Bangkok, 15 May 2013 -- FAO and Thailand today signed agreements to work together on two new technical cooperation projects that will enhance the country’s quality livestock product and strengthen its capacity to address issues of land use planning, including management of the use of national resources by agro-economics zoning.
The first project will develop an effective animal identification and traceability system that will improve all aspects of livestock and beef marketing, including production, slaughter and processing as well as wholesale and retail sales. The country’s veterinary services will also be strengthened by the technical cooperation project to assure consumers that beef from Thailand meets the international standard of quality livestock products. The project is funded by FAO, which has committed US$247 000 over 18 months.
Zoning to improve sustainability and conservation of natural resources
The second project will support the country’s ongoing policy of establishing a new agricultural zoning plan to classify land areas suitable for producing food crops, bio-energy crops, or cash crops according to their suitability to different soils and agro-ecosystems. The project is funded by FAO, which has allocated US$260 000 for the project over 24 months. Agricultural land will be delineated and designated for particular crops in each area or zone. The process of zone delineation will be based on the suitability of physical factors and economic factors for specific crops. The aim is that the recommended crop in each zone will give the optimum profit to the farmers and the government. Because the suitability evaluation in the agro-economic zoning implies criteria of sustainability and conservation, the natural resource base will not be further degraded and will improve when unsuitable crops are shifted to more suitable areas.
The two technical cooperation agreements were signed on behalf of FAO by Vili Fuavao, FAO Deputy Regional Representative for Asia and the Pacific and focal point for Thailand. Tritsadee Chaosuancharoen, Director-General, Department of Livestock Development signed the livestock project agreement for Thailand, while Apichart Jongskul, Secretary-General, Office of Agricultural Economics signed the land use technical cooperation agreement for Thailand.
Projects to benefit livestock and agriculture development
FAO Assistant Director-General and Regional Representative for Asia and the Pacific, Hiroyuki Konuma, speaking at the signing ceremony, said the two projects will “contribute to the long-term benefit of livestock development, agriculture development and land use planning in Thailand.”
Konuma thanked the Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives (MOAC) for entrusting “these two important projects in Thailand to the expertise of FAO’s technical assistance programme.”
Thailand’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Agriculture and Cooperatives, Yukol Limlamthong, presided over the signing ceremony, which was held at MOAC in Bangkok.
FAO’s Technical Cooperation Programme provides member countries with the technical expertise needed to tackle technical problems in the field of agriculture, fisheries, forestry and rural livelihood. Thailand receives some US$300 000 – US$400 000 annually from FAO for national technical cooperation projects.