About RAAF


Aware of the importance of the agricultural sector in the development of the West African region, the ECOWAS Heads of State and Government adopted the ECOWAS Agricultural Policy (ECOWAP) on January 19, 2005, in Accra, Ghana.

To implement this policy, on October 23, 2009, in Yamoussoukro, Republic of Côte d'Ivoire, the extraordinary session of ministers of regional integration, agriculture, trade, economy, and finance of the 15 ECOWAS member States recommended the creation of an operational technical agency with administrative and financial management autonomy to provide effective services to member States and the region in the field of agriculture and food.

Accordingly, the Regional Agency for Agriculture and Food (RAAF) was created by Regulation C/REG.1/08/11 during the sixty-sixth ordinary session of the ECOWAS Council of Ministers held in Abuja, Nigeria, from August 17 to 19, 2011, on the recommendation of the Specialized Ministerial Committee on Agriculture, Environment, and Water Resources of the ECOWAS member States.

RAAF’s mandate is to ensure the technical implementation of regional investment programs and plans that contribute to the operationalization of the regional agricultural policy, drawing on regional institutions, organizations, and stakeholders with proven expertise.

Officially launched on September 27, 2013, RAAF is a specialized technical agency based in Lomé, Togo, under the Headquarters Agreement signed on November 26, 2012, between the ECOWAS Commission and the Republic of Togo. Over the years, with the leadership of the ECOWAS Commission as well as the increasing involvement and interest of technical and financial partners, RAAF's project portfolio has grown significantly.

What we do

RAAF's mission is to contribute to the implementation of the regional agricultural policy, ECOWAP, whose objective by 2025 is to "contribute in a sustainable manner to meeting the food needs of the population, economic and social development, and reduction of poverty in member States, as well as of inequalities between territories, zones, and countries".

Specifically, RAAF has the mandate to :

  • Strengthen the technical intervention capacities of the ECOWAS Commission in the agro-sylvo-pastoral and fisheries sector in terms of investment program implementation, strategic guidance, regulations, and oversight.
  • Coordinate the activities and interventions of specialized technical institutions in the agro-sylvo-pastoral and fisheries sectors, in the interest of rationalization.
  • Contribute to capacity building of regional and national stakeholders in terms of project preparation, implementation, monitoring and evaluation, as well as communication/visibility of activities.

Our Approach

RAAF is responsible for coordinating and facilitating the implementation of the regional agricultural policy (ECOWAP). It does not directly implement actions on the ground but contracts with technical institutions and all actors with proven skills in their field of expertise. As the approach is essentially based on delegation (getting things done), RAAF plays a coordinating, supervisory, mentoring, facilitative, and networking role.

As part of certain regional initiatives, with the support of technical and financial partners, RAAF provides subsidies, through calls for proposals, to projects in the field led by the public and private sectors, NGOs, farmers’ associations, and organizations in the region. These field projects aim to identify, understand, and capture good agricultural and pastoral practices for scaling up at the national and regional levels.

In addition to the technical instrument that RAAF represents, the Regional Fund for Agriculture and Food (RFAF) was created in 2011 and located within the ECOWAS Bank for Investment and Development (EBID). Its purpose is to finance investment programs and plans that contribute to the operationalization of ECOWAP.

RAAF provides technical assistance to RFAF in terms of support, capacity building for States and stakeholders, and implementation of the ECOWAP project and program management cycle.


RAAF's governance is based on the principles of transparency in the management of human, financial, and material resources, as well as activities. The governance bodies are:

  • RAAF Steering Committee, responsible for approving the annual work plan, projects, and programs led by regional stakeholders. It is chaired by the ECOWAS Commissioner for Agriculture and meets once a year.
  • Regional steering committees for ECOWAP projects and programs, responsible for validating activity reports and annual work plans, providing strategic guidance and recommendations for the effective implementation of projects and programs.
  • Specialized technical committees, responsible for reviewing the progress of project implementation, ensuring consistency and synergies between various regional initiatives.
  • The Executive Directorate, responsible for agency management, direct relations with the Department of Agriculture, as well as consultative bodies involved in steering regional agricultural policy, technical cooperation institutions, farmers’ and socio-professional organizations, civil society, and any other regional stakeholders likely to make a decisive contribution to achieving the expected results of ECOWAP. It is responsible for the efficient functioning of the agency and reports on its activities to the statutory bodies of the ECOWAS Commission. The Executive Directorate is supported by three divisions: Technical Operations Division, Regional Food Security Reserve Division, and Administration and Finance Division.

Human resources

The team of experts involved in the implementation of RAAF's activities comprises :

  • RAAF staff.
  • Project teams recruited for the duration of various projects under RAAF's coordination.
  • Consultants and other service providers (individuals or firms) recruited for one-off assignments.
  • Interns seeking learning and work experience.

Collaboration and teamwork among experts enable RAAF to fulfill its mission.

Our partners

Though often considered as beneficiaries, the fifteen (15) ECOWAS member States are first and foremost RAAF’s main partners. To these must be added regional stakeholders structured within technical cooperation institutions, socio-professional organizations, civil society, private companies, and various technical and financial partners.