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Report of the Seventh Session of the Committee on Agriculture (Rome 21-30 March 1983) 1

47. The Council expressed its appreciation f or the work of the Committee on Agriculture (COAG) and endorsed the conclusions and recommendations of the Report of its Seventh Session. It considered that the Committee’s review and recommendations had an important impact on the formulation and implementation of the Organization’s Programme of Work in the agricultural sector.

Review of FAO’s Programme of Work in the Food and Agriculture Sector

48. The Council noted that the first part of the Committee’s agenda covered three closely related items, viz: Implementation of the Programme of Work 1982—83, Medium—and Long—Term Outlook, and Summary Programme of Work and Budget 1984—85.

49. It was noted that the period of the programme review under the first item had been extended to three years (1980—82 inclusive) and welcomed the fact that under Major Programme 2.1 Agriculture extra—budgetary funds for field programmes had been mobilized to the extent of four times the Regular Programme allocation. The Council also welcomed the considerable rise in technical support of field projects and increased direct support to member countries.

50. While being aware that the comprehensive detailed evaluation of the Regular and Field Programmes, including in—depth reviews of selected sub—programmes, would be considered by the Conference in November, the Council felt that further improvements could be made in the implementation review to permit COAG to undertake an in—depth review of specific sub—programmes or programme elements on a selective basis, so as to better advise the Council and the Conference.

51. The Council agreed with the Committee’s conclusion that the long—term goals and medium—term objectives and strategies as presented by the Secretariat •took fully into account the major problems of the agricultural sector, and indicated the tasks to be undertaken by the Organization in order to support developing countries in their efforts to achieve satisfactory growth rates in food production.

52. The Council endorsed the Committee’s conclusion that the priorities embodied in the proposed Programme of Work and Budget 1984—85 for Major Programme 2.1: Agriculture reflected the recommendations of various intergovernmental bodies of FAO and responded to the objectives described in the Long— and Medium—Term Outlook. It also agreed with the Committee’s recommendations to give highest priorities to food production and food security, research and technology development, training and follow—up to WCARRD including the role of women, as well as to the special problems of Africa.

(a) Programme 2.1.1: Natural Resources

53. The Council endorsed the priorities accorded by the Committee to integrated plant nutrition systems, small—scale irrigation development, soil and water conservation, control of salinity and water logging, and small farm development under the Natural Resources Programmer.

54. The Council agreed that the expansion and intensific4tion of production should not be at the risk of degradation of land and water resources and endorsed FAO’s approach of mixed farming systems based on sound land use planning. It called for increased attention to soil and water conservation and desertification control at the country level,

55. The Council supported FAO’s emphasis on small—scale irrigation development involving farmer participation particularly in Africa and increasing irrigation efficiency through improved techniques and on—farm water management.

56. The Council expressed concern over the declining rate in the use of fertilizers in developing countries and supported the integrated plant nutrition system approach, combining the efficient use of mineral fertilizers with organic materials and application of biological nitrogen fixation. It appealed to donors for increased support to the International Fertilizer Supply Scheme (IFS),

57. The Council endorsed FAO’s multi—disciplinary approach to improved farming systems aimed at increasing rural productivity within the limitations of the agro—ecological zone and within the existing socio—economic environment.

(b) Programme 2.1,2: Crops

58. The Council endorsed the high priority given to increasing food crop production and the need for implementing well—designed food crop production projects, particularly in Africa. It stressed the need for strengthening activities related to sorghum, millet, pulses, as well as plantains, roots and tubers and requested that further shifts be considered within the final version of the Programme of Work for 1984—85 for increasing resources in these areas. The Council also agreed with the increased emphasis on horticultural production including the essential marketing aspects.

59. The Council agreed with the Committe's recommendation that major efforts were required to strengthen seed production and distribution, particularly in Africa on staple food crops and in Asia on upland rice. It supported the activities of the Seed Improvement and Development Programme and appealed to donors to continue their support. It supported the attention being given to seed security and seed campaigns. The Council stressed the importance of unrestricted exchange of seed and planting material free from diseases and pests, for variety testing and breeding work.

60. The Council recognized the importance of plant protection to be pursued as an integral part of increased crop production, and endorsed the proposed global strategy on crop protection with emphasis on the strengthening of national and regional plan protection services and organizations, as well as on integrated pest management and the development and transfer of plan protection technology suited to the needs of small farmers.

61. The Council endorsed the expansion of the scope of the Special Action Programme for the Prevention of Food Losses to include perishable fruits and vegetables, in addition to its central focus on staple cereals, food legumes, roots and tubers. The Council appealed for increased contributions to the Special Account of this important action programme.

62. The Council recogriized the importance of appropriate mechanization and stressed that particular emphasis should be given to improved farm and irrigation implements, animal draught power and equipment suited to small farmers to help subsistence farming to achieve higher levels of productivity. The Council supported the activities on improved storage and farm buildings and on conservation and processing of agricultural products especially for the small farm sector and stressed the need for FAO to provide policy advice, training and practical technical assistance in these fields.

(c) Programme 2.1.3: Livestock.

63. The Council fully supported the components of the livestock programme and agreed that the better utilization of feed resources, the introduction of well—defined breeding programmes together with improved animal health services and disease control would contribute significantly to supporting increased animal production in the future. The Council stressed that sufficient feed resources, both in quantity and quality, should form the basis of all animal improvement programmes and animal health measures.

64. The Council expressed satisfaction that the Programme was directed at small farmers and that training at all levels would continue to receive emphasis. It welcomed the priority given to the integration of livestock into existing farming systems in order to attain improved resource utilization and stressed the importance of animal products processing and marketing for the small farm sector which would be fully taken into consideration. The Council endorsed the work on draught animal power, including buffalo, with due recognition to local conditions.

65. The Council stressed the need for the full integration of extension activities in animal production and animal health at the farm level and urged that action be taken to identify livestock insurance schemes that might be adopted, particularly for smallholders.

66. The Council also stressed that, in addition to large ruminants, emphasis must continue to be given to small animal production including sheep and goats, pigs, poultry and rabbits. The Council appreciated the contribution of the International Meat Development Schemes (IMDS), the International Scheme for the Coordination of Dairy Development (ISCDD) and the Programme for the Control of African Animal Try panosomiasis and Related Development as a means of promoting integrated agricultural development and of channelling financial resources into such development.

(d) Programme 2.1.4: Research Support

67. The Council endorsed the activities carried out under research support, and reaffirmed its support for the emphasis placed on research planning, organization and managements, strengthening of linkages between research, extension and farmers, and evaluation of national research programmes.

68. The Council concurred with the recommendations of COAG with regard to the establishment of a new Division of Research and Technology Development, incorporating four existing units, namely the Research Development Centre, the TAC (Technical Advisory Committee) Secretariat, the Environment and Energy Programmes Coordinating Unit and the Remote Sensing Centre. It fully endorsed the emphasis and priority given to research and technology development in the new Programme of Work and Budget 1984—85.

69. The Council stressed the need for in—service training courses to improve the professional competence and efficiency of national staff engaged in research and technology transfer programmes. It reemphasized the need for the expansion and strengthening of intercountry cooperation through cooperative research and technology transfer networks.

(e) Programme 2.1.5: Rural Development

70. The Council agreed with the high priority accorded to rural development and reaffirmed the validity of the framework provided by the Declaration of Principles and Programme of Action of WCARRD for FAO’s technical assistance to countries in this area.

71. The Council welcomed FAO’s continuing role as .lead agency of the ACC (Administrative Committee on Coordination) Task Force on Rural Development and supported the increased emphasis on country level activities, the follow—up action to recommendations of the FAO Regional Conferences, support to the Technical Cooperation among Developing Countries (TCDC) activities and the Regional Agrarian Reform and Rural Development Centres. The Council regretted that extra—budgetary funds provided for activities to follow—up WCARRD fell considerably short of needs and called for more extra—budgetary funds to be made available for the programme.

72. The Council fully supported activities to strengthen extension and training at the small producer level and improvements in support of the national systems of agricultural training and education. It appreciated the steps being taken to assist African countries to supply their middle— and high—level training needs as requested by the Twelfth FAO Regional Conference for Africa. It welcomed promotion of the use of mass media under the Development Support Communication Programme.

73. The Council stressed the need to focus on the physical infrastructure, organizational and policy aspects of improved marketing of agricultural inputs and products especially for the small farm sector; and to strengthen the linkage with credit. It welcomed the expanded activities foreseen to develop the role of women in agricultural marketing. Improved handling and grading systems and storage, as well as improved transport between the farm—gate and rural and urban markets would greatly reduce losses in the post—harvest system.

74. The Council approved the TCDC activities being promoted by FAO through the Regional Agricultural Credit Associations to harness financial resources and mobilize rural savings in order to improve the access of smallholders, especially women, to essential credit facilities. It called upon the Director—General to strengthen the Organization’s work on both livestock and crop insurance as an incentive to increased food production.

75. The Council re-emphasized the importance of FAO assistance toward improving cooperatives and similar organizations to enable small farmers and other less advantaged rural people to participate in development. This was felt to be especially important in the case of subsistence farmers. It welcomed FAO’s work with Nongovernmental Organizations (NGOs) in this regard and efforts to create organizations especially suited to rural women,

(f) Programme 2 .1 6: Nutrition

76. The Council a Feed and recommended that activities to accelerate agricultural production must be accompanied by measures to ensure improved nutrition for the poorest groups, and it supported the objective of FAO to introduce nutritional considerations in national agricultural and rural development planning and policy making and in project formulation,

77. In the area of food aid, the Council noted with satisfaction that the nutritional impact of WFP projects continued to be enhanced with advice and practical support. In this context the Council appreciated the assistance being given to improve the nutrition and health of populations living under the auspices of certain African National Liberation Movements.

78. The Council endorsed the activities in food control and contaminant monitoring to safeguard the quality and safety of food supplies in all regions and particularly welcomed the new initiative in food handling, and commended the continuing work of the FAO/WHO Codex Alimentarius Commission.

79. The Council welcomed the proposed increase in resources to support new field activities in nutrition and, in particular, placed emphasis on training and education at all levels in African countries.

(g) Programme 2.1.7: Food and Agricultural Information and Analysis

80. The Council stressed the central importance of basic statistics, the Early Warning System, food supply and demand analysis, economic situation and outlook information and socio—economic indicators, It emphasized the need to further strengthen food and agricultural information as the base for formulating development strategies, providing continuous review of the world food situation for assisting international deliberations and negotiations and for special studies and assessments. It supported additional provision of advice and technical support to the strengthening of national statistical systems, including national and regional Early Warning Systems.

81. The Council recommended the need for careful monitoring of complex interrelated factors which affect national and international food supplies, including the links between the agricultural sector and other sectors of developing countries’ economies. The Council stressed the importance of linkages among the various components of the food chain, including the linkages between food chain and the financial system.

82. The Council stressed the central nature of this programme and fully endorsed the proposals. It recommended fuller exploitation of electronic technology to provide a cost effective approach of handling large volumes of data and assuring rapid accessibility processing and dissemination.

(h) Programme 2.1 8: Food and Agriculture Policy

83. The Council expressed concern that the expansion of food production in most developing countries continued to lag behind the growth of domestic demand and inter-nationally agreed target of four percent per annum, particularly in low—income, food— deficit countries, It stressed that improvement in national plans, strategies, policies and programmes, and international action to improve this situation, would demand urgent and priority action in the medium term. It also agreed that enhanced food production and food security would depend foremost on the efforts and initiatives of developing countries as well as enhanced international assistance in aid and trade. The Council further agreed that international cooperation was needed to support local initiatives by developing countries and thus toward real improvement in world food security.

84. The Council welcomed the proposal in the area of agricultural policy analysis to analyse the role of adequate pricing and incentive policies, particularly of foodstuffs throughout the food chain, to ensure sufficient stable market supply to enable the meeting of national food demand at prices which low—income consumers could afford-

85. The Council appreciated the continuous work to be carried out with Agriculture: Toward 2000, including: updating and revision of data and information, further analysis resulting from dialogue with governments covering data at the country level, and whenever applicable, preparing specific new scenarios.

86. The Council supported proposals for agricultural sectoral planning assistance, particularly training and agricultural planning, sector analysis and programme implementation planning.

87. The Council agreed with the high priority attached toFAO activities in World Food Security, particularly the Food Security Assistance Scheme. It supported FAO’s continued assistance to the promotion of regional cooperation on food security, particularly the Regional Commission on Food Security for Asia and the Pacific, as well as the Action Committee on Regional Food Security in Latin America.

88. The Council stressed the urgent need of -resolving agricultural commodity trade problems, and emphasized the need for FAO to provide technical support to other agencies within the international community to further this end.

Malnutrition: Its Nature, Manitude and Policy Implications

89. The Council recognized the widespread prevalence of under—nutrition in the developing countries and highlighted the linkage between hunger, malnutrition and poverty. The Council agreed that nutritional considerations should be integrated into agricultural and rural development projects and national—level planning.

90. The Council emphasized the need for a better knowledge of the extent of malnutrition and endorsed the high priority being given by FAO to the preparation of the Fifth World Food Survey and to the development of the FAO Nutrition Data Bank.

91. The Council emphasized the measures of providing resources to the landless, small farmers, women and children as a means of combatting malnutrition, and it stressed the importance of education for adults, children and agricultural extension workers, male and female. The Council encouraged greater emphasis on indigenous food crops such as roots, tubers, fruits and vegetables, plantains, pulses and oil seeds as a means of increasing the quantity and quality of the diet. The importance of the seasonality of food production for the planning of agricultural and rural development strategies was also noted.

92. The Council supported the recommendations that FAO carry out various studies on malnutrition, continue adapting its methodology on the nutritional assessment of projects and that its training activities be strengthened. The Council also fully supported the nutrition strategies for Member Governments including the integration of nutrition into national policies and projects.

Selected Development Problems

93. The Council endorsed the Committee’s conclusions and recommendations with regard to the three selected development problems reviewed at its Seventh Session.

Follow-up to WCARRD: Role of Women in Agricultural Production

94. The Council welcomed and endorsed the recommendations made by the Committee concerning the role of women in agricultural production and supported the proposed medium—term programme of action. The Council stressed the importance of the planned Expert Consultations on Women in Food Production to be organized at the regional level as well as in Rome. The Council urged that TAO increase its support for training of rural women engaged in various aspects of agricultural production.

95. The Council urged FAO to emphasize women’s roles in community forestry and fuel wood development. It recommended that national agricultural development plans should take into consideration the contribution of rural women in the agricultural sector. It also endorsed FAO’s efforts to target small farmers, of which women are an important part and urged FAO to concentrate on landless rural families. The Council requested FAO to enhance the nutrition education aspects of training agricultural extension agents, both men and women. It supported FAO’s approach to implementation of the WCARRD follow—up missions, in which due attention is placed on the contribution of women in national agricultural development strategies and programmes. The Council emphatically supported  the suggestion made concerning the call for increased donor contributions to FAO field programme activities supporting the productive work of rural women.

Plant Protection — Development of a Global Strategy

96. The Council recognized the need for integrating plant protection into a wider agricultural development approach and that the level of activities needs to be tailored to each country’s level of agricultural development. It endorsed the Global Strategy for Improved Plant Protection based on the establishment of a Cooperative Action for Plant Health (CAPH) and on the reorientation of FAO’s programme in this area. It emphasized the need for improved weed control at the small farmers’ level and welcomed the action already taken by the Director—General for the establishment of a Panel of Experts on Improved Weed Management. The Council welcomed with satisfaction and recommended to step up the preparation, in close cooperation with other UN Agencies, including the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), of the code of conduct on the Distribution and Use of Pesticides which would take into consideration not only legislation/regulation matters, but also consider alternative forms of pest and disease control based on longer lasting biological, ecological and genetic factors. It stressed the importance to be given to establishing or strengthening national capabilities in developing countries for quality control of pesticides and for the monitoring of farm products and the environment.

97. The Council also expressed its support for the Committee’s recommendations for increased emphasis on integrated pest control and for the establishment of a computerized plant protection information system.

Animal Health (National and International Strategies of Action)

98. The Council reviewed and endorsed the recommendations made by the Committee regarding National and International Strategies of Action for Animal Health, including rinderpest, African animal trypanosomiasis, African swine fever and foot—and—mouth disease.

99. The Council expressed concern about the resurgence of rinderpest not only in Africa but also in the Near East and Asia.

100. Animal resources represented for these countries a capital asset of enormous value and a source of wealth for their farming populations. A sustained effort was needed to intensify rinderpest vaccine production, training of personnel and control measures for the ultimate eradication of the disease.

101. The Council welcomed the past and ongoing assistance of FAQ to various African countries and the steps which were being taken by FAO, the International Office of Epizootics (OlE) and the Organization of African Unity (OAU) together with the European Economic Community (EEC) to mobilize support for the launching of a Pan—African Rinderpest Campaign. It requested the Director—General to continue the Organization’s efforts and to appeal to the international community to make adequate financial assistance available.

102. The Council stressed that FAO was the principal international organization to support the Inter—African Bureau of Animal Resources (IBAR) of the OAU, which had been charged with the task of executing the large—scale field action required. The Council recommended that’ FAO support should cover not only technical assistance for OAU/IBAR but should also include responsibility for the backstopping and monitoring of the progress of the campaign, as well as coordination of the very substantial bilateral and multilateral donor inputs that were needed. The Council requested that a report on achievements be submitted to its next session.

103. The Council reiterated FAO’s essential role in emergency animal disease control, as well as in long—term control campaigns, particularly in view of the fact that such activities had a beneficial impact on animal production at the small farm level and helped to meet the requirements of active inter—country trade.

104. The Council confirmed its support for the Programme for the Control of African Animal Try panosomiasis and Related Development, fully recognizing the role of its activities in developing the agricultural resources of the region.

105. The Council recalled with satisfaction particularly the activities which continued to be undertaken by FAO to maintain the buffer zone in south—eastern Europe against the spread of exotic types of Foot—and—Mouth (FND) virus to European countries; and the steps which were being taken, with FAO support, to eradicate African swine fever from member countries recently infected and to prevent the entry of the disease into countries that were currently free, both in Europe and Latin America.

106. The Council endorsed the need for strengthening veterinary services for small farmers and recommended that research should be geared to specific needs of the small farmers and appropriate related technology.

Proposals for the Establishment of an International Genebank and the Preparation of a Draft International Convention for Plant Genetic Resources

107. The Council recalled FAO’s longstanding efforts and leading role in the field ofplant genetic resources. It felt strongly that there was a continuing need to raise theawareness of the international community concerning the importance of collection andconservation of plant genetic resources as a common heritage of mankind, and fosteringtheir unrestricted availability and exchange for use in present and future plantbreeding. In this connexion, the cooperation between FAO and the International Board for Plant Genetic Resources (IBPGR) was mentioned.

108. The Council noted the extensive discussion by the Committee on the Proposals for the Establishment of an International Genebank and the Preparation of a Draft Inter-national Convention for Plant Genetic Resources as requested by Conference Resolu-tion 6/81. Many members intervened to clarify and expand the views they had expressed in the Committee. Therefore, the Council welcomed and expressed its full support of the action taken by the Director—General in convening a Working Party of Member Nationsto advise him on the preparation of his report to the next session of the Council.

109. The Council made various suggestions for the preparation of the Director—General’s  report. It welcomed the offer by two members to make available facilities and experienceof their countries as special support to an international network of genebanks.

Other Matters

110. In considering the agenda for the Eighth Session of COAG the Council supported the list of selected development problems which the Committee had recommended, viz: (a) Agricultural research policy and technology transfer and development in developingcountries; (b) Food and agricultural price policies; (c) Processing of food and non—foodagricultural products; (d) Strategies for improvement of marketing and input deliverysystems for small farmers.

111. The Council agreed that this list was in line with the recommendation of its Eighty—third Session that a satisfactory balance between technical and socio—economicareas of work be ensured.

Report of the Eighth Session of the Commission on Fertilizers (Rome, 31 January — 3 February 1983) 2

112. The Council endorsed the Commission’s report and supported the recommendationscontained therein, It expressed satisfaction with the work of the Commission, particularlyin providing information and guidance to member countries.

113. The Council expressed its great concern at the decline of the world production of the three primary nutrients in 1981—82 and its possible consequence in the consumption offertilizer by the developing countries.

114. The Council agreed with the views of the Commission that the alarming stagnation of fertilizer consumption in many developing countries, in spite of the decline in  fertilizer prices, was due to the economic difficulties being experienced by those countries. The Council further agreed that shortage of foreign exchange was a major problem for fertilizer importing developing countries. It therefore endorsed the Commission’s suggestion that the Secretariat should explore the possibilities of appropriate agencies assisting countries with balance—of—payment problems. It noted with satisfaction that the Director—General was in contact with the Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in this regard, and would inform the Council in due course.

115. The Council expressed concern about the stagnation in investment in additional capacity which could lead to reduced fertilizer supplies and hence result in increased. prices and a further decrease in fertilizer consumption. The Council endorsed the Commission’s suggestion that developing countries should enter into joint ventures with other countries to take advantage of the availability of raw materials and markets for the fertilizer produced. It noted that a study on the possibilities of such joint ventures was being undertaken and looked forward to the report being circulated to members of the Commission.

116. The Council agreed in general with the conclusions and recommendations of the Commission with regard to the findings of the Consultative Working Group of the Commission, particularly those concerning the study on “Major Factors Affecting Fertilizer Supply, Demand and Prices”, the Option System, and the status of the Inter-national Fertilizer Supply Scheme (IFS). The Council further agreed with the Commission’s recommendation that the draft study on “Major Factors Affecting Fertilizer supply, demand and Prices” be appropriately updated and revised and be given wide distribution to FAO member countries and interested agencies. In this respect it was asked to further study the role played by transnational corporations in the fertilizer industry.

117. The Council strongly endorsed the findings of the Commission with regard to the usefulness of IFS and stressed the necessity to continue and strengthen the Scheme. The Council requested donor governments to channel increased resources to the Scheme.

118. The Council supported FAO’s activities on fertilizers, It urged greater effort in work related to increasing the efficiency of fertilizer use. The Council endorsed the activities on recycling organic materials and agreed on the validity of the Integrated Plant Nutrition Approach.

119. The Council endorsed the recommendations of the Commission with regard to future work. It recommended that the regular monitoring of fertilizer supply, demand and prices be continued and that member countries should be provided with this important document on an annual basis.

120. The Council agreed on the usefulness of the proposed study on the effect of price changes on fertilizer consumption and food production, on marketing systems and their efficiency and on improving the efficiency of fertilizer use.

121. The Council endorsed the Commission’s recommendation to have its next session in Rome within 24 months of its Eighth Session, with the possibility of a special session if required.

World Food Programme

Eighth Annual Report of the Committee on Food Aid Programmes (CFA) of the UN/FAO World Foo4 programme 3

122. The Executive Director introduced this item highlighting the main points contained in the Eighth Annual Report of CFA, and the past performance of WFP and drawing attention to a number of policy issues to be considered. by the Programme to enhance the role of food aid as a development tool. He also explained the plans for commemorating the Twentieth Anniversary of the Programme.

123. The Council noted with appreciation that since its incept±on in 1963, the Programme had committed more than US$5 000 million of assistance to over 1 100 development projects in 114 developing countries, besides providing more than USS1 000 million of food aid to almost 600 emergency operations in 103 countries, benefitting, in all, 170 million People. In 1982, US$613 million had been committed to 68 development projects in 37 countries, representing an increase of 13 percent over the commitments made in 1981. More than 80 percent of the commitments made in 1982 were for development projects in low— income food—deficit countries, and about half of the total went to countries in sub— Saharan Africa as part of the international effort to reverse the deteriorating food situation in that continent. At the same time, the problems of middle—income countries adversely affected by economic recession had also received due attention.

124. The Council noted that in 1982, US$193 million had been approved for 68 emergency operations, of which IEFR had provided Us$173 million. More than 500 000 tons of food had been distributed to over 11 million people. Of this, over 70 percent had gone to refugees and displaced persons. The Council also noted that in order to better equip WFP for dealing with emergencies, the Emergency Unit had been strengthened, proposals for solving management and logistical problems in the field had been submitted to and endorsed by the CFA and arrangements for evaluating selected emergency operations to provide guidance for the future were under way.

125. Considering the progress achieved during the last 20 years, the Council expressed its full and unanimous support for the Programme and cited it as a success story of particular importance to the UN system. It also recognized that efforts would have to continue on an even larger scale to meet the requirements of the growing numbers of the poor and the hungry in the developing countries in the context of their present adverse economic conditions. It also agreed with the Executive Director’s statement that the achievements of WFP, though significant and widely recognized, were not so much a reason for self—satisfaction as for a redoubling of efforts which, he emphasized, was the key-note of the Twentieth Anniversary commemorations.

126. In this context, the Council had been concerned that up to the end of 1982 the pledges for the biennium 1981—82 totalled only US$838 million against a target of US$1 000 million, but had been somewhat reassured to learn that as to the target for the biennium 1983—84, which had been fixed at US$1 200 million, pledges so far made stood at US$951 million in actual value after adjustments for currency fluctuation — the highest amount ever pledged to WFP. The Council expressed concern, however, over the decline in the actual number of donors from 99 in 1981—82, to 65 for the present biennium. The Council regarded the contributions made by developing countries to be particularly valuable as they constituted an important element of support to the multilateral and universal character of the Programme. The Council therefore stressed the importance of raising the number of developing country contributors from the present level of 41 to the level of the 1981—82 biennium when as many as 71 developing countries had contributed to the Programme.

127. The Council endorsed the pledging target of US$1 350 million for the biennium 1985—86 as unanimously approved by the Fifteenth Session of the CFA and adopted Resolution 1/83 reproduced in this report. It emphasized the importance of achieving and even surpassing it as it was the minimum necessary to sustain a steady expansion in WFP’s activities. In this context, the Council noted with interest the Executive Director’s original proposal endorsed by the Director—General of FAO and the Secretary— General of the United Nations for a pledging target of US$1 500 million based on his awareness of the growing needs of developing countries and the desirability of channelling more food aid multilaterally.

128. The Council noted that in his opening statement the Executive Director had mentioned the. need for a clearer articulation of the objectives and modalities of food aid for emergency and for consideration being given to the various categories of emergencies and to the appropriate criteria to be adopted in responding to them, and in close consultation with the Director—General of FAO as well as other agencies involved, The Council generally expressed the opinion that the present mechanisms and procedures governing allocations of emergency aid were fully adequate and there were no grounds justifying a change. Others welcomed the review proposed by the Executive Director stressing that such a review was appropriate.

129. The Council noted that the Programmehad emerged from a modest beginning to be the largest funding agency within the UN system, next to the World Bank group of institutions, had acquired a high standing and was universally esteemed. It commended the Executive Director and his staff for their excellent work and for the various innovative approaches that mark the Programme as an effective instrument for social and economic development and humanitarian assistance. It endorsed the priorities of the Programme especially the emphasis on projects for agricultural and rural development and on assistance to the low—income food—deficit countries and to those in sub—Saharan Africa. It stressed the importance of attainment of self—sufficiency in food in the recipient countries and emphasized that the ultimate goal of food aid should be to dispense with the need for food aid altogether. It drew particular attention to the complementarity of the functions of FAO and WF and emphasized the importance of close working relationship between them. In this connection reference was made to the technical services and support provided by FAO to WFP—assisted projects.

130. On the format and contents of the Annual Report, some members stressed the desirability of highlighting, for example in the Annual Report itself or by way of an explanatory memorandum in the Annual Report, the key policy ..issues and the difficulties encountered, indicating those that merited the attention of the Council; an analysis of the extent to which aid provided contributed to an increase in food production and improvement in nutritional levels and of updating the material included in the Report. The Council welcomed the Executive Director’s assurance, consistent with their administrative and financial implications, that careful consideration would be given to the suggestions made in the course of the discussions. It noted the Executive Director’s observation that the Secretariat could not update or otherwise change the Report which specifically referred to the preceding year and was prepared by the CFA for the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) and the World Food Council (WFC), as well as for the FAO Council, and any substantive expansion would be expensive. Updating could only be done by the Executive Director and would necessarily relate to figures and not to substance as was the case with the updated information note on pledging targets.

131. The Council, while emphasizing the importance of trying to sustain and even surpass the agreed level of IEFR, and the channelling of a greater proportion of it through WFP, urged traditional and possible new donors to fill in the balance of the target. Some members supported the continued holding of a joint pledging Conference for IEFR and WFP’s own resources. The Council regretted once again the non—fulfilment of the World Food Conference target of 10 million tons of cereal food aid set in 1974.

132. The Council reiterated the importance of one third of the contribution to the Programme’s resources being in cash and services, which was strongly urged, in accordance with its General Regulations. The Council urged greater use of developing countries’ shipping for the transport of WFP commodities. It emphasized increased recourse to triangular transactions, as well as local purchases of commodities, in appropriate cases.

133. The Council suggested that, as far as possible, greater use could be made of appropriate forms of fish and fish products in WFP—assisted projects, particularly since they were a convenient source of inexpensive protein. It also stressed the importance of WFP support for fisheries development projects, even to the extent of including developing country surplus fish resources within the scope of triangular transactions. It was informed that there had been only a few requests for assistanèe to projects involving fisheries development, presumably in view of their not being labour—intensive and also that short shelf—life and problems of acceptability made the widespread use of fish in WFP projects difficult. However the Council noted with satisfaction that efforts were being made by the Programme to make greater use of fish and fish products in its projects, as well as to support projects for fisheries development.

134. The Council expressed the view that the broadened and revised concept of world food security, agreed to by the CFS and endorsed by the Council, was of special relevance to the CFA and the WFP.

135. As regards the suggestion for acceptance of pledges in the form of fertilizers, the Council noted that the mandate of the Programme did not envisage handling of items other than food commodity, cash and acceptable services.

136. The Council was assured that annual fluctuations in the numbers and size of projects approved might not be a reliable indicator of the importance attached to a region, as over the long—term, every legion received a considerable share of the Programme’s assistance. For example there was a pipeline of projects for Latin America, which, if approved, would raise the percentage of WFP commitments to the region significantly.

137. The Council adopted the following resolution:

Resolution 1/83



Having considered the eighth annual report of the Committee on Food Aid Policies and Programmes,

Noting the comments of the CFA concerning the minimum target for voluntary contributions to the Programme for the period 1985—86,

Recalling resolutions 2462 (XXIII) and 2682 (XXV) of the General Assembly, which recognized the experience gained by WFP in the field of multilateral food aid,

1. Submits for consideration and approval of the Conference of FAO the following draft resolution.

2. Urges States Members of the United Nations and Members and Associate Members of the Food and Agriculture Organization to undertake the necessary preparation for the announcement of pledges at the Eleventh Pledging Conference for the World Food Programme.




Recalling the provisions of Resolution 4/65 that the World Food Programme is to be reviewed before each pledging conference,

Recalling the provisions of operative paragraph 4 of its Resolution 10/77 that, subject to the review mentioned above, the next pledging conference should be convened at the latest early in 1984, at which time governments and appropriate donor organizations should be invited to pledge contributions for 1985 and 1986, with a view to reaching such a target as may be then recommended by the General Assembly and the Conference of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations,

Noting that the review of the Programme was undertaken by the Committee on Food Aid Policies and Programmes of the World Food Programme at its Fifteenth Session and by the FAO Council at its Eighty—third Session,

Having considered Resolution 1/83 of the Council as well as the recommendations of the Committee on Food Aid Policies and Programmes,

Recognizing the value of multilateral food aid as implemented by WFP since its inception and the necessity for continuing its action both as a form of capital investment and for meeting emergency food needs,

1. Establishes for the two years 1985 and 1986 a target for voluntary contributions of $1 350 million, of which not less than one third should be in cash and/or services in aggregate, and expresses the hope that such resources will be augmented by substantial additional contributions from other sources in recognition of the prospective volume of sound project requests and the capacity of the Programme to operate at a higher level.

2. Urges States Members of the United Nations and Members and Associate Members of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations and appropriate donor organizations to make every effort to ensure the full attainment of the target.

3. Requests the Secretary—General, in cooperation with the Director—General of FAO, to convene a pledging conference for this purpose at United Nations Headquarters early in 1984.

4. Decides that, subject to the review provided for in Resolution 4/65, the following pledging conference at which governments and appropriate donor organizations should be invited to pledge contributions for 1987 and 1988 with a view to reaching such a target as may be then recommended by the General Assembly and the Conference of the Food and Agriculture Organization, should be convened at the latest early in 1986.

Twentieth Anniversary of the UN/FAO World Food Programme 4

138. The Council noted with satisfaction that it was appropriate for FAO to celebrate the twentieth anniversary of the UN/FAO World Food Programme, especially because FAO, along with the UN was one of the two parent bodies of the Programme and also because FAO was involved in one way or another in virtually all WFP projects, and that the Director— General has special responsibilities for the functioning of the Programme

139. The Council noted the genesis of the Programme, with special reference to the initiative and efforts of Dr. B.R. Sen, the then Director—General of FAO, and the decisive contribution of representatives of the United States in the establishment of the Programme.

140. On the arrangements by FAO to mark the twentieth anniversary, the Council was informed that in addition to what had been stated in the document, there would also be a joint message issued by the Secretary—General of the United Nations and the Director— General.

141. The Council complimented FAO for its initiative and arrangements to celebrate the twentieth anniversary of WFP.

142. The Council noted with satisfaction that the Programme was the largest source of multilateral development assistance besides the World Bank group of institutions. It had not only added an entirely new and innovative dimension to food aid by increasing its scope and scale, but also represented a significant stage in the world—wide campaign against hunger and malnutrition initiated by FAO, and contributed to the fulfilment of the mandate and objectives of FAO and the United Nations in the field of economic and social development.

143. The Council took note of the many aspects of the joint responsibility of the Secretary—General of the United Nations and the Director—General of FAO for the effective functioning of the Programme. The Council noted the special responsibilities of the Director—General, inter alia, for the establishment and administration of the WFP Fund, the recording of pledges and the maintenance of accounts in regard to (a) receipt of all cash income of the Programme, (b) the expenditure incurred on its behalf, (c) the receipt,movement and disposition of commodities and (d) utilization of services. The Director— General bore a special responsibility to receive, and have examined, requests from governments for emergency aid and decide upon them, taking into account the recommendations of the Executive Director.

144. The Council emphasized the complementarity in the functions of WFP and FAO as evident from the commitment of a substantial proportion of WFP resources to sectors falling within FAO's mandate and priorities, such as, stimulation of agricultural and rural development, improvement of nutritional levels and provision of infrastructure for food security. The Council commended the technical assistance and backstopping extended by FAO in ensuring the technical soundness and economic feasibility of WFP projects. The view was expressed that the nature and extent of services extended by FAO in this regard contributed to keeping its administrative expenditure at a low level. The Council reaffirmed the importance of preserving and further strengthening the close working relationship between WFP and FAO in order that the resources of both organizations could be utilized to the best advantage.

145. The Council appreciated that WFP, in all its activities, observed the two essential principles of avoiding disincentive effects on production in developing countries, and of seeking the necessary financial and technical support to enable food aid to be used most effectively. The Council stressed the need for the observance of a third principle, namely, that of not allowing food aid to be used as an instrument of political pressure and expressed its belief that WFP’s prestige depended on the balanced, non—political approach it adopted in its working and in dealing with requests for assistance. In this connexion, the CFA, the Executive Director and his staff were highly commended for their even—handed and balanced approach which should always be followed. The Council drew particular attention to the broadened and revised concept of world food security agreed in the Committee on World Food Security and emphasized the importance of the Committee on Food Aid Policies and Programmes and WFP taking the revised concept and the approaches indicated in the Director—General’s report on World Food Security into account in formulating their policies and programmes. The need to strengthen and widen the resource—base of the Programme and its management capabilities was also stressed.

146. The Council unanimously placed on record its appreciation of the work of the programme during the past 20 years and extended its support for its continued success in the future. It also expressed to all Executive Directors and WFP staff the appreciation of all who had benefitted from its assistance over the last 20 years.

147. The Council approved the arrangements being made by FAO to mark the occasion, In addition to those mentioned in paragraph 22 of document CL.83/l9, it was suggested that a special celebration could be organized for an hour or so at the time of the Conference to highlight the Programme’s contribution towards the objectives of FAO.

148. As a token of their sense of pride in participating in the Programme and associating themselves with the celebration of its twentieth anniversary, some members indicated the intention of their governments to bring out a special publication and to issue commemorative postage stamps.

149. The Council strongly appealed to the traditional and possible new donors to fulfil the regular WFP and IEFR targets for the current period and to help taise the resources to the level of US$1 3.50 million as provided by the Resolution approved by the CFA and endorsed by the Council, and included in this report.

Inter—Agency Relations and Consultations on Questions of Common Interest

Recent Developments in the United Nations System of Interest to FAO 5

150. The Council expressed satisfaction at the excellent state of cooperation between FAO and the other organizations of the United Nations system, as was evident from the document prepared by the Secretariat. It noted the wide range of issues involving FAO in inter—agency consultations and complimented the Director—General on his response to these system— wide efforts. The paper before the Council was considered very helpful in enabling governments to know how FAO’s programmes related to those of the rest of the system. This item should thus continue to be a permanent feature of Council and Conference discussions.

151. The Council regretted the lack of progress towards the launching of the Global Negotiations. Concern was expressed at this delay as already stated at the Non—Aligned Summit held in New Delhi last March, The Council reiterated the importance it attached to the Global Negotiations and expressed the hope that divergence of views would soon be reconciled. It was pointed out that a positive outcome of the current session of UNCTAD VI might well provide some additional momentum.

152. In discussing the International Development Strategy, the Council noted FAO’s intention to contribute to the first review and appraisal of the International development Strategy in 1984 as called for in General Assembly resolutions 35156 (1980) and 37/202 (1982), through the work of the Committee of Universal Membership set up by the General Assembly. It approved, in particular, the Director—General’s decision to submit a document on the subject to the FAO Conference in the autumn. The Council expressed satisfaction that, in reporting to the Committee of Universal Membership, FAO would include not only the results achieved in applying the International Development Strategy as the policy framework for the formulation and implementation of its programmes of work, but also the experience in its own sector indicating problems faced and the steps taken to overcome these, thus enabling full implementation of the International Development Strategy. This was fully in line with the statement made by the Chairman of the Group of 17 in New York at the last General Assembly and supported by EEC.

153. The Council noted that FAO and all, other organizations concerned had been consulted by the Director—General for Development and International Economic Cooperation in the preparation of his Comprehensive Policy Review of Operational Activities for Development. This report was to be submitted to the summer session of ECOSOC and to the General Assembly at its Thirty—eighth Session in the autumn of 1983. The Council also noted with appreciation the work under way through the ACC (Administrative Committee on Coordination) machinery, in particular the Consultative Committee on Substantive Questions (Operational Activities) (CCSQ/OPS), on the evolution of operational activities for development in the l980s, and the decision taken by ACC, as contained in Appendix C to document C 83/19, outlining inter alia some measures to improve complementarity and coherence of programmes and policies at the country level.

154. The Council expressed concern at the insufficient level of resources for development and called upon member states to mobilize additional funds for operational activities to be carried out by the UN system.

155. In this respect, the Council stressed the importance of the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) as a source of funding for agricultural development and expressed the hope that every effort would be made to complete the first replenishment of IFAD as soon as possible, and to initiate and conclude discussions on the second replenish-ment in good time.

156. The Council noted with pleasure the Organization’s continued good working relations with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and expressed satisfaction that the Director—General and the Administrator of UNDP had decided to send out a further joint letter to their field representatives with a view to enhancing this cooperation at the field level.

157, FAO was commended for its response to the General Assembly resolutions concerning relations of the UN system with regional intergovernmental organizations such as the Organization of African Unity, the Organization of the Islamic Conference and the League of Arab States, as mentioned in paragraphs 35 to 43 of the aforementioned document. It was also recognized that FAO was giving support to the regional and sub—regional organizations in Latin America and the Caribbean.

Joint Inspection Unit (JIU) Reports:

(a)Fourteenth Report on the Activities of the JIU (July 1981 — June 1982) 6

158. The Council noted this report.

(b) Personnel Policy Options and Career Concept

(JIU/REP/81/ll and JIU/REP/82/3) 7

159. The Council endorsed the views of the Programme and Finance Committees and agreed with the conclusion of ACC that while the recommendations of the JIU were appreciated, the established procedure for study of personnel policies was inter—agency consultations under the aegis of and/or in cooperation with the International Civil Service Commission (ICSC).

(c) Organization and Methods for Official Travel (JIU/REP/82/7) 8

160. The Council noted the contents of the JIU Report and the comments formulated thereon by the Programme Committee and the Finance Committee. It commended the Director—General for the exemplary initiative he had taken and the substantial savings in administrative costs which the FAO arrangements of an in—house travel agency had been generating. The Council expressed great satisfaction at the fact that the arrangements made by FAO were highly praised and recommended by JIU as a model for other UN Agencies to follow.

(d) Communications in the United Nations System (JIU/REP/82/6) 9

161. The Council agreed in general with the ACC comments on this JIU Report, as well as the comments formulated thereon by the Programme Committee and the Finance Committee. The Council agreed in particular with the Director—General’s view that the establishment of yet another special Inter—Agency Committee for the development or monitoring of a UN— system master plan was not necessary. It requested, however, a maximum degree of co— ordination between UN agencies through periodical consultations, particularly in the field of Electronic Data Processing (EDP), in order to ensure compatibility of the various EDP systems and optimal use of budgetary resources through the phased introduction of such systems.

(e) Status of Women in Professional Category and Above (JIU/REP/82/4) 10

162. The Council generally agreed with the comments made by the Programme and Finance Committees. Although noting that the Organization had made good progress since 1976, the Council expressed its concern that much more needed to be done in order to increase the employment of women in the Secretariat, in particular at the higher levels.

163. The Council recognized the serious imbalance of geographical representation among female staff from developed and developing countries, and recommended that among the candidatures presented by Member Governments, they should include more women who were qualified for employment in the Secretariat, and requested the Director—General to improve this situation, inter alia by requesting Member Governments to assist the Secretariat in providing suitable female candidates.

164. While endorsing the Programme Committee’s view that the setting of targets was not suitable for an organization with FAO’s technical disciplines, the Council was of the opinion that a certain degree of “positive discrimination” was required, namely, whenever two equally—qualified candidates, male and female, were available, preference should be given to the woman.

165. The Council endorsed the Programme and Finance Committees’ proposal that a review of the status of women in the Organization every four years would be a suitable timeframe in which to reflect the progress made.

(f) Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) (JIU/REP/82/l) 11

166. The Council agreed with the views of the Programme and Finance Committees on the JIU Re5ort and endorsed the comments of the Director—General on the recommendations of the Report. It stressed the importance of close tripartite cooperation between FAO, ECA and OAU, and recalled the fruitful collaboration that had already been achieved through the Joint ECA/FA0 Agricultural Division and through other joint initiatives such as the preparation of the Regional Food Plan for Africa. While recognizing the increased responsibilities conferred upon ECA by resolutions of the UN General Assembly, the Council reaffirmed FAO’s role as lead agency for rural and agricultural development, and urged for a clearer delineation of the respective roles of FAO and ECA in these sectors. It noted that ECA and the MULPOCs (Multinational Programming and Operational Centres) needed strengthening in several respects before they could effectively carry out their programme and coordinating functions. The Council expressed its satisfaction that, within the budgetary resources available, FAO was giving adequate support to ECA’s programmes through the Joint Division.

Preparations for the Twenty—second Session of the FAO Conference

Arrangements for the Session and Provisional Timetable 12

167. The Council examined the draft Conference document prepared by the Director—General on arrangements for the Twenty—second Session of the Conference, and approved it.

Nomination of the Chairman and Other Officers of the Conference 13

168. The Council noted that consultations had taken place among the Heads of Delegations represented at the Council in order to designate the candidates who would be approached to serve as Chairman of the Conference and Chairmen of Commissions I, II and III.

Deadline for Nominations for Independent Chairman of the Council 14

169. The Council noted that the Conference at its Twenty—second Session would be required to appoint the Independent Chairman of the Council, the term of office of the present incumbent expiring in November 1983.

170. The Council also noted that with regard to nominations for this office, Rule XXIII— l(b) of the General Rules of the Organization laid down that the Council determines the date for such nominations which must be submitted by Member Nations and addressed to the Secretary—General of the Conference. The Council accordingly established the deadline for the receipt of such nominations at 17.00 hours on Friday 2 September 1983. Nominations would be circulated by the Secretary—General to all Member Nations by Friday 9 September 1983.

Preparations for the World Conference on Fisheries Managemeut and Development 15

171. The Council welcomed the opportunity to review the steps taken by the Director— General in preparation for the FAO World Conference on Fisheries Management and Develop-ment. It considered that the Conference would make an important and timely contribution to the practical implementation of the new regime of the oceans in relation to fisheries and would enhance the role of fish in nutrition and in national self—reliance in food production.

172. The Council welcomed the preparations already undertaken, in particular the series of specialized technical meetings that had been organized on major subjects to be discussed at the Conference and the consultations held with governments and international organizations including a first informal meeting with the United Nations and the specialized agencies concerned.

173. The Council recommended that the World Fisheries Conference should not deal with matters already discussed in the UN Conference on the Law of the Sea.

174. The Council endorsed the draft agendas for the two phases of the Conference which had been submitted to it in document CL 83/7, and suggested that the subject of conservation of coastal and inland fishery resources might also be included. It considered that the drafts reflected a• well—balanced and integrated approach to the problems of the management and development of fisheries, including inland fisheries and aquaculture. In its view, the drafts accurately took into account the suggestions made by the 1982 regional conferences regarding the priority issues and desirable outcomes of the World Fisheries Conference.

175. The Council also approved the proposed structure for the 1984 policy phase of the Conference, i.e. plenary sessions which would provide an opportunity for national statements at the Ministerial Level and two commissions to deal with proposals for a Strategy for Fisheries Management and Development and for specific action programmes.

176. With regard to the proposed strategy, the Council agreed that it should comprise guidelines and principles for consideration by governments and international organizations, but emphasized that they should take full account of national sovereignty while promoting the optimal use of fish resources. In particular, the strategy should help to foster the individual and collective self—reliance of developing countries and to consider problems of its funding. The strategy should consider not only marine fisheries but also inland water fisheries and aquaculture.

177. The Council endorsed the proposal that the World Fisheries Conference should seek agreement upon programmes of action in such areas as technical assistance, investment, trade and training. It placed particular emphasis upon the need for an integrated pro-gramme of training in fisheries. It noted that other areas for action might be identified, for example with regard to fish in nutrition and food security. The Council stressed the importance of the participation, in the design and implementation of these programmes, not only by FAO, but by governments, donor agencies and financing institutions.

178. In this connexion, it recommended that whilst frameworks for both the strategy and the action programmes would be presented to the technical phase of the Conference in October 1983, further consultations would be necessary before detailed proposals were submitted to the policy phase of the Conference in June 1984. it was suggested that such consultations might be accomplished either through special working groups or correspondence. The suggestion was also made that the financial aspects of the expected recommendations of the Conference should be given due consideration at both its phases.

179. The Council expressed the hope that the World Fisheries Conference would give due account to the aspirations and needs of developing coastal states in their efforts to develop and conserve the fish resources of their Exclusive Economic Zones for the benefit of their people and to expand their participation in international trade in fish and fish products, especially in the light of the principles embodied in the Convention on the Law of the Sea.

180. The Council emphasized the need for early distribution of working documents to ensure that governments had sufficient time to give them careful consideration.

181. The Council considered that it was important to obtain resources from organizations and governments to finance attendance of representatives from developing countries at the Conference.

1 CL 83/9; CL 83/PY/6; CL 83/PV/7; CL 83/PV/17.

2 CL 83/22; CL 83/PV/8; CL 83/PV/l7.

3 CL 83/6; CL 83/PV/l3; CL 83/PV/l4; CL 83/PV/l8.

4 CL 83/19; CL 83/PV/14; CL 83/PV/l8.

5 C 83/19; CL 83/PV/ll; CL 83/PV/l7.

6 CL 83/16; CL 83/4; CL 83/PV/ll; CL 83/PV/l2; CL 83/PV/17.

7 CL 83/4, paras. 2.181—2.184; CL 83/17; CL 83/PV/ll; CL 83/PV/l2; CL 83/PV/l7.

8 CL 83/18; CL 83/4,paras. 2.192—2.193, and 3.114—3.117; CL 83/PV/il; CL 83/PV/12; CL 83/PV/17.

9 CL 83/20; CL 83/4, paras. 2.189—2.191 and 3.111—3.113; CL 83/PV/ll; CL 83/PV/l2; — CL 83/PV/l7.

10 CL 83/14; CL 83/4; CL 83/PV/11; CL 3/PV/12; CL 83/PV/l7.

11 CL 83/21; CL 83/4 paras. 2.185 and 3.107; CL 83/PV/ll; CL 83/PV/12; CL 83/PV/17.

12 CL 83/l1; CL 83/PV/ll; CL 83/PV/17.

13 CL 83/PV/l7.

14 CL 83/12; CL 83/PV/ll; CL 83/PV/17.

15 CL 83/7; CL 83/PV/l6; CL 83/PV/l8.

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