World Bank plans to invest more than US$5bn in drylands in Africa

field 533541 640The World Bank plans to invest more than US$5bn over the next five years to help restore degraded landscapes, improve agriculture productivity, and promote livelihoods across 11 African countries on a swathe of land stretching from Senegal to Djibouti

Over the next five years, the World Bank plans to invest more than US$5 billion to help restore degraded landscapes, improve agricultural productivity and boost livelihoods across 11 African countries on land stretching from Senegal to Djibouti

World Bank Group President David Malpass announced the investment at the One Planet Summit, a high-level meeting co-hosted with France and the United Nations that is focused on addressing climate change and biodiversity loss.

“This investment, which comes at a crucial time, will help improve livelihoods as countries recover from COVID-19 while also dealing with the impact of both biodiversity loss and climate change on their people and economies,” said Malpass.

The more than US$5bn in financing will support agriculture, biodiversity, community development, food security, landscape restoration, job creation, resilient infrastructure, rural mobility, and access to renewable energy across 11 countries of the Sahel, Lake Chad and Horn of Africa.

Many of these efforts are in line with the Great Green Wall initiative. This builds on World Bank landscape investments in these countries over the past eight years that reached more than 19 million people and placed 1.6 million hectares under sustainable land management.

“Restoring natural ecosystems in the drylands of Africa benefits both people and the planet,” said Moussa Faki Mahamat, chairperson of the African Union Commission.  

Working with many partners, PROGREEN, a World Bank global fund dedicated to boosting countries’ efforts to address landscape degradation, will also invest US$14.5mn in five Sahelian countries – Burkina Faso, Chad, Niger, Mali, Mauritania.

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