Policy Statement on Financing ASARECA’s Regional AR4D Programmes
ASARECA Member Countries Re-Affirm Commitment to Finance Regional Collaboration in Agricultural Research for Development
October 22, 2020
The Permanent Secretaries in charge of Agriculture line ministries and Director Generals (DGs) of National Agricultural Research Institutes in the 14 member countries of the Association for Strengthening Agricultural Research in Eastern and Central Africa (ASARECA) including: Burundi, Cameroon, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of Congo, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Madagascar, Republic of the Congo, Rwanda, South Sudan, Sudan, Tanzania and Uganda, together with the ASARECA Board of Directors, held a virtual consultative meeting on October 22, 2020 to deliberate on how to finance ASARECA’s regionally coordinated Agricultural Research for Development (AR4D) initiatives.
The delegations noted that they are:
A. Cognizant of the fact that the main objective for which the member countries established ASARECA was to promote regional collaboration and collective action for cost effective utilization of the available resources to facilitate the production of Technologies, Innovations, Management Practices (TIMPs) and knowledge as sub-regional public goods to be shared freely by all member countries of the Association.
B. Aware that the Association has just celebrated a Silver Jubilee, having made a significant contribution by mobilizing over USD 251 million and invested it in projects leading to the improvement of livelihoods of over 63 million people in the Eastern and Central Africa (ECA) sub-region in the following areas:
- Development, dissemination and uptake of priority regional agricultural technologies including improved crop and livestock varieties; integrated soil fertility and water management packages; agronomic packages; and storage packages, among others,
- Enhancing capacity strengthening through development of partnerships at systemic, organizational and individual levels.
- Coordinating policy analysis, advocacy and trade policy harmonization.
- Enhancing value addition, market linkages and trade at national and regional level
- Mitigating effects of climate change.
- Facilitating communication, information sharing and knowledge management.
C. Mindful that such a stellar achievement attained by ASARECA requires sustainable mechanisms for mobilizing financial, human and infrastructural resources to undertake joint initiatives in agricultural research, extension, and training.
D. Guided by the commitments and resolutions of the Ministers in charge of Agricultural Research for Development in Eastern and Central Africa to support ASARECA financially and politically during their May 2019 Council of Patron Ministers Summit in Kampala, Uganda.
Resolution of the Permanent Secretaries
The Permanent Secretaries made the following resolutions:
- Clear all outstanding arrears in membership fees and other agreed-to re-capitalization contributions through mechanisms that will be from time-to-time be approved by the ASARECA Board of Directors.
- Adopt the example of the National Agricultural Research Organization (NARO-Uganda) by mainstreaming membership contributions to ASARECA into the National Agricultural Research Institutes (NARIs) budgets.
- Work with the Director Generals of the NARIS, who form the ASARECA Committee of the Director Generals to ensure sustainable disbursements of fees owed to the Association.
- Continue to demonstrate political patronage and institutional ownership of ASARECA as their AR4D coordination and convening services institution.
- Commit to share infrastructure, including laboratory facilities and human resources in initiatives that are jointly coordinated.
Adopting the Uganda model for sustainable financing of Regional AR4D
The Permanent Secretaries and DGs thanked NARO-Uganda for regularly honouring their commitment by remitting its subscription fees and other approved contributions to ASARECA. Subsequently, the delegates adopted the following approach used by NARO towards sustainable fulfillment of their commitments.
- Explaining to the Governments that fulfilling national commitments to regionally coordinated initiatives by ASARECA is critical in the continuity of national AR4D priorities.
- Articulating the ASARECA Value Proposition that is in sync with the national priorities and National Development Plans.
- Putting together evidence of past ASARECA investments, achievements and benefits thereof to the Governments.
- Mainstreaming membership fees/contributions to ASARECA into the Annual Budget and Work Plan of the NARIs, thereby integrating them into the national budgets.
- Disbursing the contributions to ASARECA immediately once the Sector funds are released. Download Full Statement Here