125. The Council took note of the Fifth Annual Report of the UN/FAO Intergovernmental Committee (IGC) of the World Food Program to the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations and to the Council of FAO (CL 48/18). This report covered the period between 27 April 1966 and 20 April 1967. It described how the Committee had initiated the review of the Program required, under General Assembly resolution 2095(XX) and Conference resolution 4/65, before the Third WFP Pledging Conference could take place, and included in particular the Committee's recommendations concerning a target for voluntary contributions for the period 1969–1970. It also proposed a modification of the text of one of the WFP General Regulations.
126. The IGC's report was introduced by the Executive Director of the World Food Program (WFP), who pointed out that more than $40 million had now been spent for emergency relief while over $200 million in WFP resources were being invested in development projects to which the recipient governments as well as other sources were contributing a further $800 million. The resources available for the current pledging period, however, fell far short of the target and the present momentum might be difficult to sustain. He hoped that the new goal of $200 million recommended by the IGC, representing only a very modest increase over the level of the current target, would be fully attained.
127. Referring to the agreement recently negotiated in GATT for a new international food aid program, he expressed the hope that at least a substantial part of the contributions involved would be channeled through WFP. In a report transmitted to the Council by the IGC he had indicated some of the ways in which the Program could enlarge its activities if it were endowed with increased resources, and, while recognizing the preference accorded by some governments to bilateral action, he believed that there was a strong case for the United Nations family to play a major role in the new undertaking.
128. The Council welcomed the contribution being made by the Program both in meeting emergency food needs and in promoting economic and social development, and through that a proper balance should continue to be maintained between the two types of activities. Recent studies had shown, on the one hand, the dangers inherent in the present world food situation and, on the other, the vast potential for increasing both the area of cultivation and the level of yields. Particular importance was therefore attached to projects for increasing food production. It was noted that assistance from the World Food Program to meet emergencies such as drought and cyclones had been widely appreciated. Some Members observed that even emergency assistance helped economic development inasmuch as it enabled received governments to divert resources to items like minor irrigation, etc., essential for economic development.
129. A number of Members referred to the GATT agreement on food aid. While it was felt premature to comment on the institutional arrangements which might be made for handling the new program, it was generally recognized that due account should be taken of the knowledge and experience of the WFP. It was thought that both bilateral and multilateral efforts would have their place in any new program.
130. The target for voluntary contributions proposed by the IGC was felt by some Members to be modest in relation to the needs of the developing areas. The Council recognized, however, that the level was realistic when considered in the light of the contributions at present available to the Program.
131. In answer to a question, the Director-General stated that on the basis of official requests received he would be sending shortly a high-level mission to Syria and Jordan to explore, with the two governments concerned, their possible needs for emergency food assistance to evacuees and war victims following the recent events in the area. The WFP resources still available for emergency relief in 1967 were now only a little more than $5 million. If they proved inadequate to cope with the requirements, he was ready to issue an international appeal for further assistance.
132. The Council approved the change recommended by the IGC Intergovernmental Committee in WFP General Regulation 6. The modified text would read as follows:
“At the beginning of each year $7 million of the Program's resources shall be reserved for use by the Director-General of FAO for emergency food needs. Should this amount prove inadequate, a further $ 3 million in any one year may be drawn upon for such purposes. In special circumstances, the IGC may allocate further amounts for use by the Director-General to meet emergency food needs. Any unused balance of the emergency allocation will return to the general resources of the Program at the end of each year.”
133. The Council adopted the following resolution proposed by the IGC:
REVIEW OF THE WORLD FOOD PROGRAM
Having considered the Fifth Annual Report of the Intergovernmental Committee of the World Food Program and the report of the Executive Director of the World Food Program transmitted by the Committee;
Noting the recommendations of the Intergovernmental Committee concerning the target for voluntary contributions for the period 1969/70;
Recalling that the potentialities of the World Food Program were recognized by the General Assembly and the FAO Conference in Resolution 2095(XX) and Resolution 4/65 respectively:
Submits for the consideration and approval of the Conference the annexed draft resolution;
Appeals to Member States of the United Nations and Member Nations and Associate Members of the Food and Agriculture Organization to undertake the necessary preparation for the announcement of pledges at the Third Pledging Conference for the World Food Program;
Recommends that, in any consideration of a possible increase in the level of international food aid, due account be taken of the part which could be played by the World Food Program.
Annex: DRAFT RESOLUTION FOR THE CONFERENCE
World Food Program
Recalling the provisions of Resolution 4/65 that the World Food Program is to be reviewed before each Pledging Conference and that, subject to the review so provided for, the next Pledging Conference “should be convened in 1967, at which time governments would be invited to pledge contributions for 1969 and 1970, with a view to reaching such target as may be recommended by the General Assembly and the Conference of the Food and Agriculture Organization”;
Noting that a review of the Program was undertaken by the Intergovernmental Committee of the World Food Program at its Eleventh Session and by the Council at its Forty-Eighth Session;
Having considered resolution 5/48 of the Council, as well as the recommendations of the Intergovernmental Committee and the report of the Executive Director;
Recognizing the value of multilateral food aid both as a form of capital investment and for meeting food needs:
Establishes for the two years 1969 and 1970 a target for voluntary contributions of $200 million, of which not less than one third should be in cash and services, and urges States Members of the United Nations and Member Nations and Associate Members of the Food and Agriculture Organization to make every effort to ensure the full attainment of the target;
Invites the Secretary-General of the United Nations, in co-operation with the Director-General of FAO, to convene a pledging conference at United Nations Headquarters [early in 1968];
Urges governments which have pledged contributions of commodities or services for the period 1966–68 to make every possible effort to carry over and make available for the period 1969–70 any portion of such pledges which may remain unused at the end of 1968, and to indicate their readiness to effect such a carryover when announcing pledges at the Third Pledging Conference;
Decides that the next following pledging conference, subject to the review provided for in Resolution 4/65, should be convened at the latest early in 1970, at which time governments would be invited to pledge contributions for 1971 and 1972 with a view to reaching such target as may be recommended by the General Assembly and the FAO Conference.
134. With respect to the target for voluntary contributions, some Members were unable to associate themselves at the present stage with the specific figure proposed although they supported the Resolution as a whole.