From transport to health, food to construction and textiles, plastics are among the most abundant materials in our economy. Globally, the plastic industry is valued at USD 600 billion and provides employment to millions of people worldwide. But plastic pollution has become a crisis of monumental proportions, with 8 million tons ending up in oceans annually. Around the world, different regions face unique challenges ranging from community awareness to waste and recycling capacity, to weak stakeholder engagement.
Many Sahel countries in Africa are expected to nearly double their population by 2030 due to high fertility rates. Meanwhile, since 1970 in Bangladesh, which has a similar religious context and other shared development challenges as the Sahel, the fertility rate declined from 6.3 to 2.3 births per woman and the rate of contraceptive users increased from 7% to 62.4% in 2011.
In order to establish a red meat export initiative to fulfill its potential to be one of the top livestock industries, the Government of Mauritania learned from Zambia’s experience. Lessons from the study tour resulted in policy changes; some were integrated into a feasibility study. Mauritania is being positioned to attract external funding and investment for this project.
To ensure universal access to affordable telecommunications services, Tunisian and Mauritanian officials engaged in an exchange with Turkey on ways to reform and liberalize their telecom sectors, with an emphasis on broadband. They learned how to open up telecom markets to competition, align regulatory frameworks to EU standards, and balance investment incentives with protecting competition in fiber optic networks.