Hamid Khan Wazir
The aim of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, as defined in its Constitution, is to: raise levels of nutrition and standards of living; secure improvements in food production and distribution; better the conditions of rural people and; contribute toward an expanding world economy and ensure freedom from hunger.
The FAO has 191 member nations, one associate member and one member organization, the European Union. The Council comprises 49 Member States, elected by the Conference for three-year terms. One-third of the members retire each year. An independent Council chair is appointed by the Conference for a renewable two-year term.
The Country Programming Framework sets out three priority areas to guide FAO partnership with the Government of Pakistan bringing together innovative international best practices and global standards with national and regional expertise during the 5 years from 2018 to 2022.
Under this priority area 1, FAO will support the review, development and implementation of national and provincial nutrition and gender sensitive agriculture policies, frameworks, strategies and guidelines to create an enabling environment for sustainable agricultural development in Pakistan. The focus will be on strengthening stakeholders’ capacity for improved governance of the agricultural sector, for cross-sectoral coordination and technical support for evidence-based policy making. Institutional capacities of key national and provincial government departments will be strengthened in policy processes during the implementation period of the CPF.
FAO work will also support the establishment and utilization of national and provincial agriculture and food information systems. Development and dissemination of knowledge products such as Food Security and Nutrition Information system, aimed to provide food security and policy analysts, decision makers and other stakeholders with reliable access to statistics on wider information across agricultural production and trade, economic growth and well-being, market prices, consumption, food security and nutrition will be prioritized. FAO will also strengthen the capacity of federal and provincial government officials, family farmers, market actors to utilize national/provincial agriculture, water and food information systems.
Under Priority area 2, FAO will utilize its national and international expertise to support government agriculture departments, national, provincial and district level disaster management authorities, family farmers and livestock keepers to anticipate and respond to factors affecting food security and nutrition through providing training in agro ecology, climate resilient agriculture, water smart initiatives, DRR/DRM strategies and prevention and control of livestock diseases. Resilience of vulnerable farmers and government capacities to support communities to adapt to climate change will be improved and strengthened. To streamline social protection systems, FAO will initiate and strengthen risk transfer mechanisms, including crop and livestock insurance schemes and access to financial institutions, at district and provincial levels. To promote and develop key ecosystems, sustainable forest and rangeland management will be supported by strengthening policies and pilot initiatives to adopt innovative approaches to forest management and restoration whilst enhancing local livelihoods, capacity building of personnel and stakeholder awareness rising from community to decision makers.
The Priority area 3 deals with inclusiveness and gender equality in agri-food systems at all stages of the value chain from the agricultural producer to the market are crucial to ensure sustainable agriculture development. FAO will work with all value chain actors, including facilitators service providers and enablers public sector of value chains using a “systems approach” to address issues and constraints that lead to the exclusion and marginalization of stakeholders along the chain as well as promote information exchange, increase efficiency, upgrade value chains and connect family farmers with markets. FAO will support the establishment of competitive gender-sensitive and gender specific value chain processes with increased value addition and improved quality and safety compliance. Value chains for selected commodities will be supported through capacity development of market actors to increase their efficiency, and application of improved value addition and safety practices. In support of agribusiness and food value chains, in the next five years FAO will also focus on enabling environmental aspects and capacity development of government agriculture staff for market facilitation; strong engagement with private sector, in particular in establishing linkages between value chain actors and financial institutions.