United Nations System-wide Special Initiative on Africa (SIA)

Initiative spéciale du système des Nations Unies pour l'Afrique

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Mar 1996, by United Nations (UN), in a joint launch involving the then Chairman and Secretary-General of Organization of African Unity (OAU), the Heads of State of Ghana and Senegal, the Vice-President of Kenya and the support of other senior Africans, following adoption of Cairo Plan of Action on Re-launching Africa's Economic and Social Development (Cairo Plan), 1995, by Heads of State of OAU; formally endorsed as the implementation mechanism of United Nations New Agenda for the Development of Africa in the 1990s (UN-NADAF) at 37th session of the United Nations Committee for Programme and Coordination (CPC). Expected to render more effective the initiatives commenced by United Nations Programme of Action for African Economic Recovery and Development (UNPAAERD). Also referred to as UN System-wide Special Initiative on Africa and as UNSIA.


Ensure that United Nations' support for Africa's development efforts is sustained in a comprehensive and coherent manner; rationalize United Nations' assistance, including that of the Bretton Woods institutions, through more effective coordination, synergistic actions, capacity building and by facilitating genuine partnerships; focus on Africa's key advancement challenges and enlist international community assistance in meeting them through coordinated development commitment; honour the United Nations System's commitment to support Africa's development efforts as reflected in its own identified priority areas, through appropriate goal-oriented country and regional programmes around which true partnerships between Africa and the international community can be built; muster indispensable backing for Africa-determined priorities and efforts and secure pledged international commitment towards Africa determined goals; reinforce visionary African leadership, empower people, revalidate African development priorities set out in the 1995 Cairo (Egypt) Agenda for Action and, ultimately, build sustainable partnerships.

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Key programmes are tailored to country-specific needs and implemented within 13 development clusters, with UN agencies, including the Bretton Woods Institutions, taking specific leadership roles. Currently policy and programme impediments are being addressed so as to allow countries to access resource flows from Sector Investment Programmes (SIPs), including from the World Bank (Norwegian Trust Fund) and UNDP Support for Policy and Programme Development (SPPD). important sources for addressing Countries with low primary education enrolment rates will be the first beneficiaries of these funds. Similar arrangements are being examined for the health sector. Projects are monitored by ACC Steering Committee, co-chaired by the ECA Executive Secretary and the Administrator of UNDP. Interaction among partner agencies is facilitated through workshops and technical meetings and through communication and outreach programmes.


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Relations with Inter-Governmental Organizations

Relations with 12 inter-governmental organizations.
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Members in 26 countries
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Type I Classification

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Type II Classification

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Subjects *

  • Commerce
    • Finance
  • Cybernetics
    • Systems
  • International Relations
    • United Nations
  • Development
    • Development
  • Community
    • Community

UN Sustainable Development Goals **

GOAL 11: Sustainable Cities and CommunitiesGOAL 17: Partnerships to achieve the Goal



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* Subject classification is derived from the organization names and aims.
** UN SDGs are linked to the subject classification.

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