7 February 2022
This year’s AU summit is being held under the theme “Strengthening Resilience in Nutrition and Food Security on the African Continent: Strengthening Agro-Food Systems, Health and Social Protection Systems for the Acceleration of Human, Social and Economic Development.”
The African Union Theme of the Year 2022, the Year of Nutrition for 2022 will focus on continental efforts towards fast tracking the achievement of the Malabo Targets of reducing stunting in children to 10% and underweight to 5%.
As part of the long-term vision set out in Agenda 2063, the Assembly of Heads of State and Government of the African Union has adopted common African aspirations, drawing on the potential of its populations, in particular, a human capital well-nourished citizens and in good health with a particular emphasis on women, adolescents and children.
Human capital is key for development as it leads to improved lives for individuals, higher earnings and improved incomes for countries.
Africa was estimated to have a population of 1.25 billion in 2018 and is the fastest urbanizing continent, with a growth rate of more than 2.6 percent.
The large youth population presents a potential demographic dividend that, if adequately leveraged with the right investments, could contribute to accelerating sustainable and equitable development.
Over the years, the under-5 mortality has reduced by more than 50 percent between 1994 to 2019; fertility rates have declined from 6 to 4 children per women. However, compared to the rest of the world, the malnutrition remains high in the continent and undernutrition is particularly an underlying cause of almost half of child deaths.
African Countries will place emphasis on working towards achieving the objectives of the Africa Regional Nutrition Strategy 2015-2025 which aims to achieve by the year 2025
• 40% reduction of the number of children under 5 years who are stunted
• 50% reduction of anaemia in women of child-bearing age
• 30% reduction of low birth weight
• No increase of overweight in African children under 5 years of age
• Increase exclusiveu breast-feeding rates during the first six months to at least 50%
• Reduce and maintain childhood wasting to less than 5%