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Operations and thematic priorities of IFAD's Near East and North Afrcia Division by Taysir Al-Ghanem

Operations and thematic priorities of IFAD's Near East and North Afrcia Division by Taysir Al-Ghanem

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  • 1. Near East and North Africa Division IFAD ACTIVITIES AND THEMATIC PRIORITIES IN MEMBERIFAD ACTIVITIES AND THEMATIC PRIORITIES IN MEMBER COUNTRIES OF THE LEAGUE OF ARAB STATES (LAS)COUNTRIES OF THE LEAGUE OF ARAB STATES (LAS)
  • 2. IFAD Global Investments • Since the start of its operations in 1987, IFAD invested about US$ 12 billion in some 840 projects in 117 developing countries • Total cost exceeding US$30 billion, including about US$10 billion of national financing (governments, local institutions and beneficiaries) and about US$8 billion in co-financing from external sources (donors) • The share of countries covered by the Near East and North Africa Division (including NENA and CEN regions) amounts to about US$ 2 billion (16%)
  • 3. Overview of IFAD Investments in LAS Countries 1978-2009 • US$ 1.45 billion investment (13% of global), generating: - About US$1.3 billion in co-financing from external sources - About US$ 2 billion in national contributions • Number of beneficiaries exceeds 3.8 million households ( about 22.3 million poor rural people) In addition: • IFAD extended over US$110 million in regional grants in support of agricultural research, technology transfer and capacity-building • 119 investment projects in 14 countries: Algeria, Comoros, Djibouti, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Mauritania, Morocco, Palestine, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Tunisia and Yemen • Total project costs amount to about US$ 5 billion
  • 4. On-going IFAD Operations in LAS Countries • Total project costs amount to about US$ 921 million • IFAD’s investments of US$ 415 million generated: - About US$209 million in co- financing from external sources - About US$ 297 million in national contributions •32 projects in 12 countries: Comoros, Djibouti, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Mauritania, Morocco, Palestine, Sudan, Syria, Tunisia and Yemen
  • 5. On-going grant activities in LAS countries • Amounting to over US$ 12 million • focus on natural resources management, agricultural production, capacity building, market access and food security •36 on-going country-specific grants in 15 countries: Algeria, Comoros, Djibouti, Egypt, Jordan, Iraq, Lebanon, Mauritania, Morocco, Palestine, Qatar, Sudan, Syria, Tunisia and Yemen
  • 6. IFAD Thematic Priorities in the Arab States • Providing microfinance for the rural poor • Reducing unemployment, particularly among rural youth • Linking small growers with domestic and international markets In addition: • Post-conflict rural reconstruction rehabilitation of food production • Improving agricultural productivity and food security • Reducing vulnerability to climate change, addressing water scarcity
  • 7. Current tends and challenges • IPCC predicts a hotter and drier NENA region, with largely reduced precipitation and occasional devastating flash floods. • Fewer less intense precipitations are observed throughout NENA, with further 20-40 % reduction in average annual rainfall predicted.
  • 8. Increasing water scarcity • 80-100 million people will be exposed to water stress by 2025, with progressive depletion of underground water. • By 2025, the per capita water supply will be down to 500m3 from 3,300m3 in 1960. North Kordofan, Sudan
  • 9. Poor agriculture • Only 36% or 71 million hectares out of 198 million hectares of arable land in the Arab region are cultivated¹. • Agriculture consumes over 83% of available fresh water²; but increasingly loosing to competing demand (e.g. human consumption). • Cultivated area could decrease significantly should the trend of the past 30 years of diminishing public investment in the sector continues (from an annual average of US$6.1 billion in 1986-90 to US$1.9 billion in 1996–2000). • So far results: - A decline of its share in total exports from16% in 1970 to 7% in 2006³. - A decline in its contribution GDP from 15% in 2000 to 12.6% in 2006. • Rainfed crop yields could drop by 50% by 2020 in certain countries, due to the decrease in the average rainfall.
  • 10. Sea level rise • Sea level is projected to rise by 0.8 meter to 2.0 meters by 2100, with the Arab region suffering the worst social, economic, and ecological impacts, including:  loss of low-lying coastal areas mostly in six countries and affecting 43 port cities of the region.  increased coastal erosion and degrade natural ecosystems, incl coral reefs and biodiversity.  Loss of vast farming land and with it the livelihood of millions of small farmers and poor rural people.  Example: In Egypt’s Delta a 0.5 meter rise would inundate 1,800 Km² of cropland and displace about 4 million people.
  • 11. Main thematic issues to tackle over next 5 years • Addressing unprecedented NR problems, especially water scarcity • Advising governments against reverting back to unsustainable agricultural policies • Providing attractive financial products to NENA governments - Increased attention to agriculture will mean increasing demand for IFAD loans - BUT, IFAD financial products are out-dated, PBAS is a limiting factor, and some MICs not willing to borrow at ordinary terms • Increased demand for innovation and assistance in replicating and up-scaling new best practices for rural poverty reduction (e.g. rural finance, unemployment, rural advisory services, etc.) • Attracting public and private investments to the agricultural and rural sectors Dealing with poor governance

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