Graduating Country:

Senegal’s Plan Senegal Emergent outlines a new development model to facilitate transition to a green economy.


Senegal has established itself as one of West Africa’s economic hubs and has made significant strides towards improving the well-being of its population. Nevertheless, with approximately 50 per cent of its territory classified as semi-arid, the country is especially vulnerable to climate change. As a large share of the population relies heavily on natural capital for their livelihood, committing to a green economy is key to developmental success.

Recognizing the importance of sustainability, Senegal adopted the Plan Senegal Emergent (PSE) in 2014, bolstered by a National Strategy for Sustainable Development. In this context, Senegal requested PAGE support in early 2014, with assistance focusing on the operationalisation of the PSE and its five-year Priority Action Plan (PAP 2014-2018). Since 2018, the PSE II and the second PAP to span 2019-2023 have become specific areas of attention.

PAGE work has culminated in several achievements, including: supporting the integration of Inclusive Green Economy (IGE)  into national policies; shaping sectoral and thematic reforms across green jobs, sustainable construction, waste management, green industry and sustainable use of revenues from oil and gas; and fostering ingenuity and entrepreneurship to support green growth. In turn, this has contributed to the achievement of several SDGs, including SDGs 4, 5, 8, 9, 12 and 17.

The Sustainable Development Goals

PAGE milestones


Progress in 2019: A snapshot

Further integrating green economy into policy and priority actions

With PAGE’s support, the Ministry of Environmental and Sustainable Development, with technical input from the Ministry of Economy, Planning and Cooperation, led a modelling exercise to update the national green economy model and related green economy assessment report. The updated assessment was directly linked to the Plan Senegal Emergent II (PSE) as well as to the second Priority Action Plan (PAP 2019-2023) that has been in the process of being implemented since the beginning of 2019. The model provided investment scenarios for six crucial sectors in Senegal’s transition to a green economy (agriculture, fisheries, forestry, energy, water resource management and waste management) providing important insights into the benefits and challenges of related policy reforms.

The updated green economy assessment report was validated with stakeholder at a workshop in August 2019. PAGE’s technical support during this process was integral to ensuring that policy actions are supported by clear quantitative analysis, leading to effective and long-lasting change.

Producing impactful green policies

The National Strategy for the Promotion of Green Jobs (2015-2020) was recognised by the World Future Council as one of the most inspiring and impactful policies aimed at empowering young people to build a fair and sustainable future. The Senegalese Government received the Future Policy Vision Award in October 2019, during the 141st Assembly of the Inter-Parliamentary Union held in Belgrade, Serbia.

Integrating green economy into national training programmes

In May 2019, the Senegalese National School of Administration - Ecole Nationale d’Administration - and UNITAR established a partnership to develop a package of learning modules on green economy to be used in the school’s programme for initial and continuing education of public administration managers. As part of this, a workshop was held to discuss the introduction of the course on IGE into the curricula. Seven modules providing a general introduction to green economy and related policies considering specific challenges and opportunities in Senegal were developed and started to be used in the school’s continuing education programme. As a next step, a shorter version will be developed for integration into the next cycle of the initial formation of future officials.

Sustainably managing funds from oil and gas revenues

PAGE provided an analytical contribution to the policy debate and process of Senegal’s legislation on the management of expected revenues from recently identified oil and gas reserves through its report entitled “Funds and Mechanisms for the Management of Oil and Gas Revenues to Support Sustainable Development”. In July 2019, the report was presented to the High Council on Social Dialogue, bringing together senior-level representatives from all professional sectors and mandated by the President of Senegal to play a central role in the national dialogue around oil and gas. A full session was dedicated to discussing the conclusions of the report as an input for deliberations at its 15th plenary session.

Supporting capacity development on green bonds

An important aspect of sustainability of green economy action is identifying innovative financing mechanisms, such as green bonds, to support work across the environmental sector. Senegal has been reflecting on the possibility of issuing green bonds in certain priority sectors. PAGE, led by UNDP in collaboration with other technical partners (CALIA Conseil and DS Avocats), has supported this initiative by organising a training workshop in November 2019 on how to mobilise financial resources for the green economy by using green bonds.

PAGE impact: 2015-2019 and beyond

Outcome 1: National Policymaking

PAGE has supported the integration of green economy into national policies through multi-stakeholder collaboration and knowledge development. Beyond the executive branch of government, parliamentarians, local mayors and members of different high councils mandated by the President have engaged in PAGE work. Examples include:

Creating a shift to IGE at policy level

PAGE’s five years of action corresponded with the implementation of the Plan Senegal Emergent (PSE), including the first Priority Action Plan (PAP 2014-2018) and the development of the PSE II and second PAP (2019-2023). The initial PSE signalled Senegal’s commitment to sustainable development at a high-level, translated into more practical measures through the PAPs. In the PSE II reference to green economy objectives was further strengthened, and the PSE Vert has become a guide for the government’s green initiatives. In 2016, a National Strategic Orientation Document on Green Economy, together with a supporting action plan was formulated with support from a national technical team. In 2018, PAGE embarked on a partnership with the Ministry of Environmental and Sustainable Development to update the existing national green economy model and related Green Economy Assessment report. Using the updated model, the second edition of the green economy assessment analysed six sectors connected to the second PAP that is being implemented since 2019. This work contributes to SDG 17, targets 17.14, 17.15 and 17.19 by enhancing policy coherence and supporting country-owned frameworks and tools.

Positioning IGE on the political agenda

PAGE, in collaboration with the Ministry of Environmental and Sustainable Development and Institute of Environmental Sciences organised two National Green Economy Days in 2015 and 2018, providing stakeholders with the opportunity to discuss Senegal’s transition to a green economy. A third edition took place on 11-12 February 2020. The second event held in February 2018 featured the launch of the study “Funds and Mechanisms for the Management of Oil and Gas Revenues to Support Sustainable Development” and discussed the first findings from the study on “Skills for Green Jobs” in Senegal. The Green Economy Days will be taken forward beyond PAGE, demonstrating the level of national ownership of IGE. This supports SDG 17, targets 17.14 and 17.16 by enhancing policy coherence and building partnerships.

Creating a national platform for sustainable economic growth

One of the highlights of the second Green Economy Days was the announcement of the National Multi-stakeholder Platform on the Green Economy that aims to stimulate green growth and development. PAGE supported the establishment of this platform, holding consultations to develop a charter on green economy and to create a mission and objectives. The Platform brings together a dozen institutions and provides a forum for dialogue, information sharing and coordinated action on issues such as green financing, climate change, green jobs, and the sustainable exploitation of the country’s oil and gas resources. Going forward, the platform will act as an institutional driver to ensure sustainability when PAGE phases out of Senegal. This work contributes to SDG 17, target 17.16, by facilitating multi-stakeholder partnerships.

Outcome 2: Sectoral and Thematic Reform

PAGE identified four priority areas aligned with the Plan Senegal Emergent (PSE) and backed by the findings of the original Green Economy Assessment from 2013. These are outlined below, with the additional information related to entrepreneurship included under Outcome 3:

Green jobs

With a young active population, Senegal’s labour market is characterised by a constant stream of new workers, providing opportunities for green job creation. PAGE has provided the following support aligned to SDGs 8 and 17, particularly targets 8.5 and 17.14, on productive employment and decent work, and on enhancing policy coherence. This has also contributed to SDG 5, target 5.C, by promoting gender equality:

  • Formulation of the National Strategy on Green Jobs identifying avenues for green job creation and priorities for policy support and being integrated into the National Employment Policy;
  • Implementation of the above Policy through the PACEV (le Programme d'appui à la création d’opportunités d’Emplois Verts) —a programme that aims to build knowledge and skills in the field of environment and business management, address low qualification levels and help stakeholders formulate promising and bankable projects;
  • Support to a Public-Private Partnership for the establishment of an incubator for the green economy and green jobs, involving private companies, higher technical education institutions and government agencies;
  • Development of methodology for data collection and statistical analysis of green jobs creation that was integrated into the National Employment Survey; and
  • A Study on Skills for Green Jobs that helped to identify the skills needed in emerging occupations and rapidly growing industries in the context of greening the economy.
Sustainable construction

In 2015, PAGE engaged in a partnership with the National Programme on Energy Efficiency and Use of Local Material for Sustainable Construction to support training and the development of technical norms and standards on sustainable construction materials and energy efficiency. Through support to the renovation of the polytechnic school in the town of Thies, a building showcasing energy efficiency standards was created. This was complemented by training sessions in 2015 and 2016 on the use of local material for construction, involving artisans and women’s groups. This contributes to SDG 12, target 12.5, by using recycled building materials and promoting low-carbon production, as well as SDG 5, target 5.C, by supporting gender equality.

Waste management

In 2015, PAGE established a partnership with the National Programme on Waste Management to support capacity building activities for local institutions, SMEs and community groups with a focus on entrepreneurship and management skills as well as occupational health and safety. In May 2017, PAGE participated in a national forum on waste management in Dakar as part of its work to build the institutional capacity of cooperatives set-up to support waste collection and central sorting. ILO and WEIGO (a charitable foundation) have taken this work forward by developing a pilot project to establish cooperatives amongst waste pickers in Mbeubeuss – the largest open-air landfill in West Africa. In August 2019, they co-organised a workshop involving national institutions in waste management. This drew on the findings of a scoping study on the waste site and presented the option of a cooperative, stimulating national media attending and integrating workers into the discussion. This support SDG 12, target 12.4, on reducing waste generation and SDG 8, target 8.5, on decent work for all.

Green industry

A green industry assessment was completed in 2015 to support the PSE objectives on industrialisation. This was followed by a High-Level Roundtable on Green Industry in May 2017, as part of the Institute for Economic Development and Planning’s policy dialogue series. With PAGE support, the Ministry of Industry formulated several recommendations for an Action Plan for a Green Industrialisation in Africa and for Senegal, in particular. This contributes to SDG 9, target 9.2, by promoting sustainable industrialisation and SDG 12, target 12.1, by incorporating sustainable production and consumption.

Sustainable funds from oil and gas

PAGE has concentrated efforts on influencing policy debates on the use of expected revenues to promote sustainable development. Analytical work resulted in study entitled “Funds and Mechanisms for the Management of Oil and Gas Revenues to Support Sustainable Development: Insights from Country Experiences and Lessons for Senegal”. Since its launch in 2018, the study has become a reference document, informing national dialogues and discussions, such as the third National Sustainable Development Conference held in May 2018 and a session by the High Council on Social Dialogue in July 2019, mandated by the President of Senegal to play a central role in the national dialogue around oil and gas. PAGE’s support for the sustainable management of oil and gas revenue contributes to SDG 8, target 8.4, by endeavouring to decouple economic growth from environmental degradation.

Outcome 3: Strengthening Capacity

In particular, Senegal is a successful example of an institutional approach to training green entrepreneurs through a training-of-trainers programme, run with local partners with a proven multiplier effect. PAGE’s efforts to strengthen capacity are outlined below:

Building institutional capacity

Several capacity building activities have been undertaken to build institutional capacity as follows:

  • Assessing learning needs: In October 2018, PAGE completed a Green Economy Learning Needs Assessment, focusing on the public sector. The assessment supports the achievement of SDG 4, target 4.7, by identifying priority learning needs;
  • Developing local IGE training programmes: In the framework of PAGE, UNITAR and Ecole Nationale d’Administration established a cooperation to integrate training modules on IGE into the different elements of the school’s course programme – with seven modules already being used in its continuing formation. Through this training, policymakers and civil servants will be given a strong foundation in green economy that they can apply to their areas of work in judiciary, fiscal policy, customs and public management. This supports SDG 17, target 17.9, by enhancing international support for implementing effective capacity building;
  • Cultivating green entrepreneurship: PAGE supported the development of green entrepreneurship training and its application as a new addition to the GERME (Gérez mieux votre entreprise) programme - an established ILO Training Tool on Business Creation and Management. In November 2017, PAGE organised a train-the-trainer with 21 trainers from Senegal and five from Burkina Faso. In December 2018, 19 of these trainers went on to practice their coaching skills with 37 entrepreneurs to help them integrate environmental dimension into their businesses. This supports SDG 8, target 8.5, by promoting decent work and SDG 17, target 17.9, by enhancing international support for implementing effective capacity building.
Building individual capacity

Efforts have also been made to build individual knowledge on a range of IGE-related topics, supporting SDG 4, target 4.7. Examples include:

  • Sustainable construction: A training session was held for local communities on the use of local materials for construction in 2015, as part of PAGE’s support to the National Programme on Energy Efficiency and Use of Local Material for Sustainable Construction;
  • Policy, research and analysis on IGE: In May 2016, 70 representatives from policy, research and analysis participated in the first edition of the Green Economy Academy in Dakar, Senegal;
  • Waste management: PAGE supported the training of five officials from the National Programme on Waste Management to attend waste management training in Turin in November 2017; and
  • Green economy modelling: In September 2018, the Ministry of Economy, Planning and Cooperation led a two-day cross-sectoral training on the integrated Threshold 21 SDG model. As a result of this training, modelers have been able to support updates to the green economy assessment conducted in 2019 for the second phase of the Priority Action Plan (PAP).
South-south collaboration

Senegal has organised and participated in several collaborative events, including hosting a National Green Academy in 2016 and green entrepreneurship in November 2017 involving trainers from Burkina Faso and Senegal. Finally, the Youth Entrepreneurship and Self-Employment Forum was held in Dakar in November 2018 under the Global Initiative on Decent Jobs for Youth, involving Senegal, Ghana and others. These examples contribute to SDG 17, target 17.9, by facilitating cooperation to support national implementation of the SDGs.