July 2016
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 Video guest: Erich Schaitza




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EDITO
Thursday, 28 July 2016

Last week, the EU’s most senior foreign affairs, development and emergency aid officials travelled to Addis Ababa to pledge a further €122 million in European aid to head off the deteriorating humanitarian crisis in the country from heading into a full-blown famine. It was a mark of the gravity of the El Niño weather phenomenon, a rising of surface sea temperatures, exacerbated by climate change, which has the contradictory affects of increasing both flooding, and – in large parts of East Africa and the Horn of Africa – droughts. Ethiopia – a country of some 100 million people – has been the worst affected, with more than 10% of its population reliant on food aid for survival.

Wednesday, 13 April 2016

The sugarcane industry's plans to revitalise cane farming will hinge on the assistance that will be offered by the European Union, says Fiji Sugar Corporation executive chairman Abdul Khan. The EU announced earlier this month its commitment of more than $47million over four years to aid the agriculture and sugarcane industry's post Severe Tropical Cyclone Winston recovery efforts. However, what was not revealed was how the funds would be released, a timeframe for aid delivery and how much each sector would receive. "We are still talking to the EU and obviously they have said they will help agriculture and sugar," said Mr Khan.

Tuesday, 12 April 2016

Harvesting a crop in Cameroon’s Far North Region is becoming an increasingly uncertain proposition. Armed conflict between Boko Haram militants and Cameroon’s armed forces in the region has made it difficult for some farmers to access their fields, deepening food security, said Felix Gomez, the World Food Programme’s country director (...) Just as problematic, climate change is gradually rendering the traditional agricultural calendar unreliable, making just getting in a crop hard work, farmers in the region say.

Monday, 11 April 2016

The European Commission announces €122.5 million to help Ethiopia deal with a deteriorating humanitarian situation caused by the El Niño extreme weather phenomenon. Today the European Commission has announced €122.5 million for Ethiopia to address the immediate needs of people affected by the worsening humanitarian situation caused by one of the most severe extreme El Niño weather phenomenon on record. This new support aims to combine a humanitarian response and early recovery assistance with initiatives that address the root causes of fragility and vulnerability

Friday, 08 April 2016

Ethiopia is being hit hard by one the most severe El Niño phenomenon on record. Numbers speak for themselves – in the past year, the number of food insecure people has increased from 2.9 million to over 10 million at present, write Neven Mimica and Christos Stylianides.This is on top of the almost 8 million chronically food insecure people in the country (...) Since the winter of 2015, the EU has mobilised around €44 million of humanitarian aid to help the victims of El Niño in Ethiopia. In addition, we have just announced an additional €24 million to respond to emergency needs of over 730 000 refugees and some 400 000 Internally Displaced People.

Sugar production in Mozambique will decline this year because of the drought hitting sugar production areas in the south and centre of the country. According to Joao Jeque, the executive director of the Mozambican Association of Sugar Producers (APAMO), in 2015 the sector produced 3.3 million tonnes of sugar cane, but the drought guarantees that this amount cannot be produced in the current campaign. Jeque was speaking on Friday at an international sugar conference in Maputo, which was discussing how to improve the production and marketing of sugar

Monday, 04 April 2016

The Netherlands has today imposed a first-ever sanction on a Dutch company for violating the European Timber Regulation. The sanction follows a Greenpeace investigation into the controversial Cameroonian timber trader CCT, who is sourcing timber from companies involved in illegally logging and exporting timber to several countries in Europe, including the Netherlands.(...) CCT is trading in timber sourced from highly destructive logging operations, several of which were exposed to be involved in illegal logging according to a Greenpeace report published last year. Greenpeace traced the timber from CCT to many importers in Europe, including one Dutch company, Fibois BV in Purmerend.

Wednesday, 30 March 2016

An Italian engineering company has been reported to the OECD because the dam it is building is set to destroy the livelihoods of hundreds of thousands of people in Kenya and Ethiopia. Survival International (SI)‚ a global movement for the rights of tribal peoples‚ reported engineering giant Salini to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development over the construction of the dam‚ which has cut off the Omo River’s regular flooding‚ which 100‚000 people rely on to water their crops and livestock.

Severe Tropical Cyclone Winston's impact on Fiji's agriculture sector and homes total over $409million. The agriculture sector incurred a loss of $208.3m while damage on homes was about $201m. The agriculture assessment is $82.32m more than the $US60m (approximately $F125.98m) estimated by the UN when it launched its 90-day flash appeal two weeks ago. Ministry of Agriculture permanent secretary Uraia Waibuta said the damage to the sector included crops, livestock and infrastructure, but excluding the sugar sector. The sugarcane industry incurred a loss of around $120m, $87m of which was estimated for crop damage and $12m for farmers' residences.


The Fiji Crop and Livestock Council (FCLC) had the opportunity last week to listen to registered commodity farmer members on the challenges Tropical Cyclone Winston imposed on their respective commodities.The Farmers’ National Committee Association’s planning workshop that was held in Suva turned into a needs assessment for the heads of national commodity associations and member farmers. FCLC Chairman Simon Cole said the dialogue provided a very structured and common sense approach to the economic recovery of the agricultural sector for all the commodities that FCLC represents.