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Briefing about the FAO events in 2004 and civil society working

European IPC Focal Point (CSA) December 2004

13 December 2004
Keywords:

More in detail, the briefing presents:
-  the results of the Regional Conferences and Consultations in the different continents and particularly in Europe ;
-  the work during and the results of the Committee on World Food Security (CFS) of December 2004 in Rome (preparation of the civil society work for the CFS by the IPC, inputs at the CFS, side event on the International Alliance Against Hunger (IAAH);
-  the general IPC working and achieved work in various fields (General IPC meeting in 2004, Common IPC-FAO work on Food Sovereignty, reactions to the 2004 SOFA report and preparation of the 2005 one, meeting of the Agricultural research working group, regional meeting for the European Region);
-  adoption of the guidelines for the Right to food;
-  entering into force of the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture;
-  meeting for the « More and better » campaign in September 2004.

I. Regional Conferences and Consultations
II. Committee on World Food Security (CFS) Rome 19-23/09/2004
III. IPC working and achieved work in various fields
IV. Right to food: adoption of the guidelines
V. International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture
VI. Meeting for the « More and better » campaign on 17-18 Septembre 2004
Next briefing : Briefing about the European Region activities and perspectives
Attached Documents

I. Regional Conferences and Consultations


Like every two years, FAO had this year regional processes worldwide. In each region, the FAO member governments organized regional Conferences on regional issues.
For the third time (after 2000 and 2002), FAO-NGO/CSO/Social movements Consultations were also held in each continent before the Conferences.
This gave opportunities for the civil society organizations to discuss regional priorities for the food security and agriculture issues in relation with the FAO, but also to present to the governments their recommendations and to discuss them together.
Of course, the quality of the dialogue between civil society and governments is unequal from region to region, but remains crucial in the struggle against hunger. Indeed, we should not forget that the involvement of civil society in the definition and execution of policies and actions is one of the recommendations in the plan of action of the 1996 World Food Summit.
Excepted for the European region, a funding for Consultations (80.000 €) was provided threw the FAO by the Italian government.

I.1 Europe

The 24th Regional Conference for Europe took place on the 5-7 May, in Montpellier, France. Just before, the Regional FAO/NGO-CSO Consultation for Europe took place on 3-4 May 2004, Montpellier, France.
The title of the Consultation was: Food quality/safety/diversity, agriculture research and state responsibilities to combat hunger and malnutrition. Main challenges to ensure family based sustainable agriculture and food systems, rural development and the right to food in the European Region and in the world.

I.1.1 European IPC meeting in 2003 and preparatory meeting in 2004

In 2003, a general European IPC meeting took place in Brussels on the 16.6.2003 and discussed mostly the follow-up of the Forum and the organization of the European IPC work, and the general follow-up of civil society activities related to the FAO.
The report of the meeting is available on the IPC website, in the part related to the European Region:
http://www.csa-be.org/IMG/doc/Eur_I...

In 2004, two meetings took place, directly linked to the preparation of the European FAO-CSO/NGO/Social movements Consultation in Montpellier.
The first preparatory meeting was held in Brussels (CSA’s Office) on the 8th of March 2004 by an enlarged European IPC.
The report of the Brussels meeting is available on the IPC website:
http://www.csa-be.org/IMG/doc/Eur_I...

A second enlarged European IPC in preparation of the Montpellier Consultation was held in Paris (Coordination Sud) on the 30th of March 2004. The report is available on the following address:
http://www.csa-be.org/IMG/doc/Eur_I...

The working method used to prepare the European Consultation is detailed on the European IPC website in the briefing called: FAO - Civil Society Consultation and FAO Regional Conference for the European Region, Montpellier (France), the 3th - 4th and 5th - 7th May 2004, on paragraph 2.3:
http://www.csa-be.org/article.php3?...

I.1.2 The European Consultation of 3-4 May 2004

a. Participation and funding of the Consultation
About one hundred persons participated into the Consultation.
The list is available on the website:
http://www.csa-be.org/article.php3?...

Ten representatives from EECCs (European East and Central Countries) organizations participated in the Consultation, thanks to the intervention of the French government hosting the Conference and the Consultation. They were chosen during the last preparatory meeting held in Paris at the end of March, taking into account the balance between subregions and sectors.

b. Report, statements and preparatory documents of the Consultation
The 3 statements that were made at the issue of the Consultation and presented at the Conference.
The report of the Consultation is available on the European IPC website at the following adress:
http://www.csa-be.org/IMG/doc/Repor...

The statements and the preparatory documents of the Consultation are available on the European IPC website, on paragraph 5:
http://www.csa-be.org/article.php3?...

c. Other events related to the Consultation
- Before the Consultation, a field visit was organized by the French young Framers association, in the neighbourhood of Montpellier, to a wine cooperative. The actual trend in the Cooperative is to produce less quantity, but to improve the quality and to sell it at better prices thanks the recognition of the improved processing work by geographical indications (such as "le Gris de Montpellier").

- During the Consultation, a meeting took place with Jacques Diouf, who received a delegation of participants and organizers of the Consultation. The delegation was conducted by the chair of the Consultation, Yves Berthelot, and includes Aksel Naerstadt, Patrick Mulvany, Geza Varga, François Vanier and Daniel Van Der Steen. The meeting enabled to discuss some very important issues:
- the importance of civil society involvement in the food and agriculture issues, especially in the definition of rules for food quality;
- the importance, in this process, of the involvement of small farmers organizations;
- the weight of agrobusiness;
- the problems, which are also funding problems, for the civil society in the European Region to
work with the organizations in accession countries and non EU countries;
- the importance of bio diversity and the role the FAO is able and should play in watching the problems related to the destruction of sustainable family farm systems;
- the follow-up of the International Treaty on phytogenetic resources for food and agriculture;
- the needed alliance between FAO and civil society organizations, also strongly needed in Europe;
- the funds available for the appropriate agriculture research and for support of agriculture in general;
- the specific problems of agriculture and food issues in the EECCs, where the first priority is to enhance the knowledge and consciousness of citizens and farmers;
- the importance of supply management for agriculture everywhere in the world and the role the FAO is able and should play in promoting better management of commodities important for food.

I.1.3 The European Conference

The report on the Conference is available on the website of the FAO Regional office for Europe:
ftp://ftp.fao.org/docrep/fao/meetin...
The documents for particular interest to the NGOs/CSOs are on the European IPC website on the following adress:
http://www.csa-be.org/article.php3?...
All the FAO documents are on the FAO website on the following address:
http://www.fao.org/Unfao/Bodies/Reg...

I.2 Africa

The Regional FAO-ONG/OSC Consultation for Africa was held on the 27-29th of February 2004 in Johannesburg, South Africa.
The statement of the Consultation is available on the IPC website:
http://www.foodsovereignty.org/publ...

The Regional Conference for Africa (ARC) was held on the 1-5th of March 2004.

The Consultation for Africa was prepared by a meeting of the African sub-regional focal points of the international NGO/CSO Planning Committee - IPC in Accra, 12-14 March 2003, organized by the Farmers organizations network focal points (Ndiogou Fall, Mercy Karanja and Elisabeth Atangana).

I.3 South East Asia

The FAO-NGO/CSO Regional Consultation, called "From Agenda to Action -
Follow-up to the NGO/CSO Forum on Food Sovereignty", was held on the 15-16th of May 2004 in Bejing, China.
The final statement is available on the IPC website:
http://www.foodsovereignty.org/publ...

The 27th Regional Conference for Asia and Pacific (APRC) followed the Consultation on the 17th -21th of May.

In preparation of the Consultation, a joint FAO-IPC Asia planning meeting took place in Bangkok, from the 21th to the 23th of July 2003.
The report of the meeting is on the IPC website:
http://www.foodsovereignty.org/publ...

I.4 Latin America (and indigenous people)

The FAO - Civil society Regional Consultation for Latin America and the Caribbean was held in Guatemala City, Guatemala, on the 23-25th of April 2004.
The statement of the Consultation is available on the IPC website:
http://www.foodsovereignty.org/publ...

Another product of the Consultation was a specific Statement of the Indigenous Peoples.
The statement is available, in Spanish, ob the IPC website:
http://www.foodsovereignty.org/publ...

The 28th Regional Conference for Latin America and the Caribbean (LARC) followed on the 26th -30th of April.

A preparatory meeting to the Consultation was held in 2003.
The report in on the IPC website:
http://www.foodsovereignty.org/publ...

I.5 West and Central Asia and North Africa (Near East)

The FAO-NGO/CSO Regional Civil Society Consultation for food sovereignty in the West and Central Asian and North African Region (Near East) was held in Doha, Qatar, on the 11th -13th of March 2004.
The statement is available on the IPC website:
http://www.foodsovereignty.org/publ...

The 27th Regional Conference for the Near East (NERC) followed, on the 13-17th of March.

A preparatory meeting for the Consultation happened between the FAO Regional Office for the Near East (RNE) and the IPC regional focal points in Cairo, on the 28th -30th of July 2003.
The report of the meeting is available on the IPC website:
http://www.foodsovereignty.org/publ...

I.5 Bringing the results of the Consultations at the CFS in Rome

During the September 2004 CFS meeting, a statement was prepared by the present organizations to be read during the meeting of the governmental Committee (see next point II on CFS).
The statement is available on the IPC website:
http://www.foodsovereignty.org/foru...

II. Committee on World Food Security (CFS) Rome 19-23/09/2004

II.1 Preparation of the CFS by Civil society and IPC

A preparatory meeting was held on Sunday the 19th September 2004. Other IPC meetings, open to all the civil society representatives, followed from Monday 20th until Thursday 23th.

A civil society meeting organized buy the IPC liaison office, held before the beginning of the CFS permitted the IPC members present in Rome for the CFS (at least one representative by region was present thanks to the help of the IPC liaison office n Rome) to prepare the work to be done by the civil society organizations during the week.
For each item of the CFS agenda, the meeting proposed to organize a working group and appointed for each WG a convener.

So, working groups were established on the following issues corresponding to the items of the agenda :
- assessment of the world food security situation
- follow-up to the WFS: report on progress in the implementation of the Plan of Action
- follow-up to the World Food Summit: future reporting format for the WFS follow-up
- follow-up to the World Food Summit: arrangements for a "Special Forum"
- preparation of a general statement summarizing the results of all the Regional Consultations that were held in 2004 in the 5 Regions, to be presented during the CFS.

The 3 geographical focal points for Latin America, Near East and Europe, that were present in Rome (Mario Ahumeda, Maryam Rahmanain and Daniel Van Der Steen) participated in the summary and took also into account the results of the Consultations in Asia and in Africa, whose focal points could not join us for visa problems.

Other issues that were discussed during the civil society organizations meetings were:
- the International Alliance against hunger ;
- the work towards the Inter Governmental Working Group in charge of the production of the voluntary guidelines to achieve the right to adequate food;
- discussion of and agreement on the main points to be suggested at the CFS Secretariat and chair (meeting with Ms. Margarita Flores and the previous chair of the CFS);
- meeting with the CFS chair and secretariat;
- meeting avec Mrs. Eva Clayton (International Alliance against hunger);
- presentation of Mr Daniel de la Torre to the IPC in order to prepare a collaboration between IPC and the network of research people working on the supply management issues.

II.2 Civil society inputs at the CFS

II.2.1 Statements
Statements were presented by the civil society organizations on the main points of the CFS agenda, under the coordination of IPC:

a. Assesment of world food security situation : 2 interventions were planned by IPC:
- Indra Lubis - Indonésie - Via Campesina (see document at the end)
- John Mutunga - Kenya - FIPA.
David King (IPC member) made also a separate intervention on behalf of IFAP

b. Follow-up to the World Food Summit - Report on the progress of implementation of the plan of action :
Maryam Rahmanian (Iran - IPC) presented the general statement summarizing the results of all the Regional Consultations held in 2004 in the 5 Regions (see document at the end)

c. Report to the IGWG for the Elaboration of a Set of Voluntary Guidelines to Support the Right to Adequate Food :
Michael Windfuhr, FIAN

d. Future Reporting Format for the World Food Summit follow-up :
Daniel Van Der Steen, IPC (Collectif Stratégies Alimentaires, Belgium) (see document at the end)

e. Arrangements for a "Special Forum" for the World Food Summit follow-up on the bas of the Brazilian proposal :
Mario Ahumada, IPC (MAELA, Chili)

f. International Alliance Against Hunger
Aksel Naerstad, IPC (Development Fund of Norway)

II.2.2 Some comments on the work done at the CFS
Some positive steps could be achieved by the CSOs/NGOs present at the CFS 2004, but have still problems to solve for further progress.

Positive aspects

a. The meeting with the CFS secretariat and Presidency before the beginning of the meeting was very useful. One of the problems we face at each time is that what we gained one year is many times "forgotten" the next year. Such a meeting permits us to recall which agreements were obtained in the past. For that reason, the presence of the secretariat is of great importance.

b. The Brazilian proposal of a special Forum to assess the progress of the Plan of Action of the WFS at the le mid term review in 2006 (ten years later) is of great interest. It is why we had an intervention on the issue. The Brazilian proposal asked for the next CFS to prepare the work and the details for the Special Forum, but it was already stated that the Forum should be a special one, in the sense that governments and Civil society representatives should be balanced and with an equal right to intervene in the discussions. The model was the Inter Governmental Working Group on the right to adequate food. But it was not accepted as such, regarding the various reactions of a large range of countries from the South but also from the North. The Dutch presidency was very negative on some aspects of the proposal (see after on the negative aspects). The nothing is lost and the decision will be taken next year.

c. The preparatory meeting on Sunday is really a condition of effectiveness in the civil society work at the CFS. It was very useful to discuss before the strategic issues, to prepare our positions and to organize ourselves for the preparation of the statements on the important issues that could be identified and discussed in advance.
For example, it is not sure that many organizations were aware of the importance of a point as the Future Reporting Format for the World Food Summit follow-up. The meeting on the Sunday showed the importance of the point and the organizations present at the CFS could prepare a statement on the issue.

Remaining problems

In the CFS discussion about the preparation of the WFS: ten years later and the 2005 CFS as a step for it, many of us were surprised in regard to the position expressed by the UE presidency from the Netherlands about the proposal made by the Brazilian government.
They had a very negative position towards the Brazilian proposal for enhance the opportunities to have a good and balanced dialogue between Governments and non governmental organizations representatives.
The IPC chair and Daniel Van Der Steen could see for some minutes the Minister of the Netherlands to express our disappointment about the positions he presented in the name of the EU Presidency.
It is not the first time but the EU was seldom playing a positive role to promote a better involvement of civil society and NGOs in the governmental process.
Often in the past already, we had the impression the EU was not really supporting non governmental involvement.
We know that meetings with the EU official are always difficult in relation with the need of consultation between the 15 and now 25 Member States.
But the negative attitude cannot be explained only by these problems.
What is also clear is that few information is transmitted between Member States about what was achieved and agreed in the past. So the reaction of the actual presidency was negative towards some initiatives that were already accepted in the past and also implemented (such as the multi stakeholders dialogue we had during the WFS: five years later). So the IPC has also the role, in relation with the FAO, to keep the memory and transmit the information about what was agreed and achieved in the past between civil society, governments and the FAO.

II. 3 Side event on the International Alliance Against Hunger (IAAH)

The International Alliance Against Hunger (IAAH) organized, during the CFS week, a side event on the 22th of September afternoon. This was an opportunity to exchange between Civil Society Organizations present at the CFS and the leaders of National Alliances Against Hunger on the role that the Alliances could play. For remembering, the IAAH was launched about one year before, as the main issue of the World Food Day. The alliances are open to both Governments and Civil Society Organizations. In July 2004, 84 Governments or Civil Society Organizations said having set up a National Alliance or expressed their will to do so. Even if some links may exist, this initiative is different from the "More and better" Campaign.

III. IPC working and achieved work in various fields

III.1 General IPC meeting in 2004

The IPC general meeting was hosted in 2004 by IFAD from the 16th to the 18th of October. The two first days were devoted to the internal IPC business, concerning:
- the relations with the FAO (particularly after the edition of the 2004 SOFA report) and other Inter Governmental Organizations (IFAD, WFP…) and how to develop our force inside the FAO;
- the funding;
- the functioning of IPC (autonomy, mandate…) at global and regional levels;
- the relations with different bodies of the FAO and the governments;
- the regional working (including regional meetings);
- the IPC working groups;
- the Action plan for 2005, including the preparation of the WTO discussions, the Technical Committees, the Conference.

The third day was devoted to meetings with IFAP: general meeting in the morning about global market access and access to land; meeting between the heads of IFAD and representatives of important social movements in the afternoon.

The fourth day was devoted to meetings with the FAO: general debriefing, on trade and on food sovereignty (see here after).

III.2 Common IPC-FAO work on Food Sovereignty

As some people will probably know, work on trade and what the IPC calls food sovereignty was done during the March 2003 Committee on Commodity Problems (CCP).

During the 2003 CCP week, the IPC organized a side event on Friday March 21st on the food sovereignty. Several of us participated in the preparation and during the event : Paul Nicholson (Via Campesina), Paul Mutunga (KNFU), Antonio Onorati (international focal point of the IPC), Luca Colombo (Greenpeace and member of the representation of the IPC in Rome), Béatrice Gasco (IPC Liaison Office) and Daniel Van Der Steen .
Luca Colombo was co-chairing the side event with Mr Hertwig de Haen (assistant to the Director General of the FAO Economic and Social Department) and presentations were made by Paul Nicholson, Paul Mutunga and Daniel Van Der Steen.

Before the event there was a discussion among the IPC representatives and the FAO officials responsible for the issues of commodity problems and market, especially with MM. Ali Gurkan, Ramesh Sharma and Mr Sumiter. FAO staff people estimate that food sovereignty should be better taken into account if at WTO such elements as food safety, environment, rural developme¶ 0— FGœ¾jAœ¾jA0—¡-¤DÔÚõ¶ 0´-mÏ`GmÏ`GmÏ`G0----¤—¤µÜ¶õ¤ -’i¾— FG-ÃjA-ÃjA-’-è-¤-¤¥-¤¦-¤§-¤¨-¤©-¤ª-¤«-¤¬-¤­-¤®-¤¯-¤°-¤gÔÚõ¶ 0±-! FG1ÌJF1ÌJF0—:-¤Gê”Û¶ 0—*»`GüÐ`GüÐ`G0—›-¤ä-:˶õ¶ 06)×k`G*»`G-’`G0—p-¤àá-ïñ-^o¶õÀAn-Zó_GîJKFîJKFn—n-¤—•ÛÀAn-Zó_Gëÿ Gëÿ Gn—o-¤—•ÛÀAn-Zó_GîJKFîJKFn—p-¤—•ÛÀAn-Zó_GîJKFîJKFn—q-¤—•Û€ n´b÷FîJKFîJKFn---•Û¤ n-Z-YGîJKFîJKFn—r-¤—•Û¤ n|-eY-GîJKFîJKFn—s-¤—•Û¶ 0¼IG¼IG¼IG0-b—ÛÀAn-Wó_GGµ-GºlQFn—w-¤-ê—Û¤ nbeY-GîJKFîJKFn—u-¤—•Û¤ -’S- FG履D履D-’—T-¤£ÛöÚ¶ 0— FG.(ËE.(ËE0—fÌoÌ8ÝöÚ¶ 0I!/¢FGõ-PGõ-PG0—æ-¤‚--- -»œ‘õ¶ 0ÒÁÖF *ËE *ËE0-ñÝöÚ¶ 0ØÀ`GØÀ`GØÀ`G0-òÝöÚ¶ 0f¹^Gf¹^Gf¹^G0—ÞöÚ¶ 0¬(- FGh¡FGùºŸD0—/-¤2-¤3-¤-ÞöÚ¶ 0ù»`Gù»`Gù»`G0-­ÞöÚ¶ 0ÕÁÖFe!ËEe!ËE0-ÓÞöÚ¶ 0üÐ`GüÐ`GüÐ`G0-àßöÚ¶ 0ÆË`GÆË`GÆË`G0-áßöÚ¶ 0ÖÁÖF *ËE *ËE0-ãßöÚ¶ 0å(- FGh¡FGJ»ŸD0—c-¤h-¤k-¤ÚâöÚ¶ 0×ÁÖF­-ËE­-ËE0-ÛâöÚÀAn-Zó_Gëÿ GîJKFn—v-¤—•Û¶ 0m*- FGh¡FGh¡FG0—m-¤-@C—ÞãöÚ State of Food and Agriculture 2003-04, issued in May 2004, explores the potential of agricultural biotechnology - especially transgenic crops - to meet the needs of the poor.
The report presents an analysis of the socio-economic impacts of technological change in agriculture and surveys the current evidence regarding the safety of transgenic crops for human health and the environment. It recommends targeted investments in agricultural research, extension and regulatory capacity to ensure that the potential of agricultural biotechnology is brought to bear on the needs of the poor.
The report is available on the following address:
http://www.fao.org/documents/show_c...

The reaction of the NGOs and of many other Civil Society Organizations against a report that clearly considered biotechnologies as a response to end hunger was very strong.
The IPC organized the sending of an open letter to Mr. Jacques Diouf, Director General of FAO and asked the interested NGOs, CSOs and individuals to sign the open letter. In a few weeks, the open letter, under the title "FAO Declares War on Farmers not on Hunger", gathered 1300 signatures, from which 650 were from Civil Society Organizations of 80 countries. It seems that the open letter had a strong impact also inside of the FAO, where a part of the staff agreed also with the views expressed in the open letter.
See the open letter on the IPC website at the following address:
http://www.foodsovereignty.org/foru...

During its October 2004 meeting, the IPC discussed the future of its relations with the FAO.A small delegation could meet Mr. Jacques Diouf, Director General of FAO. The issue of the meeting was that the FAO was open for the Civil Society Organizations, threw the IPC, to address their own points of view about the issue that was discussed in the SOFA report. And to avoid in the future new problems, another proposal was to include at the beginning IPC representatives in the process to write the report.
This was agreed by the IPC members present inRome and to concretize the verbal agreement, the IPC drafted and did send a letter to the Director General in order to propose the modalities for the IPC-FAO collaboration for the 2 contributions.
The response of the Director General was a bit disappointing and too general for the IPC members. FAO offers to provide support for the production of a brief document prepared independently by civil society on "Agricultural biotechnology: Meeting the needs of the poor?" For the 2005 SOFA Report on trade and agriculture, the proposal is that the IPC (between other organizations, some of them having very divergent views on agriculture trade) should prepare a succinct position statement on the topic, for inclusion in the final report.
Some of the IPC members were not convinced that we should accept such a weak collaboration, in comparison with what they expected after the October meeting. No decision is taken until now, but 2 meetings were scheduled on the 13th and the 20th of December 2004 between IPC and respectively with FAO staff members in charge of the 2005 SOFA report and with the Director General. The meeting of the 13 December is about the collaboration on the 2005 SOFA report and the one of 20 December is to discuss future IPC-FAO collaboration in more detail. They will perhaps provide more details on the common working for these 2 reports and this remains a chance to reach an agreement.

III.4 Meeting of the Agricultural research working group

The first meeting of the working group was held on the 15th of October 2004, on the day preceding the general IPC meeting.
It was during the November 2003 general IPC meeting that it was decided to form a working group on agricultural research and that its objectives were defined:
- provide a forum for discussion on the development of a new farmer-led agricultural research as well as networks or coalitions working around this issue, with the aim of producing proposals how this could be developed, resourced and implemented;
- develop critical analysis and proposals about the work and orientation of existing agencies dealing with agricultural research (such as the CGIAR and the FAO) for consideration by the wider network of civil society organizations and social movements with a view that they can use it in their advocacy activities.
Three important Networks specialized in these issues are involved in the working group: Pat Mooney (ETC), Patrick Mulvany (ITDG) and Henk Hobbelink (GRAIN).

III.5 Regional meeting for the European Region

The European members of the IPC had a meeting in the framework of the general IPC meeting.
The report of the European meeting and other issues important for the European organizations will be part of the next briefing related to Europe and the organization of the European involvement in FAO business during next year.
For information, the important meetings in relation with the FAO in 2005 will be the following:
- Committee on Fisheries (COFI): 7-11 March 2005
- Committee on Forests (COFO): 15-19 March 2005
- Committee on Commodity Problems (CCP): 11-13 April 2005
- Committee on Agriculture (COAG): 14-16 April 2005
There will also be a meeting in Europe in one of the 10 new Members of the European Union (still to be decided by the European IPC) and the World Conference during the last months of the year.

IV. Right to food: adoption of the guidelines

During the CFS week (from Monday 20th until Thursday 23th September 2004), a group of Member States representatives involved in the Intergovernmental Working Group for the Elaboration of a Set of on the "Voluntary Guidelines to Support the Progressive Realization of the Right to Adequate Food in the Context of National Food Security" (IGWG) were continuing their discussions.
Great news, the discussions that were held during the CFS, in a group called « the friends of the chair » (the Chair was Mr Nourri from Iran), reached on Wednesday an agreement on the last points on which oppositions remained (such as the international aspects). On Thursday, the CFS plenary confirmed the agreement and later, the Council confirmed definitively the agreement.
FIAN says also that they are satisfied with the final result and adds that the open issues, left in July during the IGWG III were solved. All issues of interest for FIAN are solved in a good way. Part V on International Issues is now introduced by new Guidelines asking all states to implement the international part of the text, even using the word "should" (States should…)
In consequence, the planned fourth IGWG in October did not take place.

V. International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture

The FAO International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture enters into force on 29 June 2004, 90 days after that the treaty was undersigned by enough countries in March 2004.
The treaty is a legally binding instrument and is crucial for sustainable agriculture. It provides a framework for national, regional and international efforts to conserve and to use in a sustainable way the plant genetic resources for food and agriculture, but also for sharing the benefits equitably, in line with the Convention on Biological Diversity (CDB).
As FAO writes it, the Treaty contains two important and unique elements. First, it recognizes the enormous contribution made by farmers in all regions of the world towards the conservation and development of plant genetic resources and identifies ways of protecting and promoting Farmers’ Rights. Second, it establishes a multilateral system of access and benefit sharing. This will ensure that countries have access to some of the most important plant genetic resources needed for food security. It identifies a range of benefits to be shared on a multilateral basis - benefits like information exchange, technology transfer and access, building capacity at local levels, and monetary and other benefits of commercialization. Benefits are targeted mainly to developing countries and countries with economies in transition...

See more on the FAO Website at the following address:
http://www.fao.org/documents/show_c...

VI. Meeting for the « More and better » campaign on 17-18 Septembre 2004

The international campaign MORE AND BETTER has been established to support and be a part of the fight to eradicate hunger and poverty. The campaign will advocate for increases to both the quantity and quality of assistance for agriculture, rural development and food as, an important part of eradicating extreme poverty and hunger. This goal links closely to the first Millennium Development Goal, which provides an important milestone for this campaign.

The meeting was hosted by IFAD on the 17th and 18th of September. The meeting gave the opportunity to share information about activities linked to More and Better, to define what is good assistance for agriculture and rural development, what is needed to eradicate hunger, to inform about the activities linked to More and Better in the coming months, to discuss some administrative and financial matters and to renew the coordination committee. It was also a good opportunity to coordinate the activities between involved organizations and with other networks and organizations involved into other FAO related food security issues. An important document was issued from the meeting, defining the common principles adopted by the organizations involved into the campaign.

More information is available on the following website:
http://www.moreandbetter.org

Next briefing : Briefing about the European Region activities and perspectives

Attached Documents


Out of the documents presented in the briefing, some other documents are attached here after: the report of the European Consultation and the statements that were made the Civil society speakers from the IPC during the World Food Security Committee from September 2004.

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