The African Development Bank Group is firmly committed to ensuring food security in the Sahel region, especially in Niger, to strengthen the resilience of vulnerable populations in this region.
On Tuesday, January 27, 2015, the Bank and the Government of Niger signed two agreements at the Bank's Abidjan headquarters. The first signature was for $42 million – $21 million in loans and $21 million as a grant. The second agreement relates to a grant equivalent of approximately $19.2 million.
Janvier Litse, AfDB Acting Vice-President responsible for Regional Operations, co-signed on behalf of the Bank. He said the agreements demonstrate a clear desire to move forward and fight poverty: "These two programmes to build socio-economic systems and resilience against food insecurity are strategic operations for the whole Sahel and particularly for Niger," he said, adding that interventions will be focused on a series of priority actions involving water management, protection of the environment, and improving agricultural production and productivity.”
Niger's Minister of Planning, Land Use Planning and Community Development Amadou Boubacar Cissé welcomed "these two important agreements for our country, for the implementation of a multi-national food security resilience programme in the Sahel. These two programmes are essential parts of our region's overall development strategy and we reiterate our gratitude to the whole Bank."
The Minister emphasised that "reaching an agreement on these two new operations reflects the relevance of our dialogue with the AfDB and of the efforts both parties are making."
The AfDB's total operations in Niger, since it started operations in that country in 1970, amount to approximately $1 billion.