Wed, 04 Oct 2023

Dakar, Senegal - 02 June 2023 - The United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA), through its Sub-Regional Office for West Africa, in partnership with the Senegalese Ministry of the Economy, Planning and Cooperation, the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), the Comite Inter Etats de Lutte contre la Secheresse dans le Sahel (CILSS) and the World Food Programme (WFP), is organizing in Dakar a Regional meeting of Intergovernmental Organizations in West Africa: "Promoting Regional Value chains and food security for strengthening regional integration and sustainable development in West Africa".

Scheduled to take place from June 14 to 15, this forum aims to strengthen the partnership for sustainable development between the United Nations system's entities represented by ECA, WFP and other UN agencies, on the one hand, and ECOWAS, WAEMU, CILSS and the other intergovernmental organizations of West Africa, on the other hand. 

The specific objectives of the meeting are:

Review the progress on the regional integration,

Review and discuss the findings of the ECA's study on the Opportunities for Regional Value Chains in West Africa within the framework of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA)

Assess the recent subregional macro-economic and food security trends; 

Brief on recent flagship subregional initiatives undertaken by ECA, WFP, and other UN Agencies  and West African IGOs   

Strengthen the policy dialogue on the mounting food insecurity threats in the West African sub-region, to sensitize political and economic decision-makers to commit for immediate and structural responses 

Discuss the prospects for strengthening the partnership between ECA, WFP, and other UN entities with IGOs to better support the efforts of West African countries towards deepening regional integration and achieving sustainable development.

The population of West Africa is estimated at 424.3 million in 2022. It is estimated that 27.3% of this population lives on less than $2.15 a day. The region's Human Development Index (HDI) of between 0.4 and 0.6 is the lowest on the continent, with thirteen of the fifteen countries in the low human development group in 2022. As a result, the sub-region is not on track to achieve the SDGs by 2030.

Although some progress has been made towards achieving MDG 8, with encouraging results in terms of reducing extreme poverty (six countries), access to drinking water (five countries), access to energy (five countries) and local development financing (six countries), 80% of ECOWAS countries still have a significant gap to fill in terms of the fight against hunger and food insecurity, access to quality health services, industrialization and economic diversification, improved living conditions in cities, and peace and good governance.

On the road to deeper regional integration, the West African sub-region continues to engage at national and regional levels to reinforce the effective implementation of the AfCFTA.

Through this forum, the United Nations intends to strengthen its partnership with ECOWAS and the Intergovernmental Organizations (IGOs) for better coordination of support aligned with the strategic priorities of the sub-regional organizations and more globally with the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

 For further information, please contact: Tahirou Gouro, Communications Officer, CEA- BSR/AO Email:


Source: UNECA

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