The Foundation promotes regional dialogue and current priorities include encouraging better use of water resources in the Congo Basin to promote sustainable development and counteract deforestation and seeking ways to reduce migratory pressures in West Africa.
The Congo and its tributaries are a vital resource for all the countries of the Congo Basin. The Basin holds 8% of the world’s forest-based carbon so it also has a key role to play in helping to prevent global warming. Generating sustainable economic development for the peoples of the region while reducing deforestation should be therefore be seen not only as a top priority for the Congo Basin countries but as a global priority as well.
The Brazzaville Foundation introduced the Congo Basin Blue Fund initiative in 2016. The Blue Fund is intented to finance sustainable development projects and promote a "Blue Economy" using the renewable ressources of the waters of the Congo and its tributaries. Potential sectors include energy, fishing, improved river navigation and the creation of small ports and irrigation and drainage offers the chance to stimulate economic activity that doe not rely on continuing deforestation. The initiative was taken up the Republic of Congo and formally presented at the COP 22\16.
At a Ministerial meeting at Oyo in the Republic of Congo on 9 March, eight Central African countries (Angola, Burundi, Chad, the Central African Republic, the Democratic of Congo, Gabon, the Republic of Congo and Rwanda) and Morocco, as President of COP 22, signed a Memorandum of Understanding in which they agreed to establish the Congo Blue Fund. Much remains to be done to make the Blue Fund a reality but this was a crucial step foward.
WEST AFRICAN MIGRATION PROJECT
There are many different drivers of migration, but there are regions where the issues are similar and a common approach would be advantageous.
The Foundation is proposing an initiative which would examine migration from the point of view of a group of West African countries and identify what actions they can take to streng-then their economies and thus reduce migration at source in return for access to interna-tional funding.
The emphasis would be on practical projects which increase economic opportunities by promoting investment, especially by the private sector, job creation, skills development and business self-help programmes. The aim would also be to strengthen regional economic cooperation.
The initiative should be seen more broadly as a contribution to peace, stability and sus-tainable development in West Africa.
OUR CONSERVATION WORK
The Foundation is partnering the NGO, Stop Ivory, to promote the Elephant Protection In-itiative (EPI). This initiative, launched by Botswana, Chad, Ethiopia, Gabon and Tanzania, brings together African states, intergovernmental organisations, NGOs, private sector and private citizens to work in partnership to protect African elephants by stopping poaching and the illegal ivory trade. Through its high level contacts, the Foundation is currently working with Stop Ivory to persuade more African countries to sign and implement the EPI.
The Foundation is also examining a project to protect the endangered manatees in the Senegal River in West Africa. The aim would be to assess the current condition of mana-tees in the Senegal River and the threats to their survival, increase local awareness of their ecological importance and find ways to protect their habitats.
OUR CONFLICT RESOLUTION AND PREVENTION WORK
The Foundation is involved in conflict prevention because our experience has shown that independent, impartial and discreet efforts to build dialogue and understanding are vital in achieving peaceful solutions to potential conflicts in Africa and further afield.
The Foundation aims to act as an honest broker, helping protagonists to find ways to talk to each other and arrive at a common basis for a peaceful future. Building on the experience of its Advisers in international negotiations, the Foundation’s work is conducted in strict confidence, through frank and honest dialogue and on the principle that nothing is agreed until everything is agreed.