Uzbekistan pledges full support to FAO’s Hand-In-Hand Initiative
FAO Director-General QU Dongyu today met with Uzbekistan’s Minister of Agriculture, Jamshid Khodjaev who pledged his country’s full support for FAO’s new Hand-In-Hand Initiative that focuses on the most vulnerable regions including Small Island Developing States, Landlocked Developing Countries, Least Developed Countries and those suffering from protracted food insecurity.
Uzbekistan will host FAO’s Regional Conference for Europe in Tashkent from 5-7 May 2020, and will also work closely with FAO’s Regional Office for Europe and Central Asia to ensure its success, Minister Khodjaev said. Key themes for the Regional Conference include: i) sustainable food systems and healthy diets and ii) rural youth, employment in relation to the UN Decade of Family Farming.
The FAO Director-General expressed his willingness to make the Regional Conference an effective platform for the mutual learning among member states. He suggested the formulation of a regional action plan and priorities to speed up the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals and the 2030 Agenda through better design of policies.
During their meeting on the sidelines of the Global Forum for Food and Agriculture, Minister Khodjaev strongly welcomed the Memorandum of Understanding between FAO and Shanghai Cooperation Organisation – of which Uzbekistan in a member - describing it as a historic document. He also noted that Uzbekistan has recently joined the FAO-hosted International Plant Protection Convention and is in the process of adhering to the International Treaty for Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture.
Agreeing with the FAO Director-General on the importance of developing digital agriculture, something which his country is keen on doing, Minister Khodjaev described as very interesting the FAO-designed concept for an International Digital Council for Food and Agriculture.