Simon Ateba covers the White House, the U.S. government, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and other financial and international institutions for Today News Africa in Washington D.C. Simon can be reached on firstname.lastname@example.org
Africans would soon know who is performing well, poorly or beating expectations in the agricultural sector, with the release, in a few days, of the Africa Agriculture Transformation Scorecard (AATS) at African Union headquarters in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed Ali would present the scorecard during the upcoming AU General Assembly in Addis Ababa, AU said in a statement to TODAY NEWS AFRICA in Washington DC on Friday.
It’s a complex situation on the continent. On the one hand, most African countries talk loudly and relentlessly about diversification of their economies, especially tearing into the agricultural arena. On the other hand, not much is being done beyond talks, promises and setting up of committees, many of them.
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The 2017 report, for instance, revealed that only 20 of the 47 Member States that reported were on track towards achieving the commitments set out in the Malabo Declaration.
The inaugural 2017 report, the first of its kind in Africa, was launched and endorsed by the AU General Assembly in January 2018.
Rwanda led the top 10 best performers with a score of 6.1, followed by Mali (5.6), Morocco (5.5), Ethiopia (5.3), Togo (4.9), Malawi (4.9), Kenya (4.8), Mauritania (4.8), Burundi (4.7), and Uganda (4.5). The report set the 2017 benchmark at 3.94 out of 10 as the minimum score for a country to be considered on track towards achieving the Malabo commitments by 2025.
The 2019 benchmark is 6.66 required to be on-track for the reporting period compared with a minimum score of 3.94 for the previous reporting period. In the Malabo Declaration, AU Member States committed to report on a biennial basis, the progress in achieving the 7 commitments of the Declaration.
AUC Commissioner for Rural Economy and Agriculture, Josefa Sacko, said the BR Report provides a primary tool for governments and non-state actors in directing and recording the economic and social change achieved from agricultural growth.
“The BR Report provides direction, serving as a performance record and map of areas of progress and those in need of improvement, for all those involved in agricultural transformation,” Commissioner Sacko said.
The scorecard to be presented early next month captures the continent’s agricultural progress based on a pan-African data collection exercise led by the African Union Commission’s Department of Rural Economy and Agriculture (DREA), AUDA-NEPAD and Regional Economic Communities in collaboration with technical and development partners. Member States were assessed on the seven commitments in the Malabo Declaration, across 47 indicators.
Prime Minister Abiy, the AU Leader of the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Program (CAADP) would present the AATS and Biennial Review Report to the AU Assembly of Heads of State and Government.
It is the second Biennial Review Report on the implementation of the June 2014 Malabo Declaration on Accelerated Agricultural Growth and Transformation for Shared Prosperity and Improved Livelihoods and its Africa Agriculture Transformation Scorecard (AATS).
The AATS tracks progress in commitments made by AU Heads of State and Government through CAADP and the Malabo Declaration to increase prosperity and improved livelihoods for transforming agriculture. The indicators chosen to track the performance categories were defined on the basis of the strategic objectives derived from the Malabo Declaration.