Market access & trade issues in the Horn

The technical brief (33pp) “Market access and trade issues affecting the drylands in the Horn of Africa” (2013) was prepared by Yacob Aklilu, Peter Little, Hussein Mahmoud and John McPeak for the Technical Consortium for Building Resilience to Drought in the Horn of Africa, hosted by the CGIAR Consortium in partnership with the FAO Investment Centre. It addresses the rationale and priorities for investment in trade in livestock and other agricultural commodities, e.g. market development and access, cross-border trade, and sanitary and food-safety standards. It notes that livestock markets function reasonably well in the Horn. Trade in livestock and livestock products in Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, South Sudan and Sudan equals about USD 1 billion in foreign exchange in many years, and probably 5–6 times that amount in local currencies. Live animal and meat exports, especially from Ethiopia, Somalia and Sudan, have increased rapidly as has domestic trade centred on key urban markets such as Addis Ababa, Khartoum, Mombasa and Nairobi.

The brief describes actions that can be taken to ensure that producers in the lowlands of the Horn benefit from the growing trade opportunities. It brings best-practice examples of markets and market agents who successfully adapt to new opportunities and changes. Key challenges are reconciling marketing objectives with the production goals of pastoral producers, who hold more female than male animals in their herds given their production objectives; increasing competition for the natural resources by other alternative uses; dealing with livestock diseases and related quarantines; and overcoming a lack of value-adding techniques. Land tenure, production and marketing issues are interrelated priority areas that support trade from the lowlands, and policies need to be integrated that work in all three domains. Policies are proposed for improving regional mobility of livestock, pastoral production and cross-border livestock marketing.

Posted on 21 April 2013 in Pastoralism & Marketing, Pastoralism & Mobility, Pastoralism, Policy & Power, Value of Pastoralism