Food Coalition

Strengthening policy support on food security and nutrition, with a focus on COVID-19

In North Africa and Near East (NENA), the COVID-19 crisis disrupted agricultural and food chains, thus impacting livelihoods, business, and the whole economic and financial system. The recovery from the impact of COVID-19 crisis will require political commitment coupled with more effective use of limited resources to render food systems more robust and resilient. The response will also require an explicit focus on providing evidence-based policy advice to member countries to support measures for strengthening the resilience of food systems to shocks. There is urgent need to strengthen the policy support at country level to address the socio-economic impact of COVID-19.

Experience from the Food and Nutrition Security Impact, Resilience, Sustainability and Transformation programme (FIRST) programme suggest that building policy in-country support is an effective way to strengthening policy support to member countries and to strengthen the enabling environment for food and nutrition security and sustainable agriculture. In the NENA region, the programme is implemented only in Palestine. Strengthening policy support in countries in the region is expected to assist in addressing food security, nutrition and sustainable agriculture COVID-19 related issues in the region and will accelerate the highly needed policy support for member countries in the region. This programme is also expected to contribute to implementation of Zero Hunger Initiative of the Arab countries at regional level. Lessons learned from previous crises show that integrated policies and a comprehensive set of actions are needed to ensure adequate recovery. In tandem, member countries need to be supported in designing such policies and actions to promote improved and sustainable productivity.

Priority Areas of work: Data for Decision-making
SDG: 1. No Poverty, 2. Zero Hunger
Level: Regional
Region: Near East and North Africa
Country: Egypt, Lebanon, Morocco, Sudan
Budget: USD 2 million

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