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June 2002 Canada
Canada Supports Sustainable
Development in Africa
Johannesburgh (South Africa)  Susan Whelan, Minister for International Cooperation, today announced that Canada, through the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA), will contribute $28.5 million to help Africans improve their lives, the lives of their families, and their communities. Today's announcement will help to boost agricultural production in Ghana and Ethiopia, improve social housing in South Africa, and foster economic growth and employment in the Southern Africa region.

"Having a job, food to eat, and a place to live these are all key to reducing poverty and improving the well-being of people in Africa," Minister Whelan said. "People in developing countries need the experience and expertise to carry out initiatives that will create jobs and economic growth. They need to improve their agricultural resources and technologies to increase their food security. They also need their governments and communities to recognize shelter as a human right. Canada is helping the governments and populations of African countries to gain the skills and technology they need to make development in Africa sustainable."

Minister Whelan is in South Africa to participate in the World Summit for Sustainable Development, being held in Johannesburg from August 26 to September 4, 2002. Sustainable development is about balancing human, economic, and environmental priorities, an approach that brings about a higher quality of life and better access to life's necessities for more individuals and communities all over the planet. Agriculture has been identified by the United Nations as a priority at the Summit talk.

"Improving skills and sharing knowledge will help African countries better use and conserve their natural and economic resources," Minister Whelan said. "Well-managed and productive agricultural and economic activities and social services are essential to sustainable development practices and key to providing for the needs of people today and in the future."

Funding for initiatives such as these was provided for in the December 2001 federal budget and is therefore built into the existing fiscal framework.

Canada Supports Sustainable
Development in Africa
The Funding announced today
will support the following Initiatives:

  • $12 million over 6.5 years to help three key Amhara National Regional State government institutions (Ethiopia) the Commission for Sustainable Agriculture and Environmental Rehabilitation Amhara Region, the Bureau of Agriculture, and the Amhara Region Agricultural Research Institute as well as local farmer associations to develop and promote the sustainable use of water for irrigation. This initiative will train government technical staff and officials in technical and organizational skills how to plan, design, build, and manage water harvesting and irrigation schemes. It will improve the facilities and provide equipment for the Amhara institutions. Agricultural techniques and technologies will be developed and taught to farmers, and water users associations will be set up and their members trained in water conservation and irrigation methods.

  • $10 million to Ghana's Ministry of Food and Agriculture as well as key national research institutes working in the north of Ghana through PARTNERS in Rural Development and Agriteam Canada Consulting Ltd. to improve access to and use of agricultural information and technology by local low-income and resource-poor farm households, agro-processors, marketers and communities. This initiative will help local farmers and farming communities to integrate their needs into Ghanaian institutional agendas and priorities making sure that the farmers themselves participate in identifying, developing and adopting more diversified, sustainable, and appropriate agricultural technologies to help improve farm and household management.

  • $4.2 million to the South Africa Banking Council to help stimulate private sector investment in the Southern Africa region to foster economic growth and employment. The Banking Council will work to strengthen the capacity of Southern African governments, development agencies, and financial institutions to design, assess, market and carry out public-private partnership investment initiatives. This initiative will also help to develop public-private partnership training programs that will be taught in local institutions throughout the region. In Southern Africa, public-private partnerships are an important part of encouraging foreign investment in the region and promoting greater social and economic equity.

  • $2.3 million to Rooftops Canada to help deliver subsidized housing to low-income groups in South Africa. This initiative will provide Canadian technical assistance to a number of local authorities, non-governmental organizations, and trade unions that are innovators in social housing delivery in South Africa. They will be better able to develop and manage an increasing number of housing units. Other key stakeholders will have access to technical assistance to integrate social, economic and environmental sustainability, gender equality, youth engagement and HIV/AIDS prevention and responses into social housing projects. This assistance will include: local, regional and international exchanges and training placements; the expertise of local consultants; and, Canadian technical know-how.
source : (2002-45) CIDA News Release August 31, 2002