Positive impacts recorded in collaborative efforts between UN system and Africa

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Opportunity and issues-based coalitions formed between entities under the UN umbrella on one hand, and the African Union (AU) and African countries on the other, were able to record significant successes over the last year.

This was revealed in a progress report delivered at the ongoing 54th Session of the Conference of African Ministers of Finance, Planning and Economic Development (CoM 2022) by the Chief of the Systems-wide Coherence & Quality Assurance Section at the ECA’s Strategic Planning, Oversight & Results Division (SPORD), Demba Diarra.

The report focused on the UN system’s support for the African Union and its New Partnership for Africa’s Development (AUDA-NEPAD).

According to Mr. Diarra, reforms in the UN’s collaborations are aimed at delivering “agile and accelerated implementation of key initiatives”. The reforms pool United Nations system-wide expertise to respond to regional and sub-regional demands and to effectively collaborate with partners.

“Africa’s Regional Collaborative Platform (RCP) initially had seven opportunity and issues-based coalitions”, with an eighth to be added on regional initiatives for the Sahel, the Horn of Africa and the Great Lakes, he said.

Successes chalked under the existing coalitions include the design and launch of a joint United Nations-African online portal on data for development, best practices to address the direct and indirect effects of COVID and operationalizing the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), with emphasis on trade policies in tourism, finance, services and transport.

Another presentation by Francis Ikome of the Regional Integration and Trade Division (RITD) on the progress of the Vienna Programme of Action for Landlocked Developing Countries (LLDCs), reported steady progress towards deliverables that include the implementation of the AfCFTA and developing infrastructure for improved connectivity to regional markets.

“Africa’s landlocked countries themselves understand the importance of the AfCFTA for growth and infrastructure development. All 16 LLDCs on the continent have signed the agreement, out of which 14 have ratified it,” he added.

The annual Conference of African Ministers of Finance, Planning and Economic Development (CoM) is the ECA’s largest annual event and provides an opportunity for participants to debate key issues on Africa’s development, and to discuss the think tank’s performance in delivering on its mandate.