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Intervention by

H.E. R.M. Marty M. Natalegawa
Permanent Representative of the Republic of Indonesia
to the United Nations

 

At the Intergovernmental Preparatory Meeting of the
Commission for Sustainable Development -17
On Agriculture

 

 

New York, 24 February 2009

 

Madame Chair,

Since this is the first time my delegation is taking the floor for this session, allow me to congratulate you and other bureau members on assuming the Chair for CSD 17.

Indonesia would like to associate itself fully with the statement made by Sudan on behalf of the G77 and China. I should also like to take this opportunity to thank the Secretary General for providing a valuable report on developments in agriculture.

Madame Chair,

The paradox of today’s global food and agriculture economy is that while we are producing more food than ever, food insecurity is increasing. It is estimated that 848 million people go to bed hungry every night. The irony is that many, if not the majority, of those living in hunger and poverty are people in rural areas in developing countries involved in farming.

The nature of today’s global food and agriculture economy has marginalized agriculture sector of developing countries. While agriculture in advanced economies has progressed and flourished under a robust subsidies regime, agriculture in developing countries has been deteriorating over the last decade. Agriculture in developing countries has been deprived of adequate investments is burdened by poor infrastructure, land degradation, limited access to markets, and pressure from urbanization.

Madame Chair,

The recent food crisis has shown that the current global food and agriculture economy needs to be reformed. Such reform must take into account the impact of climate change and ensure sustainable agricultural practices.

The reform must also establish a global framework to help developing countries revitalize their agricultural sectors. This is important for the attainment of global food security.

 

In this context there are five areas we would like to highlight as being important for reform of the global agricultural sector.

First, there is a need to ensure that there are better synergies between agriculture and development policies and strategies at the national and international levels. Central to this is ensuring enhanced cooperation and involvement of all stakeholders in the design and implementation of agricultural policies and strategies. It may also be desirable to enhance legal empowerment to smallholder farmers, in particular by enhancing their property and business rights.

Second, Regional Food Security Framework that can boost regional food stocks and production should be established. This should cover at least six elements namely sustainable food production, conducive food market and food trade, food reserves for emergency relief, a surveillance system to prevent food crises, diversification of food resources and food industry development.

Third, public and private sector investment in agriculture, particularly in rural infrastructure in developing countries must be increased. This could be achieved through a combination of national budgetary allocations and private investments. Also important in this context is the role of ODA, in which its share to agriculture should be increased.

Fourth, fundamental reform in world agriculture trade needs to be expedited. Eliminating imbalances, particularly subsidies by developed countries and the development of adequate agricultural safeguard mechanisms for developing countries are central to achieving fundamental trade reform.

Finally, we believe the establishment of an active global partnership for agricultural development and food security can contribute to revitalizing developing countries’ agricultural sectors. A global partnership that can act as a “melting pot”, where the interests of all stakeholders interact, linking and matching the needs of one stakeholder to another, that aims to facilitate the development of agriculture in developing countries.

Thank you.

Permanent Mission of the Republic of Indonesia to the United Nations, New York
325 East 38th Street, New York, NY, 10016, USA
Tel: 1.212.972.8333,   Fax: 1.212.972.9780   -   www.indonesiamission-ny.org

 

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