A regional workshop to improve Planning for Youth Employment in the agro-sylvo-pastoral and fisheries sector in West Africa
Tuesday, 14 November, 2023 - 22:30

A regional workshop co-organised by the ECOWAS Commission and FAO to prepare a three-year action plan for youth employment in the agro-sylvo-pastoral and fisheries sector opened this morning, 14 November 2023, in Lomé, Togo.

The main expectations from the workshop are some action plans to be integrated into the operational planning of countries and at regional level on the none hand, and a Policy brief, including the private sector, on the other hand, to encourage greater commitment to the promotion of youth employment in the agro-sylvo-pastoral and fisheries sector in West Africa. This workshop is a major contribution by FAO, as part of its 2022-2031 strategic framework, to the implementation of ECOWAS regional support strategy for Youth Employability in the agro-sylvo-pastoral and fisheries sector as part of the acceleration of the implementation of the regional agricultural policy (ECOWAP).

The strategy aims to address the issue of youth employment, across all categories, in the agro-sylvo-pastoral and fisheries sectors and within agri-food value chains. It focuses on the retention, training, installation and integration of young men and women in the various links of the agricultural and agri-food value chains. For the coordinator of the FAO sub-regional office for West Africa and the Sahel, Dr Gouantoueu Robert Guei, "together, we can create decent jobs for young people by investing more in human capital".

« The ECOWAS Commission is working hard with Member States to find solutions to address youth employment, particularly in the agroforestry and fisheries sector. Concrete actions in the implementation of the strategy include, across the region, equipment of more than 25 agronomic training centres, funding of about 25 field projects to promote local milk, and support to several agro-ecological transition and climate-smart agriculture initiatives”, the ECOWAS Director for Agriculture and Rural Development, Mr Alain Sy Traoré, said. "For ECOWAS, regional and international cooperation is necessary to better address youth employment in the region", he concluded.

This platform for dialogue and exchange, planned to end on 16 November 2023, will enable representatives from Member States and regional and international organisations to agree, among other things, on an action plan dedicated to youth employment in the sector over the next 2 to 3 years, in line with national and regional strategies and priorities.

Are in attendance of the workshop, representatives from the 15 ECOWAS Member States, regional organisations (ECOWAS, UEMOA, CILSS, etc.), the FAO Sub-regional Office for West Africa and the Sahel as well technical and financial partnerts ( (DDC, BM, BAD, BOAD, FIDA, FAO, GIZ, AFD).