Djibouti, 16-07-2013 – The Executive Secretary of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), Ambassador (Engineer) Mahboub Maalim, and Ambassador, Head of the E.U. Delegation to Djibouti, Mr. Joseph Silva, yesterday signed a financing agreement for the improvement of the surveillance of animal diseases in support of trade in IGAD Member States, in the presence of Dr. Ahmed Elsawalhy, Director of the Interafrican Bureau for Animal Resources of the African Union (AU-IBAR).
Within the framework of the Regional Indicative Programme of the 10th European Funds for development and of the initiative Supporting the Horn of Africa’s Resilience (SHARE), this agreement has been endowed with 6 million Euros and will be implemented by the Interafrican Bureau for Animal Resources of the African Union (AU-IBAR) in partnership with IGAD Centre for Pastoral and Livestock Development (ICPALD) under the overall supervision of IGAD.
“I take this opportunity to thank one of our most reliable partners, the EU, both at institutional level and at the Member States level”, Ambassador (Eng.) Mahboub Maalim told in his opening remarks before reminding the audience how important animal health is to the region.
Indeed, the livestock sector has substantial potential to contribute to food security and general economic integration within the Greater Horn of Africa. However the sector is seriously constrained by animal diseases. The bans the IGAD region had by the major importing countries on livestock imports due to concerns over trans-border animal diseases have had significant impacts on the livelihoods of livestock dependent communities and business enterprises.
“Through the commitment signed today, a significant contribution is expected for improving the contribution of livestock to food security and the fight against poverty in the region,” Ambassador Silva said.
The project will contribute to strategic programs, particularly in terms of harmonization of sanitary measures and support to:
• the development of traceability and certification schemes,
• IGAD Regional Policy Framework on Animal Health in the context of trade and vulnerability of IGAD member states
• and the IGAD Drought Disaster Resilience and Sustainability Initiative particularly through the two priority intervention areas: Livelihoods support and basic social services and market access, trade and financial services.