Seven West African countries rank among the top 20 countries in the world with the highest rate of child marriage [Niger (1), Chad (3), Mali (5), Guinea (6), Burkina Faso (8), Sierra Leone (13) and Nigeria (14)]. In Niger, three out of four girls marry before their 18th birthday, contributing to the highest fertility rate in the world of more than six children per woman. Nigeria and Niger are among the top 20 countries with the highest absolute number of child marriages, with 1.193 million and 244 000 married girls, respectively.
- 31 Jan 2016Body:Chad and Sierra Leone are among the eight countries with food insecurity levels categorised as "alarming" in the 2015 Global Hunger Index (GHI) from the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI). The scores of Niger (34.5) and Nigeria (32.8) are both very close to the “alarming level” of food insecurity which is particularly worrying for Africa’s most populous country. Most other West African countries registered scores showing food insecurity in the "serious" range.
- Topics:Members:Body:The Swiss Development Co-operation places a strong focus on regional integration dynamics and challenges. Working together with professional organisations and think-tanks, the West Africa Division covers five priority countries (Benin, Burkina Faso, Mali, Niger and Chad) and three thematic areas (basic education, vocational education and training; rural development and food security; and local governance and decentralisation). Switzerland is a founding member of the Sahel and West Africa Club.
- 01 Oct 2014Body:At an estimated cost of 21 billion USD in 2006, the trans-Saharan gas pipeline would have the capacity to transport some 30 billion cubic meters of gas per year from Nigeria to Europe. Within the European Union, gas consumption is overall shrinking but gas production is declining even faster (30% of the gas needs are supplied by Russia, compared to 14% provided by Algeria).
- 01 Oct 2014Body:Despite their common heritage, the Maghreb and the Sahel remain insufficiently connected. The dissemination of cultural, religious and linguistic trends, the movement of people, and their trade relations serve as ancient bridges between the two regions.
- 01 Jan 2014Country:Body:The regional security environment is also a concern for Chad, which has a significant security apparatus but is now suffering a sharp drop in its financial resources due to the fall in oil prices. Chad remains one of the poorest countries in the world where chronic food insecurity is a widespread issue for much of the population.