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Crop Biotech Update

Structural Changes Needed in Agriculture Says FAO DG

November 26, 2010

Boosting investment in agriculture is the key to long-term food security. Hence, there is urgent need for structural changes in the agricultural system, said Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) Director-General Jacques Diouf in his address to the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Ministerial Forum on Agricultural Investment in Abu Dhabi. The gathering was attended by representatives of Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the host country, the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

"The food price and economic crises have had a severe impact on millions of people in all parts of the world," he said. "These trends can have severe implications for countries like the Gulf countries, which depend on commercial imports for a large share of their food consumption needs."

Short term structural changes to improve food security include targeted safety nets and social protection programs, reliable, and timely information on food commodity markets, and access to means of production and technologies. Medium and longer term strategies require investment in agriculture.

The FAO press release is at http://www.fao.org/news/story/en/item/47881/icode/.