The thirty-second FAO Regional Conference for Asia and the Pacific took place in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia from 10 to 14 March 2014. Prior to this conference Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) from Asia and the Pacific organized a two-day Consultation starting from 8 March, 2014. AFSN, a part of IFSN, participated in this consultation. Ahmed Borhan, AFSN Regional Coodinator attended the consultation along with 40 participants from 10 countries and 12 constituencies. The consultation primarily focused on developing joint positions on different key issues in line with the agenda of the FAO Regional Conference. During the consultation participants discussed common concerns as to the future of smallholder and landless farmers and pertinent issues. Apart from the CSOs, the opening session of the Consultation was also attended by Hiroyuki Konuma, FAO Assistant Director-General and Regional Representative for Asia and the Pacific who welcomed the CSOs to the upcoming FAO Regional Conference for Asia and the Pacific.
The CSO consultation concluded with a joint CSO statement where the interest of small producer was given the highest priority.
Following the CSO Consultation, the 32nd session of the FAO Regional Conference for Asia and the Pacific was hosted by the Ministry of Industry and Agriculture, Government of Mongolia. The conference focused on the opportunities and challenges in the region and priority areas of work to improve food security and nutrition, increase agricultural productivity, raise the standard of living in rural populations and contribute to sustainable economic growth.
Representatives from 41 member countries participated in the regional Conference. Observers from 1 Associate Members Nation, 1 non-member Nation, 10 international non-governmental organizations and 11 intergovernmental organizations were in attendance. Representatives of 4 other UN organization also participated.
As part of the CSOs, Asia Food Security Network took part in the conference where the CSO members played the role of observers. At the conference the CSOs presented their written statement where AFSN contributed as a member. During the conference, the AFSN representative Ahmed Borhan also had opportunities to interact with the FAO representative in Mongolia and also FAO-DG. As a participant from Bangladesh, he also exchanged view with the Bangladesh Minister for Food Advocate Md. Qamrul Islam who also attended the FAO Regional Conference.
More on the Regional Conference for Asia and the Pacific can be found here: http://www.fao.org/about/meetings/aprc32/en/
Photo: 3. FAO/N. Baterdene