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Taking stock of existing work on food and agricultural policies in Africa

Dear Forum colleagues,

My name is Jean Balié, I am an Economist with the Agricultural Development Economics Division (ESA) in FAO and at present, I’m working on a new project, called Monitoring African Food and Agricultural Policies (MAFAP) jointly implemented by FAO and the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). The aim of the project is to facilitate policy dialogue based on a sound and analytical monitoring system to promote more informed decision-making at the national, regional and international levels.

During the first phase of the project, we are carrying out a broad review of food and agricultural policies in Africa. One of the project outputs is a synthesis of currently existing work on food and agricultural policies in Africa.

Considering the broad diversity of stakeholders undertaking policy analysis work in Africa and of information sources, it would be extremely helpful if you could point out existing policy monitoring and policy analysis activities in Africa (who has done what, where) or any similar attempt at taking stock of policy analysis/policy monitoring activities in Africa.

The 10 MAFAP countries where the project will be implemented are: Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Mali, Nigeria, Tanzania, and Uganda.

In these countries, the following topics are of particular interest to us:
- Analysis and measurement of incentives and disincentives to food and agricultural value chains
- Value chain analysis
- Analysis of public expenditures and aid flows (with focus on Africa)
- Design and measurement of development and sector performance indicators in order to take into consideration the broad development objectives such as food security, poverty eradication, sustainable management of natural resources, etc.
- Analysis of the present institutional capacities concerning policy analysis and data systems in the 10 MAFAP countries.

The synthesis of existing work will be made available to FSN Forum members by the end of April.

In parallel we are also developing a methodology for policy monitoring, which involves adapting existing forms of measurement and analysis (such as the PSE of the OECD, the indicators developed in the context of the World Bank project on distortion to Agricultural Incentives, the indicators generated out of the Policy Analysis Matrix, etc.) to the African context. I would appreciate any suggestion or reference that would help us with the development of this methodology.

Many thanks in advance,

Jean Balié
Economist Agricultural Development Economics Division of FAO
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