MAPLE 2020: Consolidating lessons from the implementation of CAADP Commitments six years after the Malabo Declaration

The 2020 edition of the Malabo Agricultural Policy Learning Event (MAPLE) took place December 8 and 9. Nearly 200 participants drawn from across Africa and representing the Public Sector, Private Sector, farmer groups, civil society, youth, academia and media took part in the virtual event convened by the African Union Commission (AUC), African Union Development Agency (AUDA-NEPAD) and partners. Facilitated by Policy LINK, MAPLE 2020 offered a platform for detailed discourse on continental agricultural policy processes - highlighting progress, lessons learned, and developing collective actions to drive the Malabo Agenda.

The Malabo Declaration was signed in 2014 as Africa’s re-commitment to the CAADP principles and goals first adopted under the Maputo Declaration. The Malabo Declaration includes seven commitment areas that underpin holistic agricultural transformation. A unique aspect of the Malabo Agenda is that it specifically calls for mutual accountability to actions and results, and requires AU Member States to conduct a Biennial Review (BR) of progress based on the CAADP Results Framework. Member States submit data on 47 indicators spread across the seven Malabo Commitments in a process coordinated by the African Union and Regional Economic Communities (RECs).

The second and most recent BR Report, and which anchored MAPLE 2020 discussions, showed that 36 Member States had made positive progress towards achieving the commitments. But this progress was slow as only four countries were adjudged to have made enough progress to be on-track to achieve targets by 2025. The report also saw 49 of 55 Member States reporting data. However, there were still significant gaps in the data submitted and concerns about the quality of some of the data.

Key highlights of the 2020 MAPLE dialogue were:

  1. Joint exploration of the data to understand BR performance and the policy implications of that performance;

  2. The urgent need to support the development and implementation of National Agricultural Investment Plans designed to deliver on the Malabo Declaration commitments;

  3. Case studies, discussions and recommendations on how to use the results of the BR to inform policy and programming in government and among non-state actors;

  4. Recommendations on how to improve country data systems and the quality of data generated through the BR to build confidence among stakeholders;

  5. Discussions and recommendations on intensified advocacy and communications using the Biennial Review report;

  6. Recommendations on the need for technical support to enable countries to implement programmes on agriculture.

A comprehensive report including recommendations will be produced from the deliberations and will inform the design and implementation of the BR process going forward.