Friday, 4 October 2013
African and Arab Ministers of Agriculture agreed to strengthen the Africa-Arab Cooperation through Promoting Sustainable and Sensible Investment in Agriculture and Food Security
Riyadh, KSA – 2 October 2013 – “We can make the Africa-Arab Cooperation a powerful instrument to enhance trade and investment to the desired levels that match the strong cultural ties, the geographic proximity and the tremendous potential that exist within our regions”, said Mrs. Tumusiime Rhoda Peace, Commissioner for Rural Economy and Agriculture, African Union Commission.
Speaking at the opening session of the 2nd Africa Arab Ministerial Meeting on Agricultural development and Food Security that opened today, 2 October 22013, in Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, at the ministerial level, Commissioner Rhoda Peace took note of the fact that the level of Arab investment in African agriculture has been increasing but could be much higher than what it is today. “African agriculture and, in particular the food sector, offers a huge potential for trade and investment.” added Commissioner Rhoda Peace.
AU Commissioner for Rural Economy and Agriculture informed the meeting that the African Union and its Member States have reaffirmed that sustainable agricultural growth; food and nutrition security concerns should be effectively and properly addressed to meet the challenges of transformation and development. “This commitment is demonstrated by the formulation, adoption and subsequent rolling out of an overarching continental framework, the Comprehensive Africa Agriculture Development Programme (CAADP), that guides strategies, policies, programmes and collective actions to enhance agricultural development and achieve food and nutrition security objectives”, said Commissioner Rhoda Peace.
The Ministerial meeting has been addressed by Dr. Fahad Bin Abdul Rahman Balghunaim, Minister of Agriculture, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Chair of the 2nd meeting; the outgoing Chair, Mr. Ayman Abu Hadid, Minister of Agriculture and Land Reclamation, the Arab Republic of Egypt and Dr. Mohammed bin Abrahim Al Twaijri, Assistant Secretary General for Economic Affairs of the League of Arab States.
Worth calling that African and Arab ministers of Agriculture and representatives of the African Union Commission, Arab League of States and a number of related organisations, institutions and associations from the Arab and the African Regions met within the framework of the Joint Africa-Arab Partnership (JAP), to further Strengthening Africa-Arab Cooperation through Promoting Sustainable and Sensible Investment in Agriculture and Food Security.
The ministerial meeting held under the theme “Strengthening Africa-Arab Cooperation through Promoting Sustainable and Sensible Investment in Agriculture and Food Security in the context of the Joint Action Plan (JAP) was preceded by a two day meeting of experts, held on 29 and 30, October.
Delegates to experts’ meeting reviewed the progress made thus far within the Africa Arab partnership. It also formulated proposals for Ministers’ consideration and further guidance in expediting the implementation of the Joint Action Plan that the First Joint Ministerial Conference adopted in Sharm El Sheikh in 2010 and was subsequently endorsed by the Africa-Arab Summit.