Food Security Portal Event
Virtual Policy Dialogue

Enhancing Cross-Border Trade and Food Security through Data and Information

Event Report
Zoom Meeting
IFPRI, ASARECA, and Food Security Portal

The COVID-19 pandemic has unleashed a global health crisis causing deep disruptions to and widespread impacts on food systems, social systems, and economic development.

The scale of the pandemic’s expected impact on poverty, food security, nutrition, and the world economy is unprecedented and requires strong and coordinated interventions across both developed and developing countries. Fundamental to the development and implementation of effective and coherent policy responses to COVID-19 that support recovery, rebuilding, and resilience, is the availability of high-quality, up-to-date data. As a result, developing countries, which tend to have weak institutions, limited capacity and resources, are posed to face the pandemic’s most devastating and long-lasting consequences.

To address the challenges and opportunities for improving data, policy responses, and regional coordination in light of the current pandemic and the dire stakes it raises for food security and nutrition, this policy dialogue took a closer look at Eastern and Central Africa sub-region. The theme of this regional policy dialogue was data and information sharing, with a focus on regional cross-border trade of agricultural commodities and inputs and its implications for food security in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The target audience included, among others, government/ministry representatives, National
Agricultural Research Institutions, private sector, farmers’ organizations, regional and sub-regional research organizations and in-country development partners.

The program was as follows:

Moderator: Dr. Teunis van Rheenen, Head of Partnerships and Business Development, IFPRI
Speakers: Dr. Rob Vos, Director, IFPRI and Prof. Jean Jacques Mbonigaba Muhinda, Executive Director, ASARECA

Data and information sharing in COVID-19 times
Presentation by Prof. Jean Jacques Mbonigaba Muhinda, Executive Director, ASARECA

Regional cross-border agricultural trade and the implications of COVID-19
Presentation by Dr. Antoine Bouet, Senior Research Fellow, IFPRI

Panel reflections from national and regional representatives
Presentation by Commissioner Emmanuel Mutahunga, Department of External Trade, Ministry of Trade, Industry and Cooperatives, Uganda
Presentation by Ambassador Kipyego Cheluget, Assistant Secretary General, COMESA
Presentation by Dr. Fadel Ndiame, Deputy President, AGRA

Find the summary report here.