Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific

Media advisory - Press briefing, Wednesday 09 March 2011

Bangkok, Asia, 04 Mar 2011 -- Rising food prices in Asia

Global food prices increased for the eighth consecutive month in February, with prices of all commodity groups rising again, except for sugar. FAO expects a tightening of the global cereal supply and demand balance in 2010/11. In the face of a growing demand and a decline in world cereal production in 2010, global cereal stocks this year are expected to fall sharply.

With 2/3 of the world’s population living in Asia, and with most of the poor and hungry - who are most vulnerable to rising food prices - living in this region, FAO in close collaboration with the Asian Development Bank (ADB), ASEAN, the European Union (EU), SAARC and the USA government is holding a consultation with senior officials of FAO member countries in Asia designed to bring together development partners and to help governments identify effective policy and programmatic measures and options to respond to the current rise in food prices.

High level agriculture, trade and finance representatives from 20 Asia countries are attending this Regional consultation on policy and programmatic actions to address high food prices in Asia on 9 and 10 March 2011 in Bangkok with the view to designing policies that better address rising food prices.

Also in attendance are other FAO partners such as UNDP, ESCAP, WFP, UNICEF, and Japan, as well as producer organizations, the private sector and civil society organizations.

Journalists and news organizations are invited to attend the opening ceremony of the consultation on Wednesday 9 March, 08:30-09:30 hours in the Ballroom, 2nd floor at the Royal Orchid Sheraton Hotel, 2 Charoen Krung Road, Soi 30, Siphya Bangrak, Bangkok.

Media interviews can be arranged during the 10:15 to 10:45 h coffee break.

What: Opening session of regional policy seminar

Who: Hiroyuki Konuma, Assistant Director-General and FAO Regional Representative for Asia and the Pacific, and high level representatives from ADB, ASEAN, EU, SAARC and USA

When: Wednesday 09 March 2011, 08:30-09:30 hours

Where: Royal Orchid Sheraton Hotel, Bangkok

Media need to register at entrance to venue. A valid press card or letter of assignment on company stationary, plus picture ID, required.