Sahel: FAO obtains a pledge of 2 billion dollars to fight against food insecurity

(Ecofin Agency) – The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) has obtained nearly $2 billion in funding pledges from the international community to fight food insecurity in the Sahel and Lake Chad region. The information was disclosed in a press release, published Thursday, April 7, by the organization on its website.

Pledges make up nearly half of FAO’s humanitarian appeal. The proceeds are intended for emergency aid and to strengthen “the resilience of vulnerable people and agri-food systems” in the affected regions.

Part of the pledged funds will come from the European Union (654 million euros) under its 2021-2024 aid programme”provide a long-term development aid response to the structural food crisis in the seven most affected countries.

According to FAO Deputy Director-General Laurent Thomas (photo), this aid will meet the humanitarian needs of 41 million people this year. The official asksconsiderable efforts (…) to provide an immediate response but also to address the root causes of this crisis, failing which levels of acute hunger will continue to rise.”

The EU estimates that currently 29.5 million people living in the project areas are in need of urgent humanitarian assistance.

There is an urgent need to reinvest in local food production as well as in humanitarian food aid and safety nets. Investing in safeguarding agricultural livelihoods today means saving the lives of millions tomorrow. Countries in the Sahel region must invest to make agrifood systems more efficient, inclusive, resilient and sustainable“, said Laurent Thomas.

Between 2019 and 2022, the number of people affected by acute food insecurity increased from 10.8 million to 40.7 million. For the FAO,millions more [are] risk of sinking into a crisis or worse.”

Jean-Marc Gogbeu

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