Country Statement of the Honorable Minister for National Food Security and Research of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, to IFADs Fortieth Session of the Governing Council
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President IFAD Mr. Kanayo Nwanze,
I will start by acknowledging the contribution of Mr. Kanayo Nwanze as the President of IFAD during his two tenures. Under his leadership, IFAD has launched a number of successful initiatives which stand in testimony of his vision and deep insight into the subject of rural development for tackling the challenge of poverty since an overwhelming majority of the poor live in rural areas. We value your contribution, Mr. President to the furtherance of objectives of the Fund.
We would also like to congratulate IFAD for the flagship conference on ”Investing in inclusive rural transformation and Innovative approaches to financing” which it organized in January with the Italian Ministry of Finance as well as some other institutions. The Conference highlighted the importance of inclusive finance for rural small holders and businesses, a theme that is pivotal to achieve an inclusive development of the rural sector.
We also welcome the recently approved corporate approach on South-South and Triangular Cooperation, and IFAD’s work in the areas of technical cooperation and investment promotion, to foster learning of development experiences and resources among the countries “of the south”.
IFAD is one of our most trusted and reliable development partner. Pakistan and IFAD share a long history of mutual cooperation in various agriculture related facets. We deeply appreciate the contribution of IFAD for rural development and food security in Pakistan, especially its ability to implement development projects in one of the most difficult mountainous areas of the country, such as Gilgit-Baltistan, Azad Jammu and Kashmir and Baluchistan.
As in many other countries, national food security is one of the key priority areas for the Government of Pakistan and is also part of the Government’s Vision-2025. A national Food Security Policy is also being formulated to institutionalize the policy framework for the food security at the national level. However, we are fully cognizant of the fact that the national food security is directly associated with the agricultural development in Pakistan and the Government is making all efforts in that direction.
Our major focus is to support small farmers and promote small scale innovative technologies, value addition and value chain development in the country. Government of Pakistan in coordination with provincial governments as well as international research organizations and development partners is striving to launch initiatives to promote these activities. All these efforts aim at promoting the betterment of small farmers through good agricultural practices on one hand and to provide safe and nutritious food to our local and foreign consumers on the other.
I thank you all.