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Development of an African Ecolabelling Mechanism

The development of regional labelling programmes that enhances the environmental profile of African products and improve their market access is one of the key activities identified under the African 10-Year Framework Programme on Sustainable Consumption and Production. With this as a basis, the Fourth African Roundtable on Sustainable Consumption and production (ARSCP-5) identified the development of an African Ecolabelling Mechanism as one of the key priority activities to be undertaken at the regional level. The overall objective of this activity is to develop an African eco-labelling scheme that promotes appropriate environmental and health related standards within the design and production of African products and promote better markets access for African products in the regional and global markets. In order to achieve this:

  • A regional assessment on existing Ecolabelling initiatives in the region was conducted and a report was produced;
  • A regional Expert Meeting was organized in collaboration with the African Union and UNECA which reviewed the assessment report and made recommendations on the way forward;
  • The summary outcome of the assessment and the regional meeting was printed as a booklet and distributed to different forums including the Council of African Ministers of Industries and the General Assembly of the African Standardization Organization.
  • The structure and function of the AEM were developed in consultation with the African Union Commission (AUC) and the African Organisation for Standardisation (ARSO).
  • A programme document for the establishment of the Secretariat of the AEM was prepared on the basis of the strategy document and funding for the implementation of the regional mechanism was secured through the German Ministry of Environment.
  • The General Assembly of ARSO supported the launching of the AEM as a mechanism related to the African Standards Harmonisation Model (ASHAM) that was endorsed by the Council of African Ministers of Industries (CAMI).
  • A series of consultations was carried out with the key partners and promoters of the mechanism and a consensus has been reached to manage the mechanism through a board that will be chaired by the AUC and the office of the mechanism to be based under ARSO.
  • The ‘Johannesburg Declaration on Environment for Sustainable Development in Africa’, which was adopted by the 12th Session of AMCEN has requested the AUC to work with all relevant stakeholders on the development and launching of the AEM.
  • Funding for the launching and implementation of the AEM has been secured from the German Climate Change Fund through the German Ministry of Environment.
  • Key technical staff of the AEM Secretariat has been recruited

For more information on the activities of the Industry Office please contact:

Mr. Patrick Mwesigye,
Industry Affairs Officer,
Tel: 254-20 7624630
Fax: 254-20 7623928
send an email

Meetings

Stakeholder meeting of the AEM,
December 2009, Nairobi, Kenya

First Executive Board meeting of the AEM,
February 2010, Nairobi, Kenya

Sounding and Executive Board meeting of the AEM, September 2010, Nairobi, Kenya

Sounding Board and Stakeholders meeting of the AEM, December 2010, Nairobi, Kenya

Regional Expert Meeting on the Development of an African Eco-labelling Scheme,
11-13 June 2007, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
[ Summary Outcome Report ]


Publications

Ecolabelling as a potential marketing tool for African products [English]

 


The African 10 Year Framework Programme on Sustainable Consumption and Production [English] [Français]


Further Resources
African Roundtable on Sustainable Consumption and Production (ARSCP) Website

UNEP - Division of Technology, Industry and Economics Website
United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN-DESA) Website