August 31, 2020

Paying tribute to Mali's Mohamed Sidibé

In honor of former Enhanced Integrated Framework National Coordinator in Mali

Mohamed Sidibé was a strong supporter of the Enhanced Integrated Framework (EIF) National Implementation Unit in Mali, having helped to establish and manage its operations. As a member of the EIF team from 2005 to 2018, he had a considerable impact on development in Mali. He passed away on Friday 8 May 2020 in Bamako and EIF would like to pay tribute to this man who was instrumental in making its operations a success.

Sidibé's death is a great loss for Mali. He dedicated his life to the promotion and development of sectors with high export potential such as mangoes, shea, gum arabic and sesame. No doubt his greatest contribution to Mali's economic development is having secured a prominent position for trade in the country's National Development Plan and in sector‑wide strategies and to have facilitated Mali's beneficial entry in the global trading system.

Sidibé started his career at the Directorate‑General of Trade, Consumer Affairs and Competition (DGCC) under the Ministry of Industry and Commerce, where he worked in the division in charge of promoting trade and economic development. That post gave him a unique opportunity to support and guide Malian exporters towards regional and international trade events. By the same token, he became fully convinced of the advantages Mali could obtain from these opportunities aimed at adding value to and exporting agricultural products.

 

 

That was how, based on his vast experience, he helped implement the Integrated Framework in 2005, and then helped manage the Enhanced Integrated Framework in his capacity as National Coordinator until 2018. During his term of office, he helped expand several sectors, including the mango sector. Thanks to the support of EIF under the auspices of Mohamed Sidibé and to other projects in this sector, the production of mangoes has increased tenfold in Mali. In fact, over a period of 10 years, treatment of mango orchards has resulted in an increase in production from 30,000 tonnes to 100,000 tonnes per year.

Moreover, the establishment of quality control systems has allowed companies to obtain ISO and HACCP certification, thus enabling them to export their mangoes. Under Sidibé's dynamic leadership, these measures have translated notably into an exponential increase in export volumes, from 6,000 tonnes in 2009 to 30,000 tonnes in 2019, which has generated tens of thousands of CFA francs in turnover per year for stakeholders in the sector.

Thanks to Sidibé's courage and perseverance, the trade component has been incorporated and consolidated in the National Development Plan and has enabled the mobilisation of significant resources from the state budget. This has allowed EIF projects to benefit from considerable allocations from the national budget. Sidibé managed successfully, in his capacity as EIF Coordinator, to increase the funds allocated to certain projects, notably one aimed at expanding the gum arabic sector. The Government of Mali made a contribution to this project to the tune of US$2 million per year thanks to his important work. His resource mobilisation activities have been cited by several EIF countries.

"Mr. Sidibé was very committed to trade and to Mali's participation, and generally that of the least developed countries, in the global trading system," said Dansine Coulibaly, current National Coordinator in Mali. "Through his close involvement, he was always seeking out opportunities in the field to advance Mali's position in regional and international markets."

Sidibé made an extraordinary contribution to trade in Mali. The EIF Secretariat is eternally grateful to him and is hopeful that his dynamic leadership will be an inspiration to trade actors in Mali for many years to come.

"Mr. Sidibé was a man who held his country's economic development very close to his heart and who spared no effort in promoting Mali's socioeconomic development and ending poverty, especially among the most vulnerable populations: rural communities and women," said Mbaye Ndiaye, EIF Executive Secretariat Coordinator for Mali.

 

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Header image ©EIF, in text images ©EIF NIU Mali.

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Any views and opinions expressed on Trade for Development News are those of the author(s), and do not necessarily reflect those of EIF.