In Central Africa, the agricultural sector accounts for more than 20% of economic growth. In order to foster the resilience of agricultural systems in the subregion by 2040, CORAF organized from 16 to 18 January 2024, a regional conference to update the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) and its operational instrument, the Regional Agriculture Investment Plan and Food Security and Nutrition (RAIP-FNS). This event was organized in collaboration with the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS), the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and RuRal Hub.

The various stakeholders took stock of the implementation of the CAP, analyse the prospects for 2040 and propose a new ECCAS Common Agricultural Policy by 2040 with a 15-year regional action and investment plan.

As part of its mission to support the definition and implementation of national and regional agricultural policies, CORAF supports this initiative to revise the CAP of the ECCAS which also allows to strengthen its cooperation with sub-regional organizations and strengthen its redeployment in Central Africa.

During this conference, CORAF presented the assessment and prospects of the development of technologies and innovations for the resilience of agricultural systems in Central Africa. It is important to note that Central Africa has underexploited potential in the agricultural sector both in terms of production, processing and marketing.

«The assessment and the prospects of the development of technologies and innovations for the resilience of agricultural systems in Central Africa are promising but require a continuous commitment of the parties and a multi-stakeholder collaboration» insisted Dr Alioune FALL, Acting Executive Director of CORAF during its presentation.

“Every country has an agricultural development strategy. It is a question to pool all the experiences and knowledge, while taking into account the commitments of Heads of State in terms of sustainable development, the Malabo declaration, the Agenda 2063 of Africa. We must integrate all these commitments and associate them with the new challenges of climate change, the resilience of populations, the use of the results of science, technology and innovation,” insisted Gabriel MBAIROBE, Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development (MINADER) of the Republic of Cameroon during the conference.

This meeting also showed the importance of integrating the different commitments and concerns of different stakeholders.

“It is about having a common agricultural policy that is inclusive because we had a common agricultural policy approved in 2015 with implementation difficulties. The idea of this conference is to involve all stakeholders including producers, the private sector, civil society, science actors, because to be sustainable, it is necessary to rely on science in order to have a robust agricultural policy,” recalled Dr Ângela Maria P. Barreto Da Veiga MORENO, President of the Commission of the Economic Community of Central African States (ECCAS) present at the conference.

With a view to promoting food security and sovereignty in Central Africa, this regional meeting made it possible to adopt a long-term agricultural development strategy focused on accelerating economic growth, job creation and poverty reduction.