Djibouti signs new CAADP compact: A united push toward food and nutrition security

On 19 April 2012, the Government of Djibouti became the 30th African Union member to sign a Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP) Compact aimed to improve food and nutrition security and increase agricultural growth in Djibouti. As coordinator of the development partners group on food security and agriculture, FAO was co-signatory of the Compact on behalf of the group.

CAADP is an African-led initiative, introduced in 2003 by the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD) that aims to help African countries reach a higher path of economic growth through agriculture-led development. Djibouti is situated in the Horn of Africa, mainly driven by trade and the tertiary sector. Food security is however a significant problem: around 15 percent of the country’s population is food insecure and suffers acute malnutrition at a decreasing rate that still hovers at 10 percent. The Government’s intention, through the implementation of CAADP, is to reduce poverty and enhance food security and nutrition.

Djibouti’s National Programme for Food Security (PNSA), developed with FAO’s assistance, is the investment arm of CAADP. It provides a roadmap for priority investment around three thrusts: assurance of food security; assistance to vulnerable groups; and support to new sources of growth. Along these lines, 26 projects have been identified for a total amount of USD 129.8 million, of which the Djibouti government has committed USD 7.6 million. These funds are expected to be mobilized over the next five years (2012-2017).

This CAADP agreement followed a national workshop in Djibouti held on 9 April 2012 to validate the PNSA and prioritize investments needs before signing of the Compact. The validation workshop brought together 80 participants comprising regional delegates, members of the Government, agricultural producers, pastoralists, NGOs, and representatives from bilateral and multilateral donors, as well as from UN and other international agencies.

FAO’s Investment Centre and Programme Development Support Divisions jointly provided investment support and policy advice on both the formulation of the PNSA and facilitation of the workshop. This work, together with Compacts and investment plans developed in other countries of the region, will also provide input to a regional CAADP Compact for the Horn of Africa, which is being developed under the leadership of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD).

Now that the Compact has been signed, the documentation will be submitted to a post-Compact peer review, a formal process carried out to ensure that country compacts embrace NPCA-CAADP principles and values, and thereby build systems and capacity to effectively and efficiently deliver on national and regional growth and development objectives. The Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), the NPCA-CAADP nominated regional economic organization, will be leading the review process.

Useful links
Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP)
New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD)

Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD)
The Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA)