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Sustainable Development, Agreement between FAO and CIHEAM for Scientific Research and Innovation

A goal worthy of the Champions League can only be scored if there’s a strategy and teamwork. This is the appeal for the goal to sustainable development and achieving Zero Hunger by 2030.

FAO General-Director, Qu Dongyu, said on World Food Day. He also noted important partnerships such as the one with the Mediterranean agronomic studies centre, CIHEAM.

“We need strong political will and commitment,” added Dongyu during the annual ceremony. “With one in three people suffer malnutrition globally, we need to invest in nutrition and for nutrition. We need to walk hand-in-hand and build healthy and sustainable food systems. We need a plan of action.”

In Rome, the FAO chief announced the UN agency’s biannual theme for 2020-2021: Promoting healthy diets and preventing all forms of malnutrition. He also reaffirmed the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nation’s commitment  to the goal of the objectives: ending hunger and malnutrition in all its forms by 2030.

However, he also warned how “hunger and malnutrition will be major barriers to achieving the SDGs by 2030 if we do not act now!”

“Ending hunger is imperative for justice and equity,  to which we cannot fail,” wrote Sergio Mattarella, Italy’s President in a message

However, in order to reach the goals, greater global commitment by the actors involved is required.

In this respect, the partnership between CIHEAM and FAO, plays its role. They have collaborated for years: project sharing dates back to 1977.

The Director General highlighted some of the joint areas of work tied to overcoming the enormous challenge to food, security and sustainability faced by Near Eastern and North African Mediterranean countries.

This includes joint efforts in the fields of organic farming, water scarcity, plant diseases, plant genetic resources, animal production and health in dry areas, fisheries and aquaculture, and forestry.

Among the projects developed through the partnership is a high-level technical event on the management of the Red Palm Weevil – a destructive pest that was first detected in South Asia that has since spread to attack more than 40 species worldwide with Mediterranean countries most at risk.

FAO and CIHEAM have also worked together on the Blue Hope initiative, aimed at strengthening livelihoods in coastal communities in the Mediterranean particularly affected by migrant flows.

Founded in 1962, CIHEAM is a Mediterranean intergovernmental organisation dedicated to the sustainable development of agriculture and fisheries, food and nutrition security in rural and coastal areas.

It has 13 member States (Albania, Algeria, Egypt, France, Greece, Italy, Lebanon, Malta, Morocco, Portugal, Spain, Tunisia and Turkey and operates through its four institutes based in Bari (Italy), Chania (Greece), Montpellier (France) and Zaragoza (Spain) and a General Secretariat based in Paris.

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