U.S. President Joe Biden has named Liberia and seven other African countries to benefit food subsidy under the American government’s Feed the Future Expansion programme.
According to the U.S. Embassy near Monrovia, President Biden announced the expansion of the Feed the Future program at the G7 Leaders’ Summit in Germany.
Other countries listed to benefit under the program include Democratic Republic of the Congo, Madagascar, Malawi, Mozambique, Rwanda, Tanzania, and Zambia.
The exercise is under the U.S. government’s global hunger and food security initiative aimed at reaching new countries and intensify efforts to directly address and mitigate the impacts of recent shocks to global food security and nutrition.
“These countries were prioritized based on a combination of underlying food insecurity, poverty and malnutrition, including impacts from Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, as well as the opportunity – and each government’s commitment – to tackle these deep-rooted issues in partnership with us”, the U.S. Embassy says.
It notes that in these countries, the U.S. government takes a coordinated approach to its investments and in turn, paves the way for further resources and investments from other actors, such as the private sector, donors and local governments.
According to the release, countries already reeling from increased poverty, hunger and malnutrition as a result of COVID-19, climatic shocks, severe drought in the Horn of Africa, and protracted conflict now face further suffering from Russia’s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine.
“This expands Feed the Future’s global footprint from 12 to 20 target countries and delivers on President Biden’s commitment in September 2021 of $5 billion over five years to end global hunger and malnutrition and build sustainable, resilient food systems.”
Feed the Future programming responds to each country’s level of need and harnesses the power of agriculture to drive economic growth and transform food systems in the country and the region.
To respond to the global food security crisis, Feed the Future is focusing on four major lines of effort: mitigating the global fertilizer shortage, increasing investments in agricultural capacity and resilience, cushioning the macroeconomic shock and impact on poor people, and sustaining high-level global political engagement
It says as a new Feed the Future target country, the U.S. Embassy through USAID/Liberia is contributing to these efforts by strengthening its coordination and collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture thru technical assistance and policy support and expanding programming to address the key drivers of food insecurity by building household resilience to shocks and stressors, improving agricultural practices, and supporting access and use of agricultural inputs as well as improved varieties, appropriate technology, equipment, and infrastructure.
Other support initiatives are establishing opportunities for agricultural businesses by co-investing in promising enterprises, strengthening business services, and investing in promising entrepreneurs and initiatives to address Liberia’s food security challenges; and lastly, investing in the next generation of farmers and entrepreneurs by expanding school feeding programs in coordination with the Ministry of Education, and promoting agricultural training in schools.
Funded at more than $1 billion per year, Feed the Future has existing technical expertise, programs and partners in more than 35 countries being leveraged to mitigate the impacts of this latest global shock and address the root causes of poverty, hunger and malnutrition. Press Release