Mauritania, Morocco and Tunisia. These three African countries have in common the implementation of the "Salam" project focusing on sustainable development. The initiative has just received funding worth 3 million euros from the French Development Agency (AFD). It is part of an incubator programme on the southern shore of the Mediterranean.
The French Development Agency (AFD) is determined to support the implementation of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in Africa. It is within this framework that the financial institution is granting 3 million euros to the “Salam” project, which aims to unearth sustainable innovations developed by civil society organisations (CSOs).
The initiative of the Laboratoire de l’économie sociale et solidaire (Lab’ess), based in Tunisia, has been running since 2012 in three African countries, namely Mauritania, Morocco and Tunisia. “We want to give more support to civil society and local initiatives by Mediterranean actors because citizens represent the third pillar, after the State and the private sector, and contribute to the achievement of the SDGs and to the dialogue on public policies,” AFD says.
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At a time when the Arab Spring has affected the economies of most of these countries, Rachid Abidi, Director of Lab’ess, explains that AFD’s grant is “a first step over three years, with the aim of reaching ten countries and supporting 260 projects by 2032. As a result, two calls for projects will be launched in these three countries in 2023 and 2024 to target projects with a sustainable development impact. The selected projects will focus on sustainable cities (SDG 11) and sustainable consumption and production (SDG 12), but also on waste management, circular economy, sustainable food, smart agriculture and energy transition.