The Arab Republic of Egypt will receive the support of the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA) in the lead-up to the Conference of the Parties 27 (COP 27) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), scheduled to take place in November in the resort city of Sharm el-Sheikh.
The agreement was reached between Manuel Otero, Director General of IICA, and Yasmine Fouad, Minister of the Environment of the North Africa nation, who met virtually to give shape to the format of the support, which will be aimed at generating and transferring scientific knowledge on food and nutrition security, agriculture and innovation, and how they relate to climate change.
IICA will also support the COP 27 organization through the hemispheric platform it is a part of alongside other organizations and that offers a favorable environment for agriculture sector representatives and officials from the countries of the Americas to exchange perspectives on how the agriculture sector should operate and position itself in international negotiations on climate change, especially with regards to countries’ participation in the Conference in November.
“We have engaged in important, constructive and productive dialogue with Minister Fouad, in which we emphasized two lines of joint action, namely: environmental negotiation networks and the large-scale generation of scientific knowledge to reinforce the importance of agriculture and its connection to climate change”, explained the Director General of IICA at the close of the conversation.
“IICA’s political-strategic platform is at the service of the organization and success of COP 27”, added Otero.
In the meeting, Minister Fouad referred to the importance of the role of science and of the availability of information on advances in climate action and the search for effective, viable solutions. She also pinpointed several points of possible cooperation with IICA, among which she highlighted the Institute’s extensive communication networks, its close relationship with its Member States and its areas of specialization.
“IICA can support the upcoming COP 27 climate conference with a technical-scientific document on the relationship between food security and the effects of climate change, including methods of knowledge transfer in topics related to food security, agriculture and innovation, so as to help to address the hopes and needs of developing countries and establish a basis for dialogue and discussion” in Sharm el-Sheikh, expressed the Egyptian minister.
In the Americas, the lead-up to COP 27 will include important milestones, which will see IICA working together with its Member States to ensure their needs are duly reflected and addressed, always putting farmers at the center and drafting modern, effective public policies that ensure a balance between productivity and sustainability.
These milestones include a meeting of the Ministers and Secretaries of Agriculture of the Americas in late May regarding the sector’s positions at COP 27. The same topic will be addressed by the Director General of IICA in June at the Summit of the Americas to be held in the city of Los Angeles, USA, and will also be a central issue of discussion at a meeting planned for late July with the ministers of the Americas and Africa.
Moreover, in September, prior to the Sharm el-Sheikh summit, the Ministers and Secretaries of Agriculture of the Americas will meet in person at IICA headquarters in San Jose.
IICA is working closely with the countries to assimilate the Koronivia Joint Work on Agriculture, an initiative that recognizes the particular vulnerability of agriculture to climate change and the threat it poses to food security.
The process will address topics related to soil, nutrient use, water, livestock, adaptation evaluation methods and the socioeconomic and food security-related dimensions of climate change in the agriculture sector.
IICA’s top official also emphasized repeatedly the importance of reaching consensus and highlighting at international forums like the COP 27 the key role played by agriculture as part of the solution to climate challenges, as well as the importance of advances being made in the sector to promote the transition to more inclusive, resilient and sustainable agrifood systems.
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