The 20th High Level Forum between Government of Ethiopia and DAG was held on 4-5 April 2019 at Kuriftu Resort, Bishoftu. The purpose of the retreat was to focus on the bigger picture, provide analyses of long-term trends and offer next generation interventions for Ethiopia’s lowlands.

There are many differences between the lowlands and other parts of Ethiopia, manifested in political, geographic and fiscal differences impacting livelihoods in the lowlands. The retreat reviewed development challenges and prospects in Ethiopian lowlands, looking into long term solutions. The retreat served as an initial step towards a shared understanding of the analysis on building resilience in the lowlands done by DFID and World Bank. This was to enable  the Government and development partners  to jointly incentivize development efforts in Ethiopia’s lowlands. Further  consultations will take place  in May to inform and finalise the lowlands. The HLF was  attended by the Minister of Finance; Minister of Peace, State Ministers from Ministry of Agriculture and Water and Irrigation and Deputy Commissioners of Planning and Development Commission.

The forum agreed to consider innovative financing mechanisms of education and health service to address the issue of misallocation of budget; devising appropriate service model for pastoralists in in lowlands; investing on human capital; multi-dimensional poverty index considering vulnerability; focus on quality of education; recognize pastoral development strategy of MoP; multi-year strategy; follow-up discussion with Ministry of education and health; local synergy for service delivery and linking of finance with results would be instrumental in bringing development to lowlands.

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