Capacity Building for the Implementation of ECOWAP

Renforcement de capacités


In 2018, ECOWAS adopted a stakeholder capacity-building strategy to fast-track the achievement of ECOWAP objectives through agricultural, pastoral and fisheries investment projects, programmes, and plans.

Capacity building refers to everything that is provided to ECOWAP stakeholders for its implementation. This support may take the form of technical, administrative, and managerial skills/training, on the one hand, or financial (budget support) or material support in the form of technological equipment or human resources, on the other.

At the regional level, with the support of technical and financial partners, a number of initiatives, projects and programmes are being developed and implemented in order to "equip stakeholders with the functional institutional and technical capacities required for the effective implementation of ECOWAP" and thereby contribute to the achievement of ECOWAP's specific objective 4, which is to "improve the business environment, governance and financing mechanisms of the agricultural and agri-food sector".

These initiatives, projects and programmes focus mainly on coordination, improving the monitoring and evaluation mechanisms of ECOWAP and its projects and programmes, setting up and improving regional information systems, operationalising the Regional Fund for Agriculture and Food (RFAF), communication, and knowledge production and management.

The implementation of ECOWAP involves many stakeholders with specific but complementary roles and functions. This includes the following categories of stakeholders :

  • The member States, through the National Agricultural Investment, Food Security and Nutrition Plans. The States require technical and institutional skills to ensure the main functions: definition of orientations, political steering, planning of activities, definition of policy rules and measures, mobilisation of resources, intersectoral, multi-stakeholder and pan-territorial coordination, communication and dissemination of good practices, accountability.
  • Non-state actors. This category mainly includes (i) farmers', herders’, and pastoralists' organisations, (ii) social organisations, (iv) gender group, (v) non-governmental organisations and (vi) private sector. The roles assigned to these categories of stakeholders range from advocacy and lobbying to genuine involvement in the implementation of programmes and projects. These roles require technical, organisational, and institutional skills in order to be effective in advocacy, lobbying, influencing and delegated project management.
  • Technical institutions for regional and international cooperation, whose main functions are to coordinate and ensure the technical execution of projects and programmes contributing to the implementation of ECOWAP. They provide support to States and to regional and national stakeholders in the production of information, technologies, and assistance in the implementation of programmes and projects within their areas of competence. In addition to coordinating actions and planning activities, they are also responsible for good governance and accountability on behalf of ECOWAS.
  • Integration institutions, mainly ECOWAS and UEMOA, are responsible for agricultural policy orientations and development priorities at regional level. They perform regional leadership on behalf of the member States, through a governance system that has been established and embodies three categories of roles: (i) political steering, (ii) technical implementation and (iii) consultation, communication, and accountability
  • Consultation and dialogue platforms. There are two types of platforms, which seek to perpetuate the tradition of consultation and inclusive, participatory dialogue that has governed the formulation of regional agricultural policy. The first type involves ad hoc structures (Consultative committee for agriculture and food, Interdepartmental committee for agriculture and food). The second is the multi-stakeholder platform for consultation and dialogue facilitation (the RURAL HUB).

In this respect, capacity building is a cross-cutting theme and concerns all 4 of ECOWAP's strategic axes, which are supported by the region's various technical and financial partners.