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Ethiopia and Norway sign forest protection agreement

The Norwegian government has allocated up to NOK600 million (US$80 million) for sustainable forest management and forest restoration in Ethiopia until 2020. With this commitment, Norway is supporting Ethiopia’s Climate Resilient Green Economy (CRGE) strategy to reach middle-income-country status by 2025, with greenhouse gas emissions at 2010 levels. The grant will be used for forest protection and restoration activities that are essential to avoid increases in emissions, as well as for establishing innovative public-private partnerships in the forestry sector.

Press release - Norwegian Government

Norway Agriculture

Japan's foreign ministry gives ¥3.5 billion to agriculture in Madagascar

Japan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) announced that it will provide a ¥3.5 billon (US$29 million) grant to Madagascar as part of its commitment made at the 2016 Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD VI). The funding will be used to support the restoration of irrigation systems in the southwest region of Alaotra Lake, in order to improve rice production. More than 70% of farmers in Madagascar are engaged in rice cultivation.

Press release - MOFA (in Japanese)

Japan Agriculture

Launch of the Italian Parliamentarian alliance for food security

On July 19, 2017, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO)  and a group of Italian Parliament members, led Stella Bianchi, launched the Italian Parliamentary Alliance for Food Security. At the launch event, Mario Lubetkin, Chief of Cabinet of FAO’s Director General, emphasized that an enabling legislative environment is fundamental to achieving food and nutrition security, and flagged the role of legislators in improving nutrition and food security.

FAO has made it a priority to work with parliamentarians in donor and implementing countries; it is likely that FAO will increase collaboration with them, and provide technical advice and support.

 Press release – Democratic Party (in Italian)

Italy Agriculture Nutrition

EU and Brazil urge WTO to limit 'trade-distorting' farm subsidies

The EU and Brazil have submitted a joint proposal to the World Trade Organization (WTO), urging for reform in farm subsidies to ensure a "level playing field" for emerging economies. The proposal suggests limiting subsidies in proportion to the size a country's agricultural sector, taking into account the specific needs of developing countries. Least-developed countries would be exempted from any subsidy limits, to encourage development in their farming sector. According to the EU, Colombia, Peru and Uruguay have endorsed the initiative, which comes in the run-up to a December WTO meeting in Buenos Aires.

The EU and Brazil are the world's two biggest producers of agricultural products. 

Press release - European Commission

News article - EurActiv

EU Agriculture

Highlights from G20 Summit in Hamburg

Germany hosted this year’s G20 leaders’ Summit in Hamburg from July 7 to July 8, 2017. The heads of the 19 G20 nations, along with the leaders of the EU, discussed topics covering trade, climate, terrorism, security, immigration, health, Africa, and education. A declaration released on July 10, 2017, details the consensus reached. It also reveals how agreement in some areas, such as terrorism and health, was far-reaching, while in others, such as climate change and international trade, it was more limited. 

Highlights across topics include:

Health: 

  • focused on the coordinating role of the WHO
  • emphasized the importance of investments in health-systems strengthening
  • recognized the need to eradicate polio and fight antimicrobial resistance
  • underlined the necessity of sufficient funding for health emergencies and preparedness
  • declared willingness to invest more in global health R&D.

Focus on Africa: 

  • launched the G20 Africa Partnership, which seeks to fight poverty and promote economic development through support of infrastructure, education, capacity-building, and investment frameworks
  • adopted Germany’s Compacts with Africa as a tool to foster private investments in African countries that show willingness to reform governance.

Youth employment:

  • launched G20 Initiative for Rural Youth Employment, which has a particular focus on Africa and commits to helping creating up to 1.1 million new jobs benefitting young people by 2022, including through strengthening support to the Global Agriculture and Food Security Program (GAFSP)
  • committed to increase support for innovative, employment-oriented skills development programs for at least 5 million young people over the next five years, with particular attention to rural areas.

Education:

  • emphasized the importance of vocational training and e-skills, especially for women
  • introduced a new ‘International Finance Facility’ for education.

Climate change:

  • no agreement met on a joint position due to the US’ decision to leave the Paris Agreement
  • the other 19 members, excluding the US, committed to implement the nationally-set climate goals, as outlined in the Paris Agreement, as soon as possible
  • they also recognized, in an annex on energy and climate finance, the need to significantly increase funding to climate change mitigation and adaptation.

Declaration - G20

News article - Deutsche Welle

Canada announces US$113.5 million for development in Ghana

Canada’s Minister of International Development and La Francophonie, Marie-Claude Bibeau, has announced CAD$145 million (US$113.5 million) to support two initiatives in Ghana. These initiatives are aimed at 1) modernizing Ghana's agricultural sector through training and skills-building and 2) providing financial and skill-based support to small and medium-sized enterprises to promote business development. Canada will apply a cross-cutting feminist lens to these projects and focus especially on women. This funding is part of Canada’s re-engagement with Africa.

Press Release – Global Affairs Canada

Canada Agriculture

South Korea to partner with Uganda and World Bank on agriculture

South Korea’s Economic Development Cooperation Fund (EDCF) has offered US$150 million to the World Bank’s Agriculture Cluster Development Project (ACDP) in Uganda. The initiative will, through a partnership between the EDCF and the Ugandan Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries, develop integrated agricultural information systems and resource centers to help guide farmers on where and what to grow, and how to access market for their produce. The World Bank will manage the project.

News report – All Africa

South Korea Agriculture

French NGO ACF releases policy brief to support agroecology

Action Against Hunger (Action Contre la Faim - ACF) has released the policy brief ‘Promoting Agroecology:  The most effective way to achieve sustainable food security and nutrition for all in a changing climate’. The brief champions agroecology as a cross-cutting approach for policies and programs related to 1) food security and nutrition, rural and agricultural development, and 3) climate change adaptation and mitigation. It showcases the political argument in support of ACF’s advocacy initiatives in this area, which aim to influence the transition to sustainable food systems and agricultural models.

Publication - ACF

France Agriculture

Norway announces priorities for food security and agriculture for G20

At the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO)'s 40th session, Norway’s Minister of Agriculture and Food detailed the country’s priorities for the G20 in agriculture and food security. As a guest at the G20, Norway has taken an active role in promoting Agenda 2030 in this arena. Norway calls upon leaders  to improve income-earning opportunities in rural areas, transform agriculture to attract the young, and address the root causes of migration, while making food systems more efficient, inclusive, and resilient to crises, disasters, and conflicts. It also calls on the FAO to take a leading role for global food security.

Speech – Norwegian Government website ( in Norwegian)

Norway Agriculture

Norway reaffirms partnership with Brazil to reduce deforestation

Due to the Amazon Fund, a partnership to reduce forest deforestation, Brazil is one the largest recipients of Norwegian ODA. During the Paris climate summit in 2015, Norway agreed to continue its support to the Fund until 2020. Funding levels, however, depend on annual results of the program: Norway’s contribution will be decided in the end of 2017 after information on deforestation numbers in 2016 is confirmed. Compared to previous years, preliminary figures reveal an increase in deforestation for 2016, which would lead to a decrease in Norway’s contribution.

News report - The Norwegian Ministry of Climate and Environment

Norway Agriculture