SYMPOSIUM FOOD SECURITY AND CLIMATE CHANGE: Advancing Access to food and proper nutrition on Political Economy of IGAD and EAC through SDGs 5TH MAY 2017 8:00 AM – 5:00PM | KENYA SCHOOL OF MONETARY STUDIES (KSMS) RUARAKA, NAIROBI



Action Green for Trade and Sustainable Development (AGTSD) in conjunction East Africa Civil Society Organization’s Forum (EACSOF) and Pan African Climate Justice Alliance (PACJA) wish to invite you to a symposium on Food Security and Climate Change,advancing Access to Food and Proper Nutrition on political Economy of IGAD and EAC through SDGs sustainable,” which will take place on the 5th May 2017 from 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM at Kenya School of Monetary Studies (KSMS).

The purpose of the event is to raise awareness to high level stakeholders in the current food and nutrition crisis facing IGAD and EAC regions. The event is also responding to Kenya Red Cross drought appeal, #WeAreAllKenyans. According to Red Cross Kenya, “It is expected that some counties in Kenya may slide into the emergency phase in March 2017 and push the number of affected people to four million if it doesn’t rain in the coming month[1]…”

The conference registration and participation fee is Kshs. 5,000.00 or $ 50.00. Participants can also pay more to this event. Registration fees covers participation in the Conference, the Conference articles that will be presented, participation to the coffee breaks and lunch. Part of the proceeds will go towards Kenya Red Cross Drought Appeal. The registration closes on the 30th April 2017 11:59 PM.

All Payments should be made to the following Bank Account


Banking Details:

Account Name: Action Green for Trade and Sustainable Development (AGTSD)

Bank Name: Bank of Africa

Account Number: 01076680003

Branch Name: Reinsurance Plaza





Or through Paybill



Paybill No. 972900 

Bank Account Number 01076680003



Kindly find attached draft conference note and the provisional programme.


We look forward to welcoming and exchanging ideas and experiences with you on food security in IGAD and EAC and share the Briefing Note with the relevant authorities. You are allowed to share this invitation letter to your wider network as much as possible. If you have any questions, you can email or call the undersigned










Eugene Jernigan

Trade Policy and Development

Africa WTO Coordinator


Action Green for Trade and Sustainable Development (AGTSD)


Mobile: 0722996837, 0733756224,


Office: 0202311895 0788323808,


This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Improving Market Access for the Least Developed Countries in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development

Improving Market Access for the Least Developed Countries in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development
08 October 2015
Goal 17
A new UNCTAD Policy Brief focuses on key questions concerning how to achieve target 17.11 of the Global Goals though improving market access conditions faced by the least developed countries.


The sustainable development goals (SDGs) in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development aim to double the share of global exports of the least developed countries (LDCs) by 2020.

The agenda also calls for providing duty-free and quota-free (DFQF) market access to LDCs as one of the main pillars of international support for export expansion by LDCs. DFQF market access is important, but will it be sufficient to double the export share of LDCs? And will it contribute to sustainable development?


What will genuinely improve the market access conditions faced by the least developed countries?

Considering market access conditions as one of the binding constraints to the export growth of LDCs in the post-2015 development agenda (along with constraints related to infrastructure, energy and transport), UNCTAD proposes the following package of six international actions:

  1. Provide duty-free and quota-free market access

  2. Implement the WTO ministerial decision on the services waiver and fulfil article IV.1 and 3 of the General Agreement on Trade in Services

  3. Reduce future trade costs by cooperating in SDG implementation

  4. Physically connect LDCs to the international market

  5. Target aid for trade to upgrade the productive and export capacity of LDCs

  6. Help LDCs use their export growth to achieve sustainable development

ICTSD Launch the Trade and Development Symposium at WTO Public Forum

ICTSD Launch the Trade and Development Symposium at WTO Public Forum


The Trade and Development Symposium (TDS) was launched today during the WTO Public Forum at a dedicated lunch briefing. The TDS will be held alongside the WTO's 10th Ministerial Conference 14-17 December.


ICTSD CEO Ricardo Meléndez-Ortiz opened the lunch discussion by introducing the event to a room full of participants, from high-level government officials to business representatives and thought leaders.  He pointed out that it is was an excellent opportunity to hold the event for the first time in Africa, paving the way for active engagement with multi-stakeholders in the region and designing possible solutions for the future.

ICTSD Managing Director, Deborah Vorhies then took the floor, explaining the 4 days planned of dynamic debate and discussions including the E15 Initiative, Nairobi Trade and Business Forum, high level plenaries and over 40 sessions tackling the most important issues on the sustainable development agenda.

ICTSD had the great pleasure of welcoming to the lunch discussion, Amina Mohamed, Cabinet Secretary, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, Kenya and Arancha Gonzalez, Executive Director of the International Trade Centre.  

Amina Mohamed, 
Arancha Gonzalez, Ricardo Meléndez-Ortiz

Ricardo Meléndez-Ortiz

Amina Mohamed, Deborah Vorhies,
Andrew Crosby

Ricardo Meléndez-Ortiz, 
Amina Mohamed, Arancha Gonzalez

DG Azevêdo: WTO members have identified a road to success in MC10


DG Azevêdo: WTO members have identified a road to success in Nairobi

Director-General Roberto Azevêdo addressed all WTO members today (8 October) at a meeting of the General Council in Geneva. He looked ahead to the prospects of success at the WTO’s 10th Ministerial Conference which will be held in Nairobi from 15-18 December this year, and reported on recent discussions in Geneva and other discussions, including among G20 trade ministers in Istanbul.



He reported that some areas of negotiations still seemed more likely to yield outcomes in Nairobi than others. These include: development issues with a particular focus on least-developed countries (LDCs); export competition in agriculture; and a set of possible outcomes to improve transparency in a number of areas. He said that work should be intensified on these issues, but also that this did not preclude identifying other outcomes wherever members thought they could be achieved.


The Director-General said:


“Through the various consultations over recent weeks I think members have identified a road to success in Nairobi. Clearly there are many obstacles along the way, but none in my view are insurmountable. 


“I think we have a general sense of what may be on the table in terms of substantive deliverables — though it is not a closed package, or a sure package. And I think we should recognize that agreement on the elements we are talking about would represent real progress. They would have a major economic and developmental impact, even though we must strive to do much more in the future. So now we need to firm these up with textual proposals that can be advanced through the negotiating groups.” 


The Director-General also asked members to look beyond Nairobi. Pointing to differences in members' positions on the future of the Doha Development Agenda (DDA), he said:


“Clearly these views will be extremely difficult to reconcile. However, I think we cannot disregard important commonalities when thinking about the way ahead. For example, I think we all agree that: i) we want to deliver something in Nairobi and that it should be meaningful; ii) whatever we deliver will not be agreed to be the end of negotiations on the DDA issues and; iii) we are still ready to keep pursuing the core issues of the DDA and their development dimension after Nairobi – although there is no agreement on how to do this, whether under the DDA framework or whether under a reformulated architecture. The question is whether we can – or whether we want – to capture these and other possible commonalities in a consensual text in Nairobi.”


He continued: “I would suggest that we start working on the basis that we will have a Ministerial Declaration that would take stock of the decisions taken at the 10th Ministerial Conference and that gives us guidance on our future work.” 


The meeting saw a debate on these issues, with a range of views being expressed. The Director-General concluded the conversation by suggesting there was a need for further consultations with members on the substance of any potential Ministerial Declaration and the process of producing such a document.

These consultations will begin in the coming days. Negotiations on the potential deliverables for Nairobi will also continue, mainly through the formal negotiating groups and other relevant committees. In addition, the Director-General will be consulting ministers at forthcoming meetings of the African Union, the African, Caribbean, Pacific Group of States and a meeting of Arab Trade Ministers.



  • Articles


    Say, the US Congress extends Agoa, will Africa gain more?


    In Summary


    • If the US Congress withdrew Agoa privileges, it would be deleterious to fragile economies, which are found in Africa. But more challenging is if the US Congress emulates the European Union Economic Partnership Agreement trade discussions with Agoa-eligible countries.

      The 2014 US-Africa leaders’ summit is to the African leaders, a new lease of life in trade and investment.

      The momentum at the summit shows that there is every indication the US Congress will approve the Agoa 2.0.

      At the the 2013 Agoa forum in Addis Ababa, among the participants was Michael Froman, who expressed a desire to launch a comprehensive review of the Agoa trade preference programme.

      The forum called for the seamless re-authorisation of Agoa by October 2014 for at least 15 years to ensure that trade with the US took place on a more predictable, in more reliable and on more legally secure basis that would inspire investors confidence.

      Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn requested African Union Commission and the United Nations Economic Commission for AfricaUC and UNECA team to put a review on Agoa, outlining Africa’s position.

      Taking Africa to the next level in trade and investment will need strong cooperation and proper strategies from the African leaders, more so an ‘authority on trade and investment’ equivalent to USTR.

      This is because Africa is a conglomeration of fragmented nations and having one common goal is usually the biggest challenge. Also, Africa is the world’s most expensive region with which to do business.

      Part of the proper strategies will be to put the agenda of mainstreaming trade policies in their respective countries, eventually making Africa an equal partner with the US, that is, having a possibility of free trade agreement.

      The African leadership needs to focus on the supply side constraints such as capacity constraints, infrastructure challenges, institutional inefficiency, economic setbacks, marketing and merchandising inexperience, political risk and problem related to US market requirements.

      The exponential growth of Agoa, which was signed into law in May 2000, provides for duty – free and largely quote-free access to the US market for products originating from Agoa eligible countries.

      In 2008, before the financial meltdown trade had reached $100 billion, the aggregate exports from Agoa eligible countries stood at $ 81.9 Billion.

      African exports have grown over 500 per cent over the decade increasing from $8.15 billion in 2001 to $53.8 billion in 2011. More than 1,835 products are on the list for trade between US and Africa.

      The absurdity of this pattern of trade is that extractive industries (crude petroleum, oil and gas) remained the dominant African exports to the US under Agoa.

      More shocking is that Nigeria, South Africa and Angola accounted for 80 per cent of the total exports to the US.

      The question is: Is Agoa remedial to African trade? But the catch-22 situation would be if the US Congress withdrew Agoa privileges, it would be deleterious to fragile economies, which are found in Africa. But more challenging is if the US Congress emulates the European Union Economic Partnership Agreement trade discussions with Agoa-eligible countries.

      In 2000–2009, Agoa exports of textiles and apparel from sub-Saharan African increased by 23 per cent from $748 million to $922 million. But most of the investments in Africa’s textile and apparel industries mainly came from Asian countries.

      Why are American firms not increasing investments in Africa? Should Africa require an extension of Agoa, where only a few countries are benefitting?

      The African Union Commission white paper proposes a number of strategies: Increase of product coverage to 100 per cent duty-free, quota-free access that would stimulate Africa’s exports to the US; make third country fabric provision an integral part of the revised Agoa; revise rules of origin to more simpler and flexible ones; unilateral withdrawal of country eligibility; graduation provision should be done away with; promoting US investment in Africa by providing targeted tax incentives; streamline US a to African countries; lay foundations for US–African trade agreement and maintaining momentum on Agoa forum.

      Will the US Congress allow Agoa eligible countries to enter into global supply chains and distribution network via allowing them 100 per cent duty free quota free (DFQF) access to the US?

      The white paper suggests comprehensive and enviable solutions but it will be interesting to follow how the US Congress and Senate will respond to Africa seeking re-authorisation of Agoa by October.

      Eugene Jernigan



Written on 23/04/2019, 12:00
ministerial-conference-nairobi-2015  MINISTERIAL CONFERENCES   Eleventh WTO Ministerial Conference WTO members have agreed that the organization’s Eleventh Ministerial Conference (MC11)...
Copyright © 2014. Action Green for Trade and Sustainable Development. Designed by
University of Nairobi