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A statement by FAO Director-General José Graziano da Silva

14 November 2013

 

FAO-IFAD-WFP Expo Milano Participation Contract

 

Your Excellency Emma Bonino, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Italy,

Mr Kanayo Nwanze, President of IFAD

Ms Claudia von Roehl, representing WFP

Mr Giuseppe Sala, Chief Executive Officer, Expo 2015,

Mr Eduardo Rojas, United Nations Commissioner-General for Expo 2015

Ambassadors, Permanent Representatives, Distinguished guests,

UN colleagues, Ladies and gentlemen


It is a great pleasure to officially confirm today the UN's participation in the Expo 2015, in Milano.

FAO is honored to have been tasked by Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon with the responsibility of coordinating UN participation at Expo, together with the UN Rome-based agencies.

Expo is an excellent opportunity for the UN system to collectively demonstrate our commitment and will to achieve greater coherence, effectiveness and efficiency in meeting global challenges.

The theme of this Expo is at the core of the mission of the United Nations and of the mandates of the Rome-based agencies, FAO, WFP and IFAD: “Feeding the planet, Energy for life”.

It touches upon food security and nutrition, sustainability, poverty reduction, development, and cooperation. Consultations have resulted in a United Nations system-wide consensus to bring the vision of a sustainable, hunger-free world to Expo Milano 2015.

That is what the entire UN System is working for and it is a central element in the shaping of the post-2015 development agenda.

At the Rio+20 Sustainable Development Conference in 2012, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon summed this up in the Zero Hunger Challenge.

This challenge, which has embraced by different governments and the UN System, calls for something new—something bold, but long overdue: eradicating hunger within our lifetime.

We hope to present the Zero Hunger vision to an expected 20 million visitors. One hundred and thirty-five countries have already confirmed their participation at Expo, which covers over 86 percent of the world population.

Ladies and gentlemen,

The magnitude of the task before us will require decisive action and the highest levels of collaboration.

Governments, civil society, farmers, food producers, other businesses, scientists and everyone who cares about ending hunger and promoting sustainability, need to come together and work for this outcome.

With its worldwide appeal, Expo 2015 has the power to inspire a large audience and engage their support.

Thank you for your attention.