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Press Release 00/29

EGYPT, MALAWI SIGN AGRICULTURAL ASSISTANCE ACCORD AS PART OF FAO'S SPECIAL PROGRAMME FOR FOOD SECURITY


Rome, 17 May 2000-- The governments of Egypt and Malawi signed a tripartite agreement with the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) to send Egyptian experts and agricultural technicians to assist Malawian agriculture, the UN agency announced today. The cooperative accord, signed yesterday evening within the framework of FAO's Special Programme for Food Security (SPFS), will place the technical assistance services of Egypt at the disposal of Malawi for up to three years, stressing a spirit of continuing cooperation between the two African countries.

According to the agreement, Egypt will provide technical assistance in the form of four experts and 90 field technicians who will provide the most appropriate technological knowledge and skills required to maximise technical cooperation in areas such as small farm irrigation, poultry production, animal husbandry, water control and aquaculture. One expert and 19 technicians will be fielded within days of signing the agreement. The remaining experts and technicians will follow in subsequent years. The agreement is aimed at improving living conditions of poor and vulnerable groups in rural areas of Malawi. The initiative will be funded by the governments of both countries and FAO.

According to FAO, South-South Cooperation under the SPFS provides an opportunity to strengthen cooperation among developing countries at different stages of development with the support of interested donor countries and FAO. The initiative helps countries benefit from the experience and expertise of more advanced developing countries. FAO launched the South-South Cooperation Scheme at the beginning of 1997.

The Special Programme for Food Security is operational in 60 countries - 36 in Africa, 13 in Asia and the Near East, 7 in Latin-America, 2 in Europe, and 2 in Oceania. In 18 LIFDCs, the SPFS is in various stages of formulation.

The agreement was signed at FAO Headquarters in Rome by Nehad Ibrahim Abdel-Latif, Ambassador of Egypt and Permanent Representative to FAO and witnessed by FAO Assistant Director-General, Technical Cooperation Department, Mr. Henri Carsalade. Malawi's Minister for Agriculture and Member of Parliament, Mr. Leonard Mangulama, signed the agreement on 7 April with the FAO Representative to Malawi, Ms. Susan Mills.

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To learn more about FAO's Special Programme on Food Security and "South-South" cooperation, please visit the FAO web site at: http://www.fao.org/spfs/

Contact:

John Riddle
Media Relations
Telephone: (39) 06 57 05 32 59
E-Mail: john.riddle@fao.org


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