November 02, 2021 – The Ministry of Agriculture & Rural Equipment, holding the chair of the Climate Smart Agriculture in Senegal River Valley Project funded by Qatar Fund for Development, gathered its members for the Annual Steering Committee Meeting.
In Senegal, the development of rice production is one of the main pillars of public policy, as national needs for rice are still increasing and reliant on the international market. Senegal is one of the main importing countries in the West Africa region and the rice consumption per capita is estimated at 60kg-70kg annually with between 20-30% covered by national production (600 000tons/year). It is in this context that the National Program of Rice Self-Sufficiency through the National Society of Land Development & Exploitation (SAED) benefitted from long-term financing support from partners. Through this support, infrastructure was developed to help cover the needs of the Accelerated & Adjusted Actions Plan – PAP2A for self sufficiency of rice production in Senegal.
The project for Solar Irrigation for Climate Smart Agriculture in Senegal River Valley aims to reduce poverty & GHG emissions, enhance rice farmers living conditions, especially for women and youth, through the introduction of climate smart agriculture practices. Furthermore, the project helps to enhance climate resiliency and increase agricultural productivity.
The steering committee for this project, chaired by the Ministry of Agriculture & Rural Equipment, holds an annual meeting in line with the mandate conferred to members :
- Provide guidance and instructions to project team for the execution of the project activities and support the team to identify urgent needs.
- Evaluate and approve project-related documentation, in particular technical and financial execution reports (budgets & workplans).
- Identify opportunities for the project
The annual meeting was held on November 2, 2021, with the presence of the members, including the Ministries Agriculture & Rural Equipment, Energy, Environment and Sustainable Development; Economy & Cooperation, Finances, Land Management in River Valley Society- SAED; Strategic Sovereign Investment Fund; Banque Agricole; and the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI). The objective of the session was to highlight the realized activities and discuss the perspectives as indicated in the annual workplan.
Deputy Director-General of SAED delivered the welcoming remarks of the meeting, sharing “This project is in the line with our mission statement number 3 which mentions the necessity to implement concrete action regarding the transition to solar energy in the river valley.”
Romain Brillie, GGGI Senegal Country Representative, provided additional details on the project sharing, “This project is implemented at a momentum in which Senegal is engaged for operationalizing the Adjusted & Accelerated Action Plans PAP2A with the objective for achieving and economic recovery to limit the negative impacts of COVID-19.”
As part of his opening remarks, the National Coordinator of Rice Self Sufficiency, on behalf on the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Equipment, recalled the ambition of the government to support projects and structure to match the needs of local producers in when designing agricultural policies to ensure the development of this field.
The Project Team delivered a prensentation during the second part of the session to emphasize activities that have been realized during this year, including feasibility studies, developing a business model for a solar energy pumping station, the selection of criteria CSA practices, and mapping the 12 selected area for the solar energy pumping stations.
The members approved the workplan and the selection made based on an inclusive criteria with recommendations from beneficiaries and union producers. A future on-site mission is planned in November to meet union beneficiaries for a local workshop on the practices intended to be implement for the project.
The project agreement was signed as an official partnership between SAED & GGGI for the implementation of the solar irrigation system.