Doing Business sheds light on how easy or difficult it is for a local entrepreneur to open and run a small to medium-size business when complying with relevant regulations. It measures and tracks changes in regulations affecting 10 areas in the life cycle of a business: starting a business, dealing with construction permits, getting electricity, registering property, getting credit, protecting investors, paying taxes, trading across borders, enforcing contracts and resolving insolvency.
This report highlights the great potential of the agribusiness sector in Africa by drawing on experience in Africa as well as other regions. The evidence demonstrates that good policies, a conducive business environment, and strategic support from governments can help agribusiness reach its potential. Africa is now at a crossroads, from which it can take concrete steps to realize its potential or continue to lose competitiveness, missing a major opportunity for increased growth, employment, and food security. The report pursues several lines of analysis.
A recent overview of World Bank social safety net programs and gender highlighted the need for greater consideration of intra-household dynamics in the design of social protection programs (Bardasi 2014). During program design, decisions have to be made about who to target, how much and how often to give cash transfers, and what measures should accompany cash transfers. These decisions become even more complex in the context of polygamous households. The conclusions above are meant to illustrate important links between intra-household dynamics and the design of cash transfer programs.
More than 200 million people living in dryland regions of Sub-Saharan Africa make their living from agriculture. Most are exposed to weather shocks, especially drought, that can decimate their incomes, destroy their assets, and plunge them into a poverty trap from which it is difficult to emerge. Their lack of resilience in the face of these shocks can be attributed in large part to the poor performance of agriculture on which their livelihood depends. Opportunities exist to improve the fortunes of farming households in the drylands.
Dryland regions in Sub-Saharan Africa are home to one-half of the region’s population and three-quarters of its poor. Poor both in natural resources and in assets and income, the inhabitants of drylands are highly vulnerable to droughts and other shocks. Despite a long history of interventions by governments, development agencies, and civil society organizations, there have been no sustained large-scale successes toward improving the resilience of drylands dwellers.
Prospects for Livestock-Based Livelihoods in Africa’s Drylands examines the challenges and opportunities facing the livestock sector and the people who depend on livestock in the dryland regions of Sub-Saharan Africa.
USAID’s Resilience and Economic Growth in the Sahel – Enhanced Resilience (REGIS-ER) program works to increase the resilience of chronically vulnerable people, households, communities and systems in targeted agro-pastoral and marginal agriculture livelihood zones in Niger and Burkina Faso. This will be achieved through three interwoven objectives: increased and sustainable well-being, strengthened institutions and governance, and improved nutrition and health. Each of these objectives constitutes a core component of the REGIS-ER program.
Under the Evaluation, Research and Communication (ERC) project, USAID is conducting a pilot project to support the initial start-up phase of a National Land Observatory (NLO) in Burkina Faso. The goal of the NLO is to strengthen Burkina Faso’s land governance and improve transparency in land transactions to promote greater consistency with the Voluntary Guidelines on the Responsible Governance of Tenure of Land, Fisheries and Forests (VGs).
Under the Evaluation, Research and Communications (ERC) project, USAID launched the Mobile Applications to Secure Tenure (MAST) Pilot in Burkina Faso. MAST uses a simple android app and a semi-crowdsourced methodology to facilitate the mapping and documentation of land in a more efficient, transparent, and affordable manner. USAID has already successfully piloted MAST in Tanzania, where it is now being scaled across an entire district.
The development of irrigation is one of the priority strategies in the Sahel countries to tackle poverty and food insecurity. At a time when governments are once again committing to increase irrigable areas, it seemed relevant to analyze, in line with the ECOWAS guidelines, the results achieved in large irrigated schemes developed in the 1980s and 1990s to draw lessons for future developments.