Director-General meets Minister for Agriculture and Livestock of Zambia
3 December 2013, Rome, Italy - FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva met today with Robert Sichinga, Minister for Agriculture and Livestock of the Republic of Zambia.During the meeting, Graziano da Silva congratulated Minister Sichinga for the adoption of the National Agriculture Investment Plan (NAIP) which FAO helped to develop. They also discussed the third round of Global Agriculture and Food Security Programme (GAFSFP), where Zambia benefits with over 30 million USD in funding.
The FAO chief congratulated Zambia with the agriculture production that allows them to be able to export maize to other neighboring countries.
They acknowledged that increased crop diversification, and productivity and processing of the agricultural sector has the potential to combat malnutrition and job creation in Zambia, based on lessons from other countries. FAO is committed to assisting the Government of Zambia to engage farmers and agro players in productivity and value addition programmes.
The Director-General and Minister Sichinga also discussed the implementation of the E-voucher system for farming subsidies as an efficient way of reaching small scale farmers. He announced that FAO is ready to provide technical assistance to the country as requested for the next farming season. The discussions touched upon risk of such transfers and ways of mitigating those risks.
Improvement of small scale mechanization was discussed and FAO Director General committed to look for ways of supporting Zambia in finding resources through South South Cooperation.