmaceutical security for the continent. In this regard the conference came up with a set of clear recommendations for the continental leadership that are required for local industry to realise its huge potential. The message of the conference was real and unambiguous. African markets are not destined to cannot remain prey to traffickers of expired or substandard medicines, or a competitive ground for foreign firms alone. The reducing international donor commitments, and recent supply shocks provide ample evidence for why it is time Africa took its destiny into its hands.

“The Africa of the future will not depend on donors for its medicine needs, but on its own internal resources”

Strong political will has already enabled North Africa to set an example. Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia and Egypt cover 60% of their essential medicines needs and now export the medicines they produce including to the highly regulated markets of the west. South Africa has also led the way, developing its local production of cheap generics and creating in Aspen, a top ten global generics player.

Ghana, Côte d’Ivoire, Kenya, Nigeria, Tanzania… All these countries are developing local production capacities, with Nigeria for example having over one hundred and fifty local manufacturers. Out of 55 countries, Africa has 37 countries with national pharmaceutical industries. It is also worth noting the efforts made by States to establish health insurance systems. From Benin to Tunisia, through Djibouti, Côte d’Ivoire, Ethiopia and Rwanda, often cited as examples, all these insurance schemes will increase access to medicines.

Much remains to be done, however, across a continent that carries 25% of the global burden of disease, although it represents only 16% of the world’s population. Malaria alone represents a huge public health challenge. It is the deadliest disease in Africa, ahead of tuberculosis and HIV/AIDS. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), sub-Saharan Africa accounts for 90% of the 212 million malaria cases recorded in 2015, and 92% of the deaths caused by this pandemic in the same year.

“Bad for business”, as Akinwumi Adesina, President of the African Development Bank (AfDB), so aptly puts it, and malaria costs Africa $12 billion a year, or 5% or 6% of GDP. Between 70% and 80% of the medicines consumed in Africa are imported, particularly from India and China. Hence the need to invest in local industries to supply a growing market, driven by the demographic boom, and the significant economic progress- the Africa of the future will not depend on donors for its medicine needs, but on its own internal resources. Consequently, it should also be prepared to procure from Africa based companies to create a virtuous cycle of economic development and good health.

Partnerships, including with the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), the World Health Organization (WHO) and UNAIDS, are essential. Even if the most important partner, in the end, is none other than the African citizen who does not have access to medicines. It is necessary to restore his confidence in local, and not only imported products that are not only accessible, but whose quality is adequately assured by the regulatory authorities.

For this reason, AUDA-NEPAD has published a “model law” on the regulation of medical products to inspire States that do not have or wish to supplement their national pharmaceutical laws. The objective is to establish a national regulatory authority, which can work in tandem with the soon to be established African Medicines Agency (AMA), launched in 2018 to harmonize existing regulations and improve access to safe products.

The Pharmaceutical Manufacturing Plan for Africa (PMPA), led since 2007 by the African Union and partners including UNIDO, UNAIDS, and WHO, also aims to harmonize national policies. This is what the countries of the Central African Economic and Monetary Community (CEMAC) undertook in 2013 to create a single market for medicines. A concrete progress towards sub-regional integration, that deserves to be welcomed. The time for Africa to take its destiny in its own hands. That time is now!


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My message at the SOAS African Development Forum ‏ 2019

Good morning, everyone,

Thank you for this invitation, which honours me. It is always a great pleasure for me to return to university, where I spent many of the best years of my life either learning or giving back what I had been taught.

Today, I come to you as a development practitioner.

In particular, I would like to speak about the challenges facing the development of our continent, particularly from the perspective of “”, the theme of this year’s Forum, which must be understood in a broader sense.

I would like to start with the extraordinary events that have marked African politics this week. I am thinking in particular of the Algerian situation. President Bouteflika’s decision is remarkable in many respects.

This decision should be welcomed and I wish the Algerian people the best possible outcome, as they have demonstrated their full political maturity during these demonstrations. We know the crucial role that students have played in these peaceful protests.

For the past two or three years, I have been saying that 90% of the African Heads of State we know today will no longer be here in ten years’ time. My forecast is more palatable with each election, or each renewal of the political offer. And there have been many of them in Africa in recent years.

Democracy will keep progressing at the pace of youth. By definition, future transitions bring renewal, but they can also be sources of instability, insecurity…

These changes are taking place at a time when Africa is experiencing a pivotal period in its globalization. The world is awakening to the importance of our continent, which will be home to one in four human in 2050, just 30 years from now. The theories of “Africa rising” have given way to a new formula, the “New scramble for Africa”.

This new formula seems more accurate than the previous one. In any case, it allows us to better reflect the original path that a sovereign Africa can take, free of its choices and courted by foreign powers and companies from all over the world.

Let me emphasize five general principles that combine economics and politics and that I believe are some of the keys to ensuring that the tremendous changes facing Africa go down well.

To be accepted by the peoples, it is my intimate conviction that the “technocratic” reforms we must undertake should reflect a political vision shared by as many people as possible, in this case the youth of our countries.

This is particularly true in the context of our demographic challenge and keeping in mind the hundreds of millions of young Africans who will reach working age in the next 15 years.

First, I would like to address the issue of the co-production of public policies as the basis for all major decisions that will impact populations. All recent events show how much the question is not so much which elegant technical solution to choose as which one will win the support of the populations.

Institutional and legislative systems in Africa suffer from a major and poorly studied weakness: the lack of public consultation. Citizens are called upon to vote every five years on slogans rather than programmes whose details are, in any case, rarely revealed to them.

The aim is not to establish a hypothetical “direct democracy”, but to increase the forms and channels of citizen participation in public life in Africa. This would be a kind of “institutional syncretism”, with regard to the definition and implementation of public policies.

To do this, we must draw on our tradition and return to the sources of the palaver tree or the indaba. South Africa has invented truth and reconciliation commissions, Rwanda has invented “gacaca” courts… We have the ability to increase public involvement and adherence in the major decisions that affect us.

It is about creating spaces in which people are informed, consulted and involved in the selection and implementation of the main projects that are supposed to ensure and promote their well-being – this is the goal, after all, of democracy.

We need to formulate our diagnosis in our own terms. It is the lack of a proper diagnosis that has too often been the main cause for the failure of development policies attempted throughout Africa – and the resulting lack of ownership.

How can we make a relevant diagnosis if we are not able to listen to our populations?

Secondly, we must recognize that the optimal responses to our major challenges lie at the regional and national levels, following an integrated approach. African States must learn to work together within the major regions, which in turn should be able to integrate them.

I note with optimism that the Ethiopian Prime Minister’s visit to Kenya has made it possible to relaunch the idea of LAPSSET, a first-rate regional corridor project that should make it possible to open up an immense region and increase trade between these two great East African nations.

Regional cooperation is not based on a romantic vision of the continent or an ignorance of economic realities. On the contrary, it is precisely because of these economic realities that we must defend the virtues of consultation.

Beyond the obvious benefits of infrastructure sharing, regional cooperation is essential to combat or strengthen other aspects of African development.

This applies to the negotiation of external trade agreements, the establishment of regional stock exchanges (East Africa is leading the way with the agricultural segment of the Kigali Stock Exchange), common rules for different professions, the accreditation of diplomas, the harmonization of qualifications, etc.

In addition to the benefits of economies of scale resulting from the pooling of training efforts, the mutual recognition, at the regional level, of diplomas obtained in African countries has the advantage of better anchoring populations, encouraging geographical mobility, and therefore competition, and, consequently, remuneration levels.

These are just a few examples.

Third, we must think about how private interests can profitably participate in new challenges. I am thinking in particular of the way in which agri-food companies, with the resources they have, can really participate in the professionalization and emergence of a class of agri-entrepreneurs in Africa.

Africa, with nearly 60% of its population still rural, offers the opportunity to experiment with new methods. This remains a challenge and a challenge for many of you, but I believe that some international actors in the agri-food sector are becoming aware of the need to change their production model and see Africa as an opportunity to develop original models in agreement with the populations.

The development of a quality agri-food industry will have beneficial spillover effects on key sectors of the economy. Indeed, beyond production, the whole sector would benefit – processing industries, harvesters, producers and distributors, would be boosted by a better organisation of the food sector.

Fourthly, I believe in the wider use of new technologies to identify our citizens and to bring a political identity to as many people as possible. Not only for better statistical management or demographic representativeness, but also to grant access to social services (payments of aid from the State) through a dedicated account.

This financial identity, whose development will accelerate with a constantly increasing rate of smartphone equipment, will have unimaginable effects on the informal sector.

It should be recalled that the informal sector is an essential component of most sub-Saharan economies, where its contribution to GDP ranges from 25% to 65% and where it represents between 30% and 90% of non-agricultural employment.

If the informal sector were organized more efficiently, it could greatly improve the lot of hundreds of millions of our fellow citizens. So far, the informal sector has not diminished in importance with economic growth. On the contrary, it has tended to grow faster than the rest of the economy.

New technologies offer us an opportunity to create the link between two almost parallel economic worlds, the formal and the informal. The combination of the living forces of the informal sector with the almost organic capacity of new technologies to connect and organize a new economic interaction can trigger the economic take-off of our continent.

Finally, allow me to say a few words on the more general question of aid. Aid is by definition transitional, to help overcome a difficult period. When it demonstrates to private capital that investment is profitable, it has finished playing its role.

I think that the public assistance as we know it, the one that comes from developed countries to countries of the “South”, will no longer exist in ten years’ time. This public aid is nowadays directed less and less towards health or education… and more and more towards security and migration issues. This is no longer the classic form of aid we tend to imagine.

Another sign of this “New Scramble for Africa” is that all recent G7 and G20 meetings highlight the role of the private sector, European, American and Japanese, in development projects and in the form of public-private partnerships. Africa must realize that aid is over. Donors, who were at the centre of development policies twenty years ago, are no longer there.

Let us realize that this aid is much less, at least twice as less as what the continent receives in remittances from the diaspora. If we compare aid flows, $25 billion, with illicit financial flows, more than $50 billion according to the ECA, we realize that, if we did our work through better tax, customs and customs management systems, we would not need this assistance. Similarly, if we succeed in being serious about our internal resource mobilization mechanisms…

It is in this spirit that the founding fathers of NEPAD, and more broadly of the entire pan-African institutional architecture, a generation which, with Mr. Bouteflika’s decision, has now finished giving way to the next one, is to ensure that Africa speaks with one voice to all its partners, to give it a more influential voice in the debates.

With the importance we are gaining in the concert of nations, I am indeed rather optimistic about the future of our continent.

Thank you again for giving me the opportunity to share these few thoughts with you. I hope that they will be useful to you in your future professional and personal choices.


Let’s give young people a voice to achieve the Africa we want

The Africa of tomorrow will be made up of the dreams of today’s children. What do they want? What sources of inspiration could public policies draw from their ideas? The essay contest on “The Africa We Want”, launched this year by the NEPAD agency, aims precisely to tap into this source of creative energy. Young Africans have until 28 February to write their ideas and formulate their proposals, which should make it possible to have a positive impact on societies, in line with the imperative for transformation set out in the African Union’s Agenda 2063. The winners will be announced at a ceremony in April in Johannesburg, South Africa.

The rise of African youth, as we know, provides grounds for concern in both the North and the South. The number of 15-24 year olds will increase from 327 to 531 million between 2010 and 2065, according to the UN projections. This figure alone represents both a promise and challenges. Europe fears major waves of migration from the continent. For their part, African leaders are well aware that the vast majority of young people simply dream of a decent life at home. Their massive entry into the labour market therefore makes development and access to employment more urgent than ever. If Africa wants to benefit from its demographic dividend, consulting its youth is an essential first step.

Already, the 15-25 age group is becoming increasingly vocal, and not only in the citizens’ movements that are spreading across the continent. A few examples, chosen from thousands of others, attest to this. Activist Chris Chukwu is fighting corruption in Nigeria as part of the Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI) network. Aminata Namasia Bazego, 25, has just entered the Parliament of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), where she is the youngest member of parliament. Arthur Zang, a Cameroonian engineer, invented the Cardiopad in 2014, at the age of 24. This touch pad for medical use has been talked about all over the world. It allows cardiologists, too few in Cameroon, to follow their patients from a distance.

Ancillar Mangena, a Zimbabwean journalist, has already won many awards even though she is less than thirty. For Forbes Africa magazine, she identified the most dynamic Africans under 30 years of age in the business, technology and arts sectors. The result of her survey is a list of 90 role models, success stories that the journalist describes as the “billionaires of tomorrow”. It is to initiate and sustain such virtuous cycles that we must immediately transform attitudes about our youth. Because young people are still too often considered as “little ones” without a voice. The time has come to listen to them. Because the current, rapid changes are already dependent on their generation.

WEST AFRICA BRIEF: Ibrahim Mayaki becomes new SWAC President

The Sahel and West Africa Club’s governing board, also called the Strategy and Policy Group (SPG), convened on 18-19 June 2018 for an important discussion of SWAC’s future work priorities. SWAC Members appointed Dr Ibrahim Assane Mayaki, current Chief Executive Officer of NEPAD, as SWAC President. He will assume this function as of 1 January 2019. The SPG was an opportunity for Members and partners to honour current President, François-Xavier de Donnea for his outstanding commitment to the Club for nearly a decade. Members and partners also discussed work priorities for 2019-20. They discussed a draft work programme, which was elaborated based on an inclusive consultation process, reflecting Members’ key priorities and building on current activities and achievements.

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Fast-tracking the implementation of Africa’s Development Agenda

Johannesburg, South Africa, January 25, 2018 – NEPAD Agency, now with a footprint in 52 of the 55 African Union Member States, adopted a results-based approach and aligned its interventions to the First Ten Year Implementation Plan of Agenda 2063 –  African Union’s long-term vision and strategic framework for socio-economic transformation of the continent. Accordingly, the 2017 Annual Report that the Agency has released is results based, giving an account of the NEPAD Agency’s contribution to Agenda 2063.

The results of the NEPAD Agency’s contribution to Agenda 2063 for the year 2017 are presented at continental, regional and national levels. To this end, the 2017 report provides some insights into the possible strategic impact areas of the transformed Agency, namely: Wealth Creation, Shared Prosperity, Transformative Capacities and Sustainable Environment.

At continental level, the Agency’s 2017 results in the area of revolution and entrepreneurship include the application of gene drives for eliminating malaria; the application of drone technology for agriculture and food security; and the promotion of micro-grids for expanding Africa’s access to energy. In the area of sustainability and resilience capacity, results include contribution to Africa’s unified position in global conventions on climate change and environmental resilience that was strengthened.

With regards improved health and nutrition services, some of the achievements include a draft treaty for establishing the African Medicines Agency that was prepared to ensure the supply of safe and effective medicines in Africa. Results towards transformed agriculture and food systems include the blueprint that was produced to implement rural development policies in Africa, as well as the Inaugural Biennial Report, which highlights progress made on commitments enshrined in the Malabo Declaration.

The year 2017 marks the end of the strategic plan cycle that spans 2014 to 2017. It also heralds the medium term development plan, 2018 – 2023, aligned to Agenda 2063’s First Ten Year Implementation Plan. The annual report also comes at a time when preparations are concluding for transforming the NEPAD Agency into the African Union Development Agency, with greater scope for action and capacity.

2017 PIDA Week convened in Namibia

The 2017 Programme for Infrastructure Development in Africa (PIDA) Week was held from 10 to 14 December in Swakopmund, Namibia under the theme “Enhancing Trade and Economic Transformation through Regional Infrastructure Development”.

Organized by the African Union Commission (AUC), the NEPAD Planning and Coordinating Agency (NPCA), the African Development Bank (AfDB) and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) in collaboration with the Namibian Government and the Southern African Development Community (SADC), PIDA Week aims to build on the achievements of the 2015 and 2016 meetings in Abidjan and the momentum created in the previous two events to continue to engage stakeholders on the effective delivery of infrastructure on the continent.

Speaking ahead of the meeting, H.E. Dr Amani Abou-Zeid, Commissioner for Infrastructure and Energy at the African Union Commission said that about 500 delegates were expected in Walvis Bay to discuss how to create synergies and mobilise support in the implementation of African Union’s Agenda 2063 infrastructure projects in Africa, with a particular emphasis on PIDA.

“Delegates gathering in Swakopmund for the Third PIDA Week have addressed several important issues, with a view to moving PIDA projects from conception to implementation and pushing Agenda 2063’s infrastructure goals for Africa,” Dr Amani Abou-Zeid stated.

“This event has offered an opportunity for delegates to unpack the enormous growth potential of increasing the visibility of PIDA projects and validating the relevance of corridors and thereby facilitating the continent’s economic transformation, harnessed to the benefit of our people,” the Commissioner added.

On his part, NEPAD Agency’s Chief Executive Officer, Dr Ibrahim Assane Mayaki stated that “Accelerating the development of Africa’s regional infrastructure could be the game changer that will trigger industrialisation and create jobs. It is for this reason that African leaders developed the Programme for Infrastructure Development in Africa (PIDA) in 2012, as the means for socio-economic growth and intra-African trade.”

Khaled Sherif, Vice-President – Regional Development, Integration and Business Delivery reaffirmed the African Development Bank’s strong commitment to infrastructure development in the continent stating that infrastructure promotes trade and creates a conducive environment for investments and business.

He applauded the significant strides made by PIDA implementing partners in promoting trade and economic transformation through regional infrastructure development, adding that the Bank aims to attract more capital into the infrastructure sector by helping governments structure transactions to contribute to the financing of infrastructure.

Vice President Khaled stated that expectations are high that this meeting will provide a fresh impetus towards PIDA implementation. Similarly, he alluded to the fact that “Co-financing and partnerships remain critical towards mobilising more resources for PIDA implementation.”

PIDA Week was inaugurated in 2015 as a platform for PIDA stakeholders and the first two events have been held in Abidjan under the auspices of the African Development Bank. The event will provide a platform for stakeholders to engage in accelerating and synergising their efforts to: (1) accelerate projects preparation and implementation;(2) mobilise adequate financial and technical resources for projects; (3) increase private sector participation in PIDA implementation; and (4) mobilise Member States to integrate the PIDA projects into their national development plans.

Additionally, statutory closed meetings under the Institutional Architecture for Infrastructure Development (IAIDA) and the NEPAD Infrastructure Project Preparation Facility (IPPF) meetings were held during the Week. PIDA Week also focused on accelerating all PIDA Projects with specific emphasis on five selected projects and a site visit to Walvis Bay.

The meeting was attended by various stakeholders including AUC, NPCA, AfDB, and UNECA, Member States, development partners, Financial Institutions, private sector, civil society and members of the media.

Copyright: Uzo Madu

G20 Compact with Africa and the Position of Youths

It was a great pleasure to be interviewed on CNBC Africa about the G20. Thanks to the team, thank you Onyi Sunday.

The G20 Compact with Africa is an initiative that aims to promote private investment and investment in infrastructure. African countries will determine what they want to do to improve conditions for private investment, with whom they want to cooperate, and in what form. This is against the backdrop of a continent whose median age is only 19 years.  What does all this mean?

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Why the solutions to global challenges are found at the pan-African level

At a time when more and more voices are being heard to challenge the European Union (EU), the idea of ​​unity of the Old Continent and especially the functioning of its institutions, the African Union (AU) has just accepted a new member: Morocco.

This demonstrates the attractiveness of the continental organization, which, although not perfect, has to its credit many achievements that are conducive to stability and development. It must be said that the AU was able to renew itself. From the OAU of independence to the AU that we know today – in fact largely inspired by the EU – there has been a real qualitative leap we must welcome.

Today the AU is an essential interlocutor for the international community. Africa is able to speak with one voice in the major international arenas, whether on climate or trade. Unity is strength, as the saying goes. But union, especially when it goes beyond the mere economic framework, is not easy: one sees it in other parts of the world, in the Middle East for example, but also in North America where deep divisions have been growing.

In Africa, on the contrary, the continental unity is now strengthened. It is interesting to note that even when countries are divided, at no time do the new entities envisage leaving the AU. I’m thinking here about the latest example to date, South Sudan. Morocco has clearly understood this, which is back in the ideological lap of the founding fathers of Africa, who, after independence, wanted this African unity because they dreamed of a community of destiny and interests.

Already with NEPAD, or with the African Development Bank (AfDB), the vision of development, projects and commitments are continental. We have succeeded in producing an overall African project, where each country sees its interest and can hope to be part of the general effort. This is true for infrastructures – rail, electricity – but also for the social issue through Agenda 2063, which includes measures over 50 years to stimulate socio-economic transformation across the continent.

A key element of this transformation is to take full advantage of the “demographic dividend” to ensure that economic progress improves growth, social development and the sharing of wealth. This is also the case for health with the “African Health Strategy” and the “Catalytic Framework for the Elimination of AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria in Africa by 2030”, set up by the AU. There is still progress to be made, especially in integration, the free movement of people and goods, but in 15 years progress has been quite extraordinary.

With its values, ambitions and strengths – economic and demographic growth, important natural resources and dynamic youth – Africa today can face the challenges coming from a world in perpetual change by cultivating unity. In the UN, for example, our countries weigh more when they are united. And it is with this unity that we can also open ourselves to the rest of the world. The AU is our home, our safe haven. We can look at other geographical areas, such as the EU, for example, for Morocco and Tunisia, or as the BRICS for South Africa, but in the end we know where we come from. That is our strength. These extensions from Africa to the rest of the world via individual countries, or also via diaspora, is a key strength. It remains to ensure that there is a principle of “diplomatic sharing” or preferential access set up within pan-African bodies.

Our partners are already very active: for example, on the board committee of the AfDB, we find France, the United Kingdom, the United States, Japan and China, among others. These partner countries and friends of Africa therefore participate directly in the projects implemented by the continental bank. This facilitates action and makes the partnership more effective. Our inequalities can also be forces: if Moroccan and South African banks play their role as a capital distributor, this can benefit other countries and their respective private sectors.

Integrating the pan-African perspective into reflection can only benefit the actors in this immense market that has become Africa.


What the preservation of our heritage tells us about our future

Recently, in certain countries of Sahelian Africa such as Burkina Faso and Mali, there has been a renewed interest in the so-called “Nubian vault” architectural technique. Houses built according to this ancestral model, probably coming from the ancient Egyptians, are less costly, because they use the local earth for the bricks, more perennial (about fifty years), better insulated than the iron sheets covered houses, and ecological since they do not use wood. These fresh houses with small and chiselled openings that retain heat on the outside, allow the easy addition of a roof terrace. NGOs have made it the basis for some development projects in response to the lack of decent housing, lack of employment and the challenge of ecological preservation.

This example illustrates a legitimate questioning of some of our States about the accumulation of capital. Should we accumulate physical capital or knowledge? At first sight we naturally answer both. But in this case, what should be prioritized between knowledge that is difficult to measure, which is a bet on the future, and the accumulation of infrastructures and financial capital, more easily quantifiable? I believe that we can lead the two accumulations head on, one helping the other, supporting the other, nourishing it, making it even wealthier.

The example of the Nubian vault shows that it is important to preserve the techniques specific to Africa, to know how to adapt them, but also to defend them as our genuine heritage. The effort must be global: finding funding and partnerships for the development of our continent, but also maintaining control over what we want to do, according to our needs and cultures. The days when we were forced to make laterite tracks rather than paved highways are gone. That is why we must also give ourselves the means to choose and build. And this requires a renewed effort to educate, preserve and transmit the intellectual capital that we have, sometimes without even noticing.

Likewise, without knowledge, how can we maintain the physical capital that we have received as an inheritance, too often fallen into decay? Africa, today more than ever, needs hydraulic engineers, renewable energy specialists, mining engineers and geologists to exploit its immense natural resources. We also need to better protect our inventions. The world observes us – to say that it spies on us would be too strong – and tries in good industrial logic to take over what belongs to us, sometimes legally, sometimes illegally. I think of Ethiopia’s long battle against the American giant Starbucks to recover the appellations of origin of its finest varieties of coffee: Yirgacheffe, Sidamo and Harrar. In this case, David defeated Goliath, and these three names which evoke voluptuous perfumes are now registered Ethiopian trademarks. As a result of this initiative, some 15 million people living in the coffee sector in Ethiopia have seen their incomes increase, while the state has exported more. Ethiopia is today one of the leaders of the continent in the protection of intellectual property.

Like the Nubian vault, coffee is a heritage, both genetic, agricultural and cultural, which we must preserve and develop. We must continue to invest in the production of knowledge. The State, with its public sector, the private sector and citizens, each at their level, must participate in this effort. Let us not doubt that the profits, which seem sometimes impalpable, will eventually bring about a sound and stumbling effect, as shown by these two examples. Celebrating commitments to restore more than 75 million hectares of land across Africa

Johannesburg, May 18 – The African Forest Landscape Restoration Initiative (AFR100) launched a new web platform today – – to celebrate and advance the efforts of 22 African countries that have committed to restore more than 75 million hectares of degraded and deforested land.

The new site, available in English and French, gives visitors unprecedented access to knowledge and information about restoration efforts in the sub-Saharan countries. Africa has the largest restoration opportunity of any continent in the world – more than 700 million hectares of degraded land, or an area the size of Australia. This degraded land can be restored to forests or mosaic landscapes that are a mix of trees and agriculture, providing many benefits.

AFR100 is a country-led partnership to restore degraded and deforested land in Africa. AFR100 and its web platform respond to the African Union mandate to bring 100 million hectares into restoration by 2030. The initiative was launched in 2015 by the NEPAD Secretariat, the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) via GIZWRI, and the World Bank. AFR100 is supported by funds from BMZ and the World Bank and was established as part of the African Resilient Landscapes Initiative, and contributing to the global commitments of the Bonn Challenge and New York Declaration on Forests.

Mamadou Diakhite, AFR100 Secretariat Manager at NEPAD Agency announced the launch of “This website will provide our partners and online visitors with a vast amount of immediate, easy-to-navigate content detailing the exciting restoration work taking place across the continent.

“This includes beautiful photographs and in-depth information prepared by the AFR100 member countries who take pride in their restoration efforts.”

Through AFR100, national governments, public and private sector partners, international development programs and local communities will restore productivity to deforested and degraded landscapes to improve livelihoods.

Wanjira Mathai, co-chair of the Global Restoration Council and chairperson of the Green Belt Movement, said: “The importance of AFR100 to the daily lives of communities across Africa cannot be overestimated.

“I am moved by the countries that have already committed to transforming their landscapes and securing the future for generations to come.”

Sean DeWitt, Director of the Global Restoration Initiative at World Resources Institute (WRI) added: “The site reflects the high level of commitment from member countries of the AFR100 partnership, and will enable partners to share experiences and good practices, as well highlighting the work of restoration champions from across the continent.”

The new site complements related tools and resources found at, as well as the websites of the Global Partnership on Forest and Landscape Restoration, the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations, the Landscapes for People, Food and Nature Initiative, and the World Bank among others.


Information on AFR100:

AFR100 (the African Forest Landscape Restoration Initiative) is a country-led effort to bring 100 million hectares of deforested and degraded landscapes across Africa into restoration by 2030. The initiative connects political partners—participating African nations—with technical and financial support to scale up restoration on the ground and capture associated benefits for food security, climate change resilience, and poverty alleviation. The initiative was launched in 2015 during the margins of COP 21 in Paris. AFR100 contributes to the Bonn Challenge, the New York Declaration on Forests and Sustainable Development Goal 15.

Media contacts:

Teko Nhlapo, Communication & Advocacy, Sustainable Land Management at NEPAD Agency, and +2783 596 8752

Natasha Ferarri, Communications Officer, Global Restoration Initiative at WRI, and +447788594911


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