Government

New UN office in Fiji to strengthen agricultural sector

The Minister of Agriculture, Rural and Maritime Development Hon. Inia Seruiratu this week officiated at the opening of the United Nation’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) office in at the Ministry of Agriculture headquarters in Raiwaqa. Minister Seruiratu, in his opening speech, lauded FAO’s continued support towards the growth of Fiji’s agricultural sector through the provision […]

Staff Writers

April 8, 2016 2:15 pm

The Minister of Agriculture, Rural and Maritime Development Hon. Inia Seruiratu this week officiated at the opening of the United Nation’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) office in at the Ministry of Agriculture headquarters in Raiwaqa.

Minister Seruiratu, in his opening speech, lauded FAO’s continued support towards the growth of Fiji’s agricultural sector through the provision of technical expertise.

The role of FAO is critical and we heavily rely on that particularly in the eradication of hunger, in food and malnutrition and nutrition security, as well as by the elimination of poverty by driving social and economic progress and the sustainable development of our resources.

Minister Seruiratu acknowledged FAO’s assistance in the formulation of the Fiji 2020 Agriculture Sector Policy Agenda that was launched by the Hon. Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama in 2013.

seruiratu-speaking
Minister of Agriculture, Rural and Maritime Development and National Disaster Management Hon. Inia Seruiratu delivering his speech at the opening of the Food and Agriculture Organization office in Raiwaqa on Tuesday. (Pacific Reach Ltd).

FAO’s Sub-Regional Coordinator for the Pacific Islands, Mr. Gavin Wall said that the opening of the Organization’s Fiji office represents an opportunity to strengthen the association in what is a two-way flow of benefits.

We believe that FAO can continue to contribute to the advancement of the food and agricultural sectors of Fiji and with the management of natural resources. However, we also look forward to a greater contribution from Fiji to the challenges facing the Pacific and global food systems.

As one sign of the stronger association, FAO has been able to mobilise US$1.3 million to help recovery from Tropical Cyclone Winston. These funds will be used to help farmers and fishers re-establish food production, help foresters harvest windblown trees, and to assist the Biosecurity of Fiji to monitor animal diseases in the wake of the cyclone.

Mr. Wall said that there will be continual support for the Government through the provision of rural agriculture data and statistics.

The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations efforts centers around the achievement of food security for all and that all human beings must have regular access to enough high-quality food to lead active and healthy lives.

Minister Seruiratu also acknowledged the Ministry’s partners in the launching of FAO office on Tuesday.

The European Union, Australian government through the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) and other key agencies that have made significant improvements not only in terms of agriculture production, but also in the value chain development.

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