FAO au Cameroun

The Hand in Hand Initiative is fully operational in Cameroon


The Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development (MINADER), Mr. Gabriel Mbairobe, presided over the official launching workshop on 28 December 2022 in Yaoundé, marking the effective start of the activities of the related technical cooperation project.

On 27 September 2022, the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development and the FAO Representative in Cameroon, Dr Athman Mravili, jointly signed the support project for the implementation of the Hand in Hand Initiative in Cameroon.

This new development axis conceived and promoted by the Director General of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) supports the implementation of ambitious country programs to accelerate the transformation of agri-food systems. The Hand in Hand (HiH) Initiative aims to improve the quality of life of people by eradicating poverty (SDG 1), eliminating hunger and malnutrition (SDG 2) and reducing inequalities (SDG 10). Its objective is to increase agricultural productivity in order to improve both nutrition and standard of living of rural populations while contributing to global economic growth, in accordance with FAO’smandate.

In this regard, the workshop to launch the HiH Initiative brought together in Yaoundé, the actors of the rural sector selected by the government and the project team, to enable them to have a better understanding of the project at large, based on the framework developed for its implementation in Cameroon.

Hand in hand with national priorities

The HiH Initiative is in line with the priority areas of FAO 2022-2026 Country Programming Framework for Cameroon. It focuses in particular on priority number one, which targets the sustainable improvement of agroforestry and fisheries productivity and value chains. It is also in line with priority number five related to strengthening the resilience of populations to environmental and socio-economic shocks and improving nutrition.

In concrete terms, the country would like to develop its rice sector as a priority, in order to become an exporter in the Central African sub-region. To achieve this, the authorities would like to reach an annual production target of nearly seven hundred and fifty thousand tons by 2030. The HiH Initiative should also serve as an advantage towards achieving the production objectives of five hundred thousand tons of fish in 2030, a commodity whose national production is significantly below demand, thus contributing to a negative trade balance.

Minister Gabriel Mbairobe is therefore confident that the Hand in Hand Initiative "will allow the government to have an additional relevant strategy and policy instrument that, in the long term, will constitute a sustainable operational matrix for crops with a high impact on food and nutritional security, as well as on poverty reduction”.

Supporting the fight against food and nutrition insecurity in Cameroon

FAO's assistance aims to support the Cameroonian government in implementing the HiH Initiative in the best conditions. To do so, the Organization will help the country to establish multi-stakeholder and cross-sectoral partnerships, in order to ensure a strong commitment of the country with donors. FAO also intends to attract private investment by providing information and evidence on priority areas of investment for development. In his speech, Mr. Abdel Rahmane Diop, FAO Representative a.i. in Cameroon noted that "the implementation of this initiative is an opportunity to have tools for planning, coordination, advocacy and decision support in order to strengthen the effectiveness and efficiency of interventions in its agricultural sector for the achievement of sustainable development goals”.

As a UN agency with a mandate to combat food insecurity, FAO supports the government by contributing its expertise and experience to the implementation and coordination of projects to fight hunger and malnutrition.