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AfDB and FAO launch joint programme to support pastoral production

African Development Bank (AfDB) and Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) have launched a US$300 million programme to support pastoral production in the Greater Horn of Africa

The programme has been developed from the findings of an AfDB study on sustainable livestock development in the region, which looked at how to improve livestock health, enhance livestock infrastructure for market access and improve forage availability.

"There have always been extreme climatic conditions in the Horn region," said AfDB vice president Kamal Elkheshen.

"Projections by climatologists indicate conditions will grow more severe with climate change. We take that as a given constant."

Response measures need to take pastoralism into account, which is the dominant mode of production. Since animals are the basis of production for much of the regional population, building resilience into the production system is the key, he argued.

Elkheshen announced that the AfDB would respond to the challenge by strengthening the pastoral mode of production through the improvement of the functioning of food markets, irrigation schemes, veterinary services and animal husbandry techniques.

According to AfDB, the programme will be implemented over the next five years in Djibouti, Sudan, Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia.