Iran urges FAO to promote food systems, digital technologies in agriculture

September 1, 2020 - 14:34

TEHRAN – In an address to the 35th session of the Regional Conference for Asia and the Pacific of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), Iran underscored the need to increase investment in food systems and promote the use of digital technologies as the two key factors to boost both productivity and sustainability of agricultural activities.

The Iranian delegation shared its concerns regarding the increasing challenges the agriculture sector faces at both regional and global scales, particularly highlighting the adverse effects of climate change, the lack of knowledge-loaded agricultural practices, low-skilled workforce, the prevalence of poverty in rural communities, and youth emigrations.
The 4-day conference, which started on Tuesday, is focused on, among other things, the impact of COVID-19 on food and agriculture; setting regional priorities to manage water for agriculture under conditions of water scarcity; building sustainable and resilient food systems; harnessing innovation and digital agriculture and implementing FAO’s Hand-in-Hand Initiative – as an evidence-based, country-led and country-owned program forged to accelerate the agricultural transformation and sustainable rural development to eradicate poverty, and end hunger and all forms of malnutrition across the region, according to a press release published by FAO Representation in Iran.
The event provides an inclusive platform to examine ways forward to strengthen the resilience of agro-food systems and livelihoods and mitigate the effects of COVID-19 and climate change on agricultural sectors.
Along with its 46 member nations, the private sector, and civil society organizations in the region, FAO convened the conference.
Home to more than half a billion of the world’s undernourished people, Asia and the Pacific region due to COVID-19-linked lockdowns is experiencing an economic slowdown, widespread job losses, collapsing incomes, and falling remittances that further threatened the food security and increased the acute hunger in the region.
These circumstances require collective efforts and FAO and its national counterparts call on all stakeholders and interested groups to link the arms to tackle these converging challenges in Asia and the Pacific.

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