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Africa Renewal
From Africa Renewal: 
A farmer harvests wheat in Chichaoua Province, Morocco. Photo: Alamy/Jake Lyell
A farmer harvests wheat in Chichaoua Province, Morocco. Photo: Alamy/Jake Lyell

Morocco:  Climate change efforts bear fruit  

By Pavithra Rao

Morocco’s climate change adaptation plan, launched in 2008, is now bearing fruit, says the United Nations.

The UN’s special rapporteur on the right to food, Hilal Elver, says that the plan Maroc vert (PMV) or the Green Morocco Plan has resulted in an increase in agricultural productivity, although she urged the country to provide more widespread support for small-scale farmers.

The PMV focuses on modernizing large-scale farms with high added value, supporting small-scale farms and combating rural poverty. Since 2008, Morocco has invested about 150 billion dirhams ($16.3 billion) in more than 700 projects on mechanization, irrigation and soil fertilization, while it is expected to invest another 20 billion dirhams (US$2.1 billion) over the coming years in 550 community projects, according to data from the country’s Ministry of Economy and Finance.

“The Plan Maroc Vert has created an irreversible momentum without precedent,” says Michael Hage, the former Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) ” representative in Morocco and the current coordinator of the FAO Subregional Office for North Africa. “It has played a determing role in food security and is inspiring several other African countries.

Morocco’s agricultural sector has been growing at roughly 7% per year since 2008, with a 34% uptick in exports and 11% increase in farmland use, according to estimates by FAO. Two years ahead of schedule, the country met the Millennium Development Goal of halving extreme poverty and hunger by 2015.

By 2020 Morocco will reap a triple win of adapting to the reality of climate change, lifting itself out of poverty and creating new opportunities, according to the World Bank.  

Migration within Africa

International migration, especially from Africa to Europe and elsewhere, usually gets negative publicity. Can anything good come out of migration?

Yes, according to a new report to be launched in May 2018 by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD). Intra-African migration, if properly managed, can contribute greatly to the continent’s development by boosting trade, generating jobs, promoting entrepreneurship and innovation and reducing poverty.

The Economic Development in Africa Report 2018, subtitled Migration and Structural Transformation, focuses on how host and home countries on the continent can better harness the economic benefits of intra-African migration.

According to the UNCTAD report, most migration in Africa occurs within the continent—and yields significant benefits for the continent and its people.