World Bank set to invest over $5 billion in drylands across 11 African countries

World Bank has announced plans to invest over $5 billion within the next five years to help restore degraded landscapes in 11 African countries. World Bank Group President, David Malpass, has announced plans by the bank to invest over $5 billion within the next five years to help restore degraded landscapes, improve agriculture productivity and general livelihood across 11 African countries.

This was announced by the President during the One Planet Summit, a high-level meeting co-hosted with France and the United Nations, focused on addressing climate change and biodiversity loss.

World Bank

World Bank

The funding will also support biodiversity, community development, food security, job creation, resilient infrastructure, rural mobility, and access to renewable energy across the Sahel, Lake Chad and Horn of Africa.

This is in line with the Great Green Wall initiative. It also builds on World Bank landscape investments in these countries over the past eight years that reached more than 19 million people and placed 1.6 million hectares under sustainable land management.

What they are saying

  • “This investment, which comes at a crucial time, will help improve livelihoods as countries recover from COVID-19 while also dealing with the impact of both biodiversity loss and climate change on their people and economies,” said Malpass.
  • The Chairperson of the African Union Commission, Moussa Faki Mahamat, stated that “restoring natural ecosystems in the drylands of Africa benefits both people and the planet.”

What you should know

  • PROGREEN, a World Bank global fund dedicated to boosting countries’ efforts to address landscape degradation, will also work with many partners to invest $14.5 million in five Sahelian countries – Burkina Faso, Chad, Niger, Mali, Mauritania.
  • The World Bank Group is the biggest multilateral funder of climate investments in developing countries. In December 2020, the World Bank Group announced an ambitious new target for 35% of its financing to have climate co-benefits, on average, over the next five years.
  • The Sahel part of Africa includes from west to east parts of northern Senegal, southern Mauritania, central Mali, northern Burkina Faso, the extreme south of Algeria, Niger, the extreme north of Nigeria, the extreme north of Cameroon and Central African Republic, central Chad, central and southern Sudan, the extreme north of South Sudan, Eritrea, and the extreme north of Ethiopia.
  • Horn of Africa is the easternmost extension of African land. The region that is home to the countries of Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, and Somalia.
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