CHAIRMAN: Honoxirable Delegates, Observers, Ladies and Gentlemen, I wish to welcome you to our Seventy-Fifth Session which is starting this morning.
Before we proceed with our business, I would like to say that this is the most important session that the Council ever had in a biennium because during this session we are going to consider the Summary Programme of Work and Budget prepared by the Director-General in accordance with the wishes of the Council and Conference, and as you will agree with me the whole purpose of the existence of FAO is for the Programme,and the Programme will have to be financed by the Budget and therefore this is a very important session for which lam very glad to see we have a very full house and I am sure that when we come to debate the Programme of Work and Budget there will be a lot of understanding because we have already seen in the Programme and Finance Committees, COAG and so on, the very good response that the Members have given to the Director- General' s proposals.
Before we go on I would also like to welcome Dr. Sen who is again with us here to grace the opening of our Seventy-Fifth Session. I would like to thank him very much for the continuing interest which he has shown in this Organization of which he.can be very well said to be one of the founders.
Now we will go on to the Order of the Day and proceed with our business this morning. The first item we have is Adoption of the Agenda and Time-Table but perhaps before that I should welcome the new Members who are joining us and also those Members who have been re-elected to continue. These are sixteen member countries who are joining the Council at this Session, that is they came in as from the 1st of January 1979. These countries are Australia, Botswana, Egypt, El Salvador, France, Ghana, India, Italy, Kuwait, Madagascar, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Sri Lanka, Sweden and the United Kingdom. Of these 16 Members 8 are joining-the Council after prolonged absence and I wish to welcome those countries who have joined us now.
CHAIRMAN: In connexion with this item, I have been informed by the Secretariat that Item 16.2, Invitations to Non-Member Nations to attend the FAO Session, there is nothing to report on this, and and therefore there is no document. We would like also to insert a new item, 16.2, which is Appointment of Members of the FAO Staff Pension Committee. This item will be for decision and the relevant document is CL 75/19. This item was not included in the original agenda, but due to circumstances explained in the document it has become necessary for the Council to appoint new Members to this Committee. Unless there are any objections it will be considered that the Council approved the item instead of the previous 16.2 to be discussed towards the end of the Session in order to allow for consultations.
There is nothing else to add from the Secretariat and the Chair, and I will therefore put to the Council the Adoption of the Agenda and Time-Table. In the absence of any Member wishing to speak I take it that the Agenda and Time-Table are acceptable and adopted.
M.S. SWAMINATHAN (India): I would like to propose His Excellency Mr. José Leido, Junior, Minister of Natural Resources of the Phillipines for one of the Vice-Chairmen.
CHAIRMAN: I am sure that will be supported but before we go on with this I would like to make some proposals' from the Chair, which,we have done before. In paragraph 1 of the Rules of Procedure of the Council, it says: "The Council shall elect First Vice-Chairman and Second Vice-Chairman at the beginning of the Session." As Members are. aware, this rule was adopted at a time when the Council was considerably smaller in number than at present, in fact the membership at the time was about 18, but today we have grown to 49. In line with this increased membership I would therefore propose that a provision be made for a third Vice-Chairman, or let us put it this way, perhaps we need proposals for the election of three Vice-Chairmen instead of two in future in order better to take into account regional representation and the increased number of membership of the Council.
Now if you remember, at our last Session we suspended this particular rule to make it possible for us to do honour to Mr. Frank Shefrin who had served the Council over many years and we elected him a Vice-Chairman, making three. My proposal is that we should adopt a similar situation and amend the rule itself. I would like before any discussion to ask the Legal Counsel to say a few words on this.
LEGAL COUNSEL: You have very well explained the situation by citing Rule 1, which with your permission I shall read out in toto. It reads as follows: "The Council shall elect a first Vice-Chairman and a second Vice-Chairman at the beginning of each of its sessions, who shall remain in office until the election of a new Vice-Chairman at the next session of the Council." If it is the wish of the Council from now on to have three instead of two Vice-Chairmen the amendment that the Council would have to adopt for this purpose would consist of the insertion of "and a third Vice-Chairman" in the text which I have just read out. Once this amendment is approved by the Council, the Council may immediately proceed with the election of three Vice-Chairmen.
CHAIRMAN: There are some speakers who want the floor and I hope to speak on this proposal from the chair so that we get this settled before ve go on.
F.GEBRASI (Venezuela) : Ante todo permítame, señor Presidente, expresarle el plaoer de nuestra delegación por verlo de nuevo al frente de nuestros trabajos.
Hemos escuchado con atención las rasones y motivos que usted, señor Presidente, nos ha expuesto para proponernos el incremento del número de Vicepresidentes, inolufda la explicación adicional del Asesor Jurfdioo. He pedido la palabra para expresar nuestro apoyo a esta iniciativa suya que se corresponde con el incremento mismo que sugería el número de miembros del Consejo
P.A. MORALES CARSALLO (Cuba): Permítame seftor Presidente en primer lugar, saludarlo por tenerlo nuevamente presidiando nuestras reuniones Es para nosotros un honor verlo aquí. En pocas palabras creo que podemos expresar el sentir de nuestra delegación en el sentido de que estamos plenamente convencidos de que ha llegado el momento de hacer la ampliación que se propone de elevar a tres el número de Vicepresidentes del Consejo de la FAO, tomando en consideración la argumentación ya manifestada aquí por el Asesor Jurídico y teniendo presente que el número actual de miembros del Consejo es bastante elevado. Por estas rasones nuestra delegación desee apoyar decididamente esa ampliación que aquí se propone.
C. BATAULT (France): Je voudrais simplement me joindre á ce /?/ me paraît en effet qu'étant donné l'augmentation des effectifs du Conseil depuis ses débuts, il serait maintenant tout 1 fait normal et logique d'avoir trois vice-présidents. J'appuie donc'entièrement cette proposition. J'aurai d'ailleurs ensuite 1 en faire une autre en ce qui concerne les vice-présidences.
J. À. BAKER (United States of America): I would like to say how pleated I an to see you again chairing our sessions. I note the proposal that you have made, which has been seconded by members of this Council. It seems that there certainly are arguments for increasing the number of Vice-Chairmen. We did so, as you pointed out, at the previous meeting. I certainly see no reason why we should not do so at this meeting should we see fit. While having no serious difficulty with your proposal, Mr. Chairman, I do wish to observe that when we come to changing the rules of the Council it would seem prudent as a matter of practice to give the members of the Council a little more time for reflection than we have been given on this occasion. I think our rules deserve that and we deserve that. I would not wish that observation to interfere with the progress of this proposal on your part, but I would like to make that observation simply as a matter of practice.
CHAIRMAN: Thank you. The points you have made are well taken.
S. MADEMBA SY( Sénégal): Je ne voudrais pas prolonger trop longtemps ce débat, mais je tiens à dire que ma délégation appuie la proposition que vous avez faite pour que le Règlement du Conseil soit amendé de maniere à avoir trois vice-présidents.
G. BULA HOYOS (Colombia): Yo deseo apoyar las observaciones hechas por el colega de los Estados Unidos. Creo que conviene ahora en este período de sesiones suspender el artículo para poder elegir los tres Vicepresidentes y luego que el Consejo pida a su Organo Asesor, el CACJ, que le presente un proyecto de enmienda para adoptarlo en nuestro proximo período de sesiones.
CHAIRMAN: Thank you delegate of Colombia, but we did seek the guidance of the Legal Counsel. If you do not have any objection and since our rules do allow us to go ahead now I suggest that we do so, because the great majority of members did agree; it is agreed really. So if you have no objection we shall go ahead now and proceed with the rest of the agenda.
The consensus is that we go ahead and we elect three Vice-Chairmen now and the rules will be changed accordingly and the legal adviser will do the necessary work. In connection with this item the delegate of India made a proposal. I would like to call him, now that we are coming formally to nomina-, tions, to make his proposal again.
M. S. SWAMINATHAN (India): I would like to propose H.E. José Laido Jr., Minister of Natural Resources of the Philippines for the position of First Vice-Chairman.
CHAIRMAN: A proposal has been made that the Minister of Matural Reeourcee of the Philippines be elected First Vice-Chairman. Are there any objections to thiat?
C. McCLAIN (Liberia): I do support the nomination.
J. G. KHARAS (Pakistan): I would like to support wholeheartedly the proposal made by the delegate of India of the Minister of Natural Resources of the Philippines as the First Vice-Chairman.
CHAIRMAN: Now we have proposals which have been supported by two delegates. May I take it that we elect by aclamation the Minister of Natural Resources of the Philippines as First Vice-Chair-man.
CHAIRMAN: May I now call for nominations for the Second Vice-Chairman?
V. S. BLANCO DELGADO (México): Es un placer para mi delegación el proponer para la segunda Vicepresidencia al Embajador de Arabia Saudita, nuestro amigo el señor A. Y. Bukhari. Un individuo que en realidad ha representado a su país con una gran dignidad en esta FAO. Reúne unas cualidades poco comunes entre los representantes ya que, además de ser uno de sus técnicos mejor preparados, es persona que conoce el manejo de los asuntos políticos de esta Institución. Es un orgullo y un placer para nosotros poderlo presentar a la Vicepresidencia.
CHAIRMAN: We now have a proposal for the delegate of Saudi Arabia, H.E. Dr. Bukhari as the Second Vice-Chairman.
E. HRAÒUI (Liban) - (Interprétation de l'arabe): Je voudrais remercier la délégation du Mexique d'avoir présenté la candidature de l'ambassadeur de l'Arabie Saoudite. c'est un honneur pour le groupe arabe. En appuyant cette candidature, je voudrais dire que le groupe arabe est très fier de voir que l'ambassadeur de l'Arabie Saoudite le représentera en tant que vice-président.
P.A. MORALES CARBALLO (Cuba): Permítame, señor Presidente, sumarme a la propuesta hecha por el distinguido delegado de México en favor del embajador Bukhari, de Arabia Saudita, conocido representante que ha mostrado una gran actividad en nuestros trabajos, que presta extraordinaria atención a los problemas de la FAO y que nosotros estamos seguros de que su eficiencia, ya conocida entre nosotros, se repetirá durante su trabajo en el Consejo. Por eso con mucho placer deseamos reiterar ese apoyo a la candidatura del embajador Bukhari.
J.J. LEIDO Jr. (Philippines): I have the honour to second the nomination of Mexico in favour of H.E. Dr. Bukhari for election as Second Vice-Chairman.
O. BORIN (Italie): Je suis heureux d'appuyer la proposition de notre ami du Liban pour nommer M. Bukhari á la deuxième Vice-Présidence du Conseil. Je le connais depuis longtemps. Nous avons été ensemble membres du Conseil d'adminiëtration du FIDA, et j'ai pu apprécier ses qualités de finesse d'esprit, de préparation et de subtilité. Je suis donc heureux d'appuyer cette proposition.
S. MADEMBA SY (Sénégal): Au nom du groupe africain et au nom de ma délégation, je voudrais appuyer très chaleureusement la candidature de M. Bukhari à la deuxième Vice-Présidence du Conseil. Ce n'est pas parce qu'il siège à côté de moi que je lui donne cet appui, mais nous connaissons tous maintenant M. Bukhari. Nous savons l'intérêt qu'il a toujours pris à nos travaux et sa disponibilité envers l'organisation.
C. BATAULT (France): Je voudrais également appuyer la candidature de M. Bukhari le distingué représentant de l'Arabie Saoudite, comme Vice-Président.
J'ai également une proposition à faire pour l'autre Vice-Présidence. Si vous le voulez, je la ferai aussitôt que nous en aurons fini avec l'élection du deuxième Vice-Président.
MAPELA NGA-MA (Zaïre): Il y a déjà quelques minutes que j'ai demandé la parole, mais je suis petit de taille, ma pancarte est également petite et on ne m'a pas vu. Je voulais simplement, au nom de mon pays, appuyer la candidature du délégué de l'Arabie Saoudite au poste de deuxième Vice-Président.
CHAIRMAN: Thank you for your support.
J.G. KHARAS (Pakistan): On behalf of Pakistan I also would like to lend our wholehearted support to the representative of Saudi Arabia for Second Vice-Chairman.
CHAIRMAN: We now have proposals seconded by several delegates to elect the delegate of Saudi Arabia as Second Vice-Chairman. May I take it that we elect Mr. Bukhari by acclamation.
The next step is the election of the Third Vice-Chairman.
F. GERBASI (Venezuela): Nuestra delegación se felicita por la elección que acabamos de efectuar del primero y segundo Vicepresidentes y también por la decision que tomamos hace pocos minutos de ampliar el número de Vicepresidentes.
Ahora bien, dado el caso de que estos puestos son de gran importancia y relevancia para los trabajos del Consejo, y a pesar de que en dos oportunidades mi querido amigo el embajador Batault anuncio que tendría una propuesta para la tercera Vicepresidencia, quisiera solicitarle muy respetuosamente que consideramos oportuno se hagan las consultas del caso y que se suspenda hasta la tarde la elección del tercer Vicepresidente.
CHAIRMAN: The proposal that is made is rather unusual in the context of Council, but the delegate of Venezuela has made a proposal as to whether we should go ahead now and elect the Third Vice-Chairman or whether we should postpone it until the afternoon.
C. BATAULT (France): Il m'arrive très rarement de ne pas être d'accord avec mon ami l'ambassadeur du Venezuela, mais je trouve que ce serait vraiment compliquer nos débats et sans précédent. Puisque nous avons décidé d'avoir un troisième Vice-Président, puisque l'élection du Vice-Président doit se faire au début du Conseil, nous ne pouvons pas faire autrement qu'élire ce troisième Vice-Président.
J'ai donc une proposition à faire à propos d'une candidature. J'espère qu'elle sera acceptée,
G.S. MAGOMBE (Tanzania): As a matter of fact, before we postpone or elect, could we hear the proposal from France? It is only after that that we can decide whether to postpone it or not.
FASLA ABDELMARJID (Algérie): Je dois tout d'abord vous dire combien ma délégation est heureuse de vous voir de nouveau à la Présidence.
Il est certain que si le problème de la troisième Vice-Présidence avait été réglé d'une manière
définitive lors du dernier Conseil, on aurait pu trancher. Mais cette troisième Vice-Présidence a
été proposée de manière formelle seulement aujourd'hui. Nous n'avons pas adopté l'amendement du
règlement intérieur concernant cette troisième Vice-Présidence.
Il est tout à fait légitime qu'on laisse le soin aux délégations qui ont des propositions à faire de procéder à des consultations, sinon nous allons nous trouver devant deux ou trois candidatures. Il est préférable de régler cette question à l'amiable entre les groupes intéressés. C'est la voie de la sagesse. Autrement, il y aura une proposition de la France, il y aura peut-être une proposition du Venezuela, comment allons-nous trancher? Il vaut mieux laisser le soin aux régions intéressées de se consulter. C'est une pratique qui existe au niveau du système des Nations Unies. On n'est pas obligé d'élire dès la première séance tous les Vice-Présidents. Je pense que cet après-midi nous pourrions avoir un résultat, sinon demain matin.
C. BATAULT (France): Je suis très heureux de prendre la parole mais je voudrais savoir pourquoi je prends la parole.
Est-ce que nous acceptons la proposition que vient de faire avec talent le délégué de l'Algérie qui évidemment propose une argumentation logique, ou devons-nous simplement suivre la procédure habituelle qui consisterait à procéder dès maintenant à l'élection du troisième Vice-Président?
Si vous pensez qu'il y a des difficultés pour l'élection de ce troisième Vice-Président, ce a quoi je ne m'attendais pas du tout, et des candidatures imprévues, peut-être aurions-nous avantage à attendre un peu. Je ne peux qu'à m'en remettre à votre sagesse, Monsieur le Président. Si vous le souhaitez, je ferai ma proposition de candidature d'une personnalité qui est appréciée par tous. Si au contraire vous souhaitez que l'on remette cette question à plus tard, comme le souhaite le délégué de l'Algérie, je serai prêt à accepter votre décision.
G. BULA HOYOS (Colombia): La delegación de Colombia apoya la declaración de Venezuela y Argelia.
CHAIRMAN: If there are no contrary opinions or objections, then we will defer the election of the Third Vice-Chairman to the afternoon, in which case, then, first thing in the afternoon we shall elect the Third Vice-Chairman.
A.Y. BUKHARI (Saudi Arabia) (Interpretation from Arabic): Before going to Item 3, I wanted to first thank the Members of the Council who have proposed my candidature as second Vice-Chairman of the Council and to thank those who have supported this candidature. I really wanted to thank them wholeheartedly, together with everyone else present in this room this morning. I want to thank everybody for this sincere trust that has been placed in me in electing me as second Vice-Chairman of the Council. I would also like to say that this honour that has been put on me is something that goes beyond myself; this is an honour that is being given to Saudi Arabia that I have the honour to represent in this Organization.
In the past, we have worked together in various fields in different Committees in this Organization that is so dear to us. I have also appreciated your fairness and your wisdom, and I am sure that our cooperation will be strengthened to the benefit of public well-being.
Mr. Chairman, through you I will address myself to all the colleagues present in this room this morning, and I would like to really urge them to always be united so as to approve all the programmes and projects that will be presented to the Director-General of this Organization. We all know how well he reflects upon matters and how far-sighted he is. We should really be with him in supporting him in the adoption of the programmes and projects he carries out for the benefit of other countries. We have to be united for the benefit of countries that want to have a better development.
I would also like to thank all the Members of the Council who have put this trust in me. I can promise you that I will spare no efforts so as to deserve this trust that has been put in me.
J.J. LEIDO, Jr. (Philippines): Mr. Chairman, distinguished delegates, allow me to express my profound gratitude for this distinct honour that this august body has conferred upon this representation.
The Agenda for the Session is fraught with importance. We will be discussing the programmes for the next two years and what will be needed to implement these programmes, the future of new initiatives and the continuation of current thrusts.
Please accept my most humble assurance that I will do my best to serve the purposes of this Council. Thank you very much.
CHAIRMAN: We have under this item application for Membership in the Organization of the Independent State of Western Samoa.
The Government of the Independent State of Western Samoa has applied for membership in the Organization. All Member Nations have been informed of this application, which will be submitted for decision to the Conference in November. In the meantime, in accordance with paragraphs (b) 1, (b) 2, and (b) 3 of the Statement of Principles relating to the granting of Observer Status to nations and with Rule 25.11 of the General Rules of the Organization, the Council may wish to authorize the Director-General to invite representatives of Samoa to attend in an Observer capacity meetings of the Council as well as the technical and regional meetings and other meetings of interest to it.
I wish to ask the Council whether, in the light of this text, the Council would agree that representa
tives of Samoa be invited to such meetings. Now, if there are no comments, perhaps I would take it
that the Members agree, but now the point is put to you that the Director-General should invite the
Government of Western Samoa as Observer to various meetings, including this one.
It is taken that the Members agree that Western Samoa be invited as Observer.
It was so decided.
II en est ainsi décidé.
Así se acuerda.
CHAIRMAN: We go on to the third item, which is the Statement by the Director-General, and I now give the floor to Dr. Edouard Saouma.
DIRECTOR-GENERAL: The main purpose of this session is to prepare the Twentieth Session of the Conference in November next.
Before beginning my remarks, however, the sad duty falls to me of noting the tragic death of someone who was a distinguished, accomplished and greatly liked participant in this Council. I refer to the late Jawed Salim Khan, who died suddenly on the evening of 27 April.
He was here representing the Government of Pakistan at the session of the Programme Committee, to which he was appointed in 1977. Previous to that he was Alternated Permanent Representative of the Government of Pakistan, and thus well-known to most of us for his ideals, his outstanding capabilities, his constructive approach, and his modest and friendly personality.
His death is a loss not only to his family and to his Government but also to the Organization. We shall miss him.
I would kindly ask you, Mr. Chairman, to request the Council to observe a minute of silence as a tribute to the memory of Jawed Salim Khan.
CHAIRMAN: Thank you very much, Mr. Director-General. This tragedy which took place during the last meeting of the Programme and Finance Committee shocked everybody. Everyone knows Mr. Khan has served in his country with distinction and his sudden death was a great loss to his country and to this Organization. May I ask everyone in this room to observe one minute's silence in honour of Mr. Khan.
The Council observed one minute of silence in memory of Mr. Jawed Salim Khan.
Le Conseil observe une minute de silence à la mémoire de M. Jawed Salim Khan.
El Consejo observa un minuto de silencio en memoria del Sr. Jawed Salim Khan.
CHAIRMAN: I will now ask the Director-General to continue.
DIRECTOR-GENERAL: At your session last November, we carried out a full survey of the overáll situation one year after the Nineteenth Session of the Conference.
Today I want to focus on a few issues of major importance for the next Conference and the next biennium.
First, however, I should mention that the Organization has recently been honoured by the visits of two Heads of State, the President of the Republic of Panama, and the King of the Belgians who was accompanied by his gracious Queen. Their knowledge of and interest in the work of the Organization was most gratifying.
WCAARD (World Conference on Agrarian Reform and Rural Development)
In this connexion, I am glad to inform you that several Heads of State are likely to be attending and addressing the World Conference on Agrarian Reform and Rural Development in July. I would mention the Presidents of the Republics of Italy, Senegal, Tanzania, Bangladesh and Costa Rica.
This attendance at the very highest levels not only symbolizes the importance of the World Conference. It will give it a significant policy impetus. And it will be an unprecedented recognition of this Organisation of which we can all be proud.
For, after all, the Conference is not an end in itself.
The Conference must concentrate on all that is conducive to bringing out the political will, self-reliance, and drive for equity within the developing countries themselves and the assistance which the international community and the UN system can and should give.
That is why it is important that the draft Programme of Action, which is now being revised in the light of comments by Member Governments, should be the main focus of the Conference.
The tasks of analysing and following up the proceedings of the Conference will constitute a particular challenge for the organizations of the UN family, especially FAO. The challenge will place a premium on achieving a blend of imagination, boldness, and practicability.
I guarantee that these qualities will be forthcoming from FAO, and this will be accomplished within the narrow margins of the modest total for Programme of Work and Budget for which I am asking for 1980-81. I will come back to this issue later.
World Food Security
There are other important Conference issues arising out of current action. Of primary importance will be World Food Security.
The Council has before it the Report of the Committee on World Food Security which met in April. As you will have noted, this contains a Five-Point Plan which I put forward to the Committee following the failure of the long drawn-out negotiations for an International Grains Arrangement and a new Food Aid Convention.
While a resumption of the United Nations Negotiating Conference as a new International Grains Arrangement is still to be hoped for, we must face the probability - recognized by Secretary Bergland of the United States Department of Agriculture and others - that no major developments in that direction can be expected in the next year or two.
This is implicit in the fact that the 1971 Wheat Agreement, which contains no provisions for stock building or price stability, has been extended in its present form for two years from 1 July 1979. The 1971 Food Aid Convention has also been further extended for two years, but with a recommendation that effect be given to the increased commitments which governments had been ready to envisage at the Negotiating Conference.
The failure of the Geneva negotiations represents a major blow to efforts to strengthen world food security. And it leaves a dangerous gap at a time when the stocks of developing countries will probably be about only 10 per cent of their annual consumption. In fact, imports of cereal by developing countries have jumped from 60 to 80 million tons since 1974, and I forecast they will have reached 100 million tons by 1985. We must not forget either that the world population increases by 72 million a year.
In these circumstances, I proposed to the Committee on World Food Security a Plan of Action which is focused on some of the most immediate food security problems, particularly of the low-income food deficit countries.
It has been unanimously adopted by the Committee which recommended it to you with a resolution for your approval.
The Plan consists of the following five basic points:
First, adoption of foodgrain stock policies by all governments which have subscribed to the International Undertaking on World Food Security;
Second, agreement on criteria for management and release of national stocks held in pursuance of the Undertaking;
Third, special measures to assist low income food deficit countries to meet current import requirements and emergency needs;
Fourth, special arrangements for Food Security Assistance to developing countries; and Fifth, promotion of collective self-reliance of developing countries in the vital sector of food security.
You also have before you the Report of the Committee on Food Aid Policies and Programmes.
The promotion of world food security is a major objective under the General Regulations of the World Food Programme. It is to be carried out by the Programme "in accordance with the recommendations made to it by the United Nations and the FAO".
Both parent organizations have now made specific recommendations to the World Food Programme on this subject in the last two months, the United Nations through the Committee-of-the-Whole established under General Assembly resolution 32/174, and FAO through the Committee on World Food Security.
The Committee on Food Aid has decided to review at its next session in October the role of food aid in strengthening the food security of developing countries.
I hope that Council will agree that positive steps should be taken toward an expanded role for the World Food Programme in this area. It is to be noted that the International Food Agreement which has been under discussion for 62 weeks in Geneva did not provide for a programme of financial and technical assistance for helping the developing countries to set up food security stocks.
Another important issue which both the United Nations Committee-of-the-Whole and the Committee on World Food Security have raised is the need to re-evaluate the annual food aid target of at least 10 million tons of cereals, taking into account the Secretariat estimate that food aid needs would be in the order of 15-16 million tons by 1985. The Committee will also consider this highly important policy issue at its next session.
The need for food aid is not urgent in emergency situations. Last year we experienced a large number of natural disasters. Requests for emergency assistance out-stripped the resources available to the World Food Programme.
The Programme nevertheless carried out 57 emergency operations - 50 percent more than in 1977. The International Emergency Food Reserve was exhausted in 1978 and an increase of US$10 million in the allocation of World Food Programme resources for emergencies proved necessary.
It is, of course, not possible to forecast precisely the emergency assistance that might be required in 1979, but the FAO Food Information System is already giving an early warning of unfavourable crop conditions in 24 developing countries.
This is even more than the number of countries reported to have unfavourable crop conditions a year ago and underlines the significance of the Executive Director's views on the level of the resources available for emergency purposes.
At the forecast level, world wheat and coarse grain production would not be sufficient to meet consumption requirements in 1978/80, and the stocks would have to be drawn upon to meet the demand.
Particularly important is the question of contributions to the International Emergency Food Reserve. This Reserve has now been established on a revolving basis. The United Nations Committee of the Whole and the Committee on World Food Security have stressed the need to ensure that the agreed target of 500 000 tons a year should be obtained in 1979. In fact, I fully agree with the Executive Director of the World Food Council who is recommending that this emergency reserve should grow up to 750 000 tons in the coming year.
The need for generous pledges cannot be overstressed, as a failure to meet even the most vital emergency needs would render the whole concept of world food security meaningless.
In speaking of emergency situations, I cannot fail to renew the appeal I made at the meeting of the Committee on Food Aid to save thousands of people in South East Asia suffering from hunger and starvation. I am referring to the food situation in Kampuchea, the "boat people" from Vietnam, and nationals of and displaced persons from Lao as well as Kampuchea. In mentioning these countries, I am fully aware of the political reactions which may arise. I am fully aware of the legal, logistical and security problems involved. But we are faced with a tragic human situation which we cannot ignore. We must put aside all but our sympathy and our humanitarian response. I therefore appeal to all potential donors and relief agencies for a major emergency effort, bilaterally and/or multilaterally, to help these people afflicted by suffering and impending tragedy.
Turning back to the World Food Programme in 1979 and 1980, it is a matter of great concern that the pledges announced for this period have so far reached only about 74 percent of the target of 950 million dollars.
I sincerely hope that new pledges by both traditional donors and new donors will soon make up this shortfall
So far as the biennium 1981-82 is concerned, I hope that the minimum - I repeat minimum - figure of 1 000 million dollars for 1981-82 which amounts to only a very slight increase, not even a real increase, will now be endorsed by you and the Economic and Social Council on the basis recommended by the CFA. Even more importantly, I hope that the contributions to meet the target will in fact be forthcoming,
Commission on Fertilizers
I have given particular attention to the questions of world food security and food aid, but there are, of course, also other important Committee Reports on your Agenda.
At this point, I will take the opportunity of referring to the report of the Commission on Fertilizers.
The question of fertilizers, and indeed of other inputs, has recently tended to recede into the background.
I am sure, therefore, that you will give full attention to the Report, which deals with the recommendations of the Consultative Working Group and reviews some important issues.
At this moment, I would mention only two points. The first is that the Commission urged donor countries to contribute fertilizers liberally to enable us to reactivate our International Fertilizer Supply Scheme primarily in favour of small farmers in MSA countries. The second is that the producers have now committed themselves to provide nearly 1/2 million tons of fertilizer materials for the implementation of the so-called Option System. This is broadly equivalent to $100 million.
I am very glad that the industry has responded in this way and will now be taking the necessary steps to put the Option System in place. So far, however, there has not been any significant response to the appeal to reactivate the International Fertilizer Supply Scheme. I hope that this will be forthcoming, since it is crucial to success in achieving necessary food production targets.
Before going on to the Committee on Agriculture and certain connected matters, I would like to refer briefly to another item under Section III of your Agenda, namely Iten 9 on Inter-Agency Relations.
In early April I attended the meeting in Geneva of the Administrative Committee on Coordination. This was an important meeting because inter alia it dealt with some issues of crucial importance to the effective working of organizations in the UN system in the field.
The ACC had before it the results of a number of coordination meetings held in Geneva and New York during the past few months.
At the ACC, we achieved agreement on the letter of appointment of "the single official" at the country level envisaged in General Assembly Resolution No 32/197. This appointment constitutes a new element in the UN system with which Governments and Agencies will have to deal.
The single official will be called the "Resident Coordinator of the UN System's operational activities for development". His responsibilities are set out in his Letter of Appointment by quoting the relevant portion of paragraph 34 of the Restructuring Resolution of the United Nations "on behalf of the United Nations system, overall responsibility for, and coordination of operational activities for development carried out at the country level should be entrusted to a single official to be designated,taking into account the sectors of particular interest to the countries of assignment, in consultation with and with the consent of the government concerned, who should exercise team leadership and be responsible for evolving, at the country level, a multidisciplinary dimension in sectoral development assistance programmes. These tasks should be carried out in conformity with the priorities established by the competent national authorities and with the assistance, as necessary, of joint interagency advisory groups". It is also explicitly recognized that these arrangements "do not affect relations between your Government and individual Organizations of the UN system or the direct lines of authority and communication between the representatives of these Organizations at the country level and their own Executive Heads".
Since the Resident Coordinator will normally, though not necessarily, be the UNDP Resident Representative, and no one has yet explained what a "multidisciplinary dimension" is, it is small wonder that we are now experiencing some further difficulty in agreeing to detailed terms of reference of this singular official.
On my request, we are going to discuss this matter further at the end of the month in Geneva under the ACC auspices. I shall not fail to report to you at your October session.
In this connexion, I am aware that in certain quarters it has been suggested that FAO is the only Organization which is against coordination. I should like to assure you that this is not true.
We are perhaps the only Organization which speaks out frankly what many feel about tendencies towards centralization under the guise of coordination.
We are also against coordination for its own sake carried out by full-time coordinators, at the expense of practical action by people who know their subjects and have years of experience working in hard conditions in the fields, in the forests, and on the seas.
Furthermore, with the very large size of our field programme, in cooperation with the World Bank, other investment institutions, and many souroes of extra-budgetary funds, we have an interest in the matter which is far greater than that of anyone else.
In fact, by the very virtue of the size and depth of our activities, we already have more than enough coordination. We could hardly be more closely involved on a practical day-to day basis with the World Bank, the UNDP, multi-bi donors, and above all with the recipient Governments.
It is with the latter, the Governments themselves, that rests the primary and the only real responsibility for coordination. And, through our growing network of FAO Representatives, we have the closest possible relationships with Governments and the UNDP Resident Representatives on the ground.
It is right and proper, therefore, that we should be openly concerned about possible damage to our vital field action by excessive or impractical coordination detrimental to the interests of the developing countries themselves.
United Nations Committee of the Whole
Of a much more promising nature are other aspects of our relations with the UN and other Agencies and with other Organizations.
The main item at the meeting of the Committee of the Whole in New York during March, was Food and Agriculture.
The Committee adopted "Agreed Conclusions" which are extensive in their scope and importance. These were circulated to the Committee on World Pood Security but the content covers both general questions and a number of specific matters going beyond that particular subject.
The Committee "considers that a rapid increase in food and agricultural production in developing countries is an essential element for their overall development". It agreed that the developing countries should take urgent measures to accelerate the development of their food and agricultural sectors; international development institutes and developed countries should increase substantially their assistance for agricultural development; IFAD should be replenished on a continuing basis; and there should be continued support of donor countries and organizations "through financial and technical assistance to specific programmes and projects for agricultural and food cooperation among developing countries at sub-regional, regional and inter-regional levels". I was just quoting some of these recommendations.
In addition to substantial sections about food security, food aid, agricultural trade, and agro-related industries, the Committee made specific proposals about increased assistance for the supply of fertilizers to MSA countries, for the International Fertilizer Supply Scheme, for assistance to fertilizer and pesticide production, for contributions to FAO's Special Action Programme for the Prevention of Food Losses, and FAO'S Seed Improvement and Development Scheme, and FAO's EEZ programme.
The Committee of the Whole also urged active participation of all Governments in the World Conference on Agrarian Reform and Rural Development, and further action and assistance to countries and in support of the ACC Sub-Committee for and FAO's programmes in Nutrition.
I have drawn your attention to these Agreed Conclusions because the Committee of the Whole is, as it were, the senior committee in the whole UN system responsible for progress on the North-South Dialogue.
These extensive conclusions are of great significance to us. Among other things, they show how relevant and important are FAO's programmes and activities to the formulation of the new International Development Strategy and the achievement of the New International Economio Order. I have no doubt that food and energy are the most important issues which are confronting humanity today. Secretary-General waldheim, at UNCTAD 5, has also confirmed this position.
Council of Europe
It is also gratifying for me to be able to inform you that another external body, the Parliamentary Assembly of the 21 countries of the Council of Europe - which I had the pleasure of addressing in May - unanimously adopted a resolution referring to the Organisation.
This resolution, after recognizing the salient points of the world food situation, specifically welcomes the projects implemented by FAO, especially the setting up of the Food Security Assistance Scheme and the Action Programme for the Prevention of Food Losses; approves FAO's methods of action which - it recognizes - are increasingly orientated towards practical field work parti cularly through the implementation of a Technioal Cooperation Programme which enables it to help countries in difficulty with its own resources; and invites the governments of member states of the
Council of Europe inter alia to implement my Action Plan for World Pood Security, to support the launching by the World Conference on Agrarian Reform and Rural Development of an Action Programme at world level, and to back the Plan I shall submit to our Conference in November on the Exclusive Economic Zone3 of Fisheries.
Committee on Agriculture. Many of the subjects just mentioned were also discussed by the Committee on Agriculture at its session in April.
Fortunately, the committee avoided getting enmeshed in discussions of format of documents and was able to have a discussion in depth of the subjects on its Agenda.
This was perhaps the most fruitful session so far, both for the Member Governments and for the Secretariat, of the Committee. It will help us greatly in carrying forward our programmes in the
next bienniurn and beyond.
I am particularly gratified by the reception given by the Committee to the document we submitted on Nutrition. I think it may be said that with the impetus given by Governments, we have completely overhauled our approach on Nutrition.
The result is that there is now a strong consensus between developed and developing countries in support of the proposed policies and programmes in this vital field.
proposed budget for Nutrition for the next biennium includes an increase at a preferential rate compared with the overall increase. But the total resources available will still be relatively modest and they need to be considerably augmented by extrabudgetary funds.
I believe that some Governments have the capacity as well as the desire to provide these. I hope they will in fact do so in the near future, in support of the high priority programmes and activities identified in the COAG document as well as in the Summary Programme of Work and Budget.
Another point which I noted with much satisfaction was that the Committee, as well as the Programme and Finance Committees, gave strong support to the other strategies and priorities put forward in the Summary Programme of Work and Budget and in the document on the "Medium and Long-Term Outlook for Food and Agricultural Development".
I think I am entitled to say that there has scarcely been a previous time in FAO's history when there has been as full a consensus as there is now between Member Nations on the relevance of FAO's strategies, priorities and action to the needs of the world food situation, on the ways and means employed by the Organization, and on its effectiveness.
You will have noted the reference to Exclusive Economic Zones of Fisheries (EEZ) in the UN Committee of the Whole's Agreed Conclusions and in the resolution of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe. I intend in fact to submit a document to the Conference on our future action on EEZ.
This is in response to the desires of the Conference. But it also represents my own conviction that FAO is the organization par excellence, and perhaps the only organization which can be of equal service to all Member Governments, in resolving the extremely complex, delicate problems arising from this extremely important development in the changing régime of the oceans.
Vital to successful and harmonious national and international action in this field is the role which FAO should and will play in providing a comprehensive approach, close meshing of national and international interests, and attraction and coordination of resources.
In this connexion, I am glad to inform you that the generous pledge of US $3.6 million by the Government of Norway for use on EEZ programmes is already being put to work. Seven projeots have already been approved and several more are under active consideration.
The European Economic Community has also shown considerable interest and I hope that they will be ready to provide considerable funds.
Furthermore, I would like to pay tribute to the Member Governments and the Administrator of the UNDP for the very concrete interest which they have shown in this programme. As a result, I am hoping that the Governing Council of UNDP will shortly agree to grant substantial additional funds for EEZ under their provision for interregional activities.
This would be additional to the funds UNDP are currently mobilising for the control of desert loousts, to which I shall refer in a moment.
I will also be submitting to the Conference a document on the mext phase of our action on Trypanosorniasis
The first phase was a very modest but not an easy one. We have however made sufficient progress to be able to contemplate the next phase of the attack on this daunting problem affecting the wide central swathe of Africa.
I am putting forward what I think is a concrete, feasible and practical approach, which once again calls for cooperation between Member Nations, including a particular emphasis on Economic Cooperation between Developing Countries, ECDC, and Technical Cooperation between Developing Countries, TCDC.
Special Action Programmes. In this short address, I do not have time to discuss all the other Special Action Programmes as fully as they deserve.
They merit full attention because they constitute a unique combination of important elements for multilat eral development•
They combine international priorities explicitly identified and supported by the highest international authorities, such as the UN Committee of the Whole, with individual recipient and donor interests.
They combine FAO's conceptual, managerial and coordinating roles with the inputs and preferences of recipient and donor Governments.
They combine a very modest input of regular budget resources with very much greater amounts of funds provided voluntarily by donors.
I will have more to say on this question of the role of the Regular Programme resources when I come to the Summary Programme of Work and Budget.
Special Action Programmes have already proved their worth in the Sahelian Zone, the Desert Locust Control, the International Fertilizer Supply Scheme, the Food Security Assistance Scheme, the programme for the control of the African Swine Fever, and the Action Programme for the Prevention of Pood Losses.
I would like to add also the Dairy Development Scheme and Training Programme for which I have just been informed that the Government of Denmark will contribute up US $12,5 million during the period 1980-1984. I am happy to convey this information to Members of the Council.
The merit and success of these Schemes is fully attested by all concerned. Nevertheless, they are lacking in resources. Renewal and increase in voluntary contributions are needed for them during the next biennium.
In fact, in the case of Desert Locust Control, the need is urgent. During 1978, I was able to mobilize US $6 million from the TCP, the Working Capital Fund, and international donor contributions made through FAO.
The threat continues, however, during 1979. I have been making strenuous efforts to mobilize further funds, amounting to approximately a further US $6 million.
So far, I have succeeded in obtaining generous contributions from the OPEC Special Fund, the Governments of Saudi Arabia, Belgium, Denmark, the Netherlands and Iraq, in addition to US $345 000 from the UNDP.
As I have already said, I am most grateful to the Administrator, Mr Bradford Morse, and his senior colleagues, for the close and active interest they have personally taken in these efforts, the UNDP contributions already made for 1979, and the requests they are now putting to the Governing Council of the UNDP to provide a much more substantial amount, that is more than US $2 million, for the restructuring of the Desert Locust Control Scheme and, we hope, eventually for a new linked system of national, regional and international efforts for regional plant protection services in Africa.
I trust that in the continuing contacts we shall be having with the Governments concerned, UNDP, other organizations, and donor Governments, we shall be able to mobilize the further funds required over the next few years.
I have stressed the Special Action Programmes not only because of their importance in themselves, but also because of the significant role which the Regular Programme of FAO plays as a catalyst in mobilizing funds for development.
This is even more true of our role in promoting investment through our cooperative arrangements with the World Bank and other financing institutions.
You will find in the Report of the Programme Committee a very full analysis of our investment activities.
The facts speak for themselves. You will note how with a comparatively very small investment of staff and resources FAO has played a vital role in promoting the provision of very large sums to developing countries for food and agricultural development, including much greater emphasis on the small farmers and rural development.
The effort has been building up since 1974f hut I am particularly gratified that of the total amount of US S13 billion of projects formulated by the Investment Centre of FAO and approved by financing institutions during the past 14 years, nearly half was approved in the last two years.
I consider that this is more than ample evidence that the emphasis which was given to investment in the Review of Programmes which you approved in July 1976 has not been just an oral contribution towards the achievement of the New International Economic Order and the new International Development Strategy. This investment achievement in only the last two years has been a very concrete and solid contribution to these objectives.
The Programme Committee has made some useful suggestions for your consideration on the continued operation of our investment activities, with which I generally agree.
I come now, Mr Chairman, to the Summary Programme of Work and Budget for 1980-1981.
I do not propose in this opening speech to go deeply into the considerations behind my detailed proposals. This will be done when Item 11 is introduced. There are, however, certain points I would like to stress from the outset.
As I have already indioated, I do not think there has been a time when there has been a greater degree of consensus than now exists on FAO 's main roles; how these roles are to be applied and translated into strategies and priorities; on the strategies and priorities now in faot being followed; and on the ways and means employed to follow them
The problem we are facing is thus not the choice of priorities but of adequacy of resources.
I must confess in faot that I feel somewhat apologetio about the total budget which I have proposed. It is lower than desired or expeoted by a large number of member countries* It is lower than the merits of the priorities and our capacity for effioient aotion there on would justify It is lower than the ourrent budget for Uneeoo, which totals US $303 million, ineluding a 6.5% real programme increase. It is very much lower than the WHO's biennal budget of UB S427 million for 1980-1981.
The supplementaries recently approved for the Uni ted Mations, at the end of one year only, alone constitute nearly half of the whole of FAO's ourrent budget, and the supplementari es were mostly for meetings, documentation, studies and staff for coordination.
I make these comparisons not in order in any way to oritioise other Agenoies or to envy them, but simply to illustrate how modest my proposals are. Why are they so modest? There are many reasons.
I will attempt to give a few.
We start from a low base despite the priority which everyone agrees should be given to food and agricultural development.
We are consistent and determined in the application of the new strategies and policies approved in 1976.
We are economical. We do not believe in spending money in order to inorease the number of posts and studies at Headquarters.
We believe in maximum impact at minimum cost, principally for action in answer to concrete, urgent needs at the field level.
We have been consistent in our policy of decentralization. We have insisted on the complementarity of action by Headquarters, Regional offices and at the country level.
We have not confused the organizational location of the budget allocations with the place of impaot of the expenditure. The objective of all allocations is the same - complementarity of action to ensure impact at the country level.
There is no antithesis between Headquarters, the Regional and the country levels. They are not to be compared with or pitted against each other. We are one army against hunger.
We have cut our low priorities to make room for new ones, particularly those which will mobilize more investment, more extra-budgetary resources.
I mentioned earlier our Special Action Programmes. Let me take as an example Desert Locust Control. At the beginning of 1978-1979f you approved the addition of some US $450 000 to the Regular Programme in order to take over the desert locust posts formerly financed by the UNDP. Extra-budgetary funds obtained in 1978 from various sources for desert locust control totalled US $4,5 million. We are on the way, I hope to a target of US $6 million in 1979. If we attain that target, the investment of US $450 000 at the beginning of the biennium will have played a vital role in mobilizing more than 23 times that amount.
Let me mention the Action Programme for the Prevention of Food Losses. Por the current biennium, you approved additional resources under the Regular Programme, mainly for the cost of a small unit to mount and coordinate this Action Programme. To date, the extra-budgetary funds employed stand at nearly US $15 million. Approved projects have reached US $7 million, that is 38 times the additional Regular Programme resources.
If we take Investment, the total Regular Programme budget increased from US $1,8 million in 1974 to US $5.4 million in 1978, that is three-fold. The number of investment projects prepared increased five-fold. But their value increased from US $438 million to US $2 129 million, that is 400 times the seed-money provided by the Regular Programme.
In considering the programme increase, I have also frankly taken seriously into account the views expressed by some Governments at the last Conference and the world economic situation, which has not improved since then.
As a result of this, I have reduced the net increase as far as possible. It will be observed that despite all the factors militating in favour of a larger increase, the percentage increase I have requested is 20% lower than that for 1978-1979.
At this point, I should simply like to sum up my approach.
I have been concerned with substance, not with theories. We are professional, experienced and practical.
Our action between Headquarters, Regional Offices and Country Offices is coherent and complementary.
We are deeply involved daily in urgent, up-to-date relevant action, especially in the field.
We pay attention to detail, but we can also have vision and think of the future. We have proved it by proposing to you the five point plan for food security in our proposal on EEZ. We do not hesitate to come forward with initiatives when timely and practical.
Thus, we are looking ahead to the follow-up of the World Conference on Agrarian Reform and the new International Development Strategy.
If anybody is making a really major, central contribution in policy and practical terms to achievement of the goals of the New International Economic Order, it is FAO.
That is why I think that what I am proposing is modest, but deserving of support, and why I hope and expect to get consensus if not unanimity on it.
There are, of course, a number of other items on your Agenda, not the least of which is that dealing with preparations for the Twentieth Session of the Conference. It will also be noted that you have before you an application for membership by the Independent State of Western Samoa, which you have already dealt with.
In conclusion, Mr Chairman, I should like to say that the situation facing this Council and the Conference is as grave as any that has faced you in the past. The facts placed before you under the items on your Agenda dealing with the World Food Situation and World Pood Security and Pood Aid Polioies delineate this.
The number of severely under-nourished people in the developing world will soon approach the half-billion mark. I would also like to quote the figures put by my colleague President Macnaraara, according to which there are still one billion people living in poverty and their annual income has increased by only $2 per year in real terms between 1965 and 1975. Gross average income was $100 in 1965, in 1975 it is $150. $2 a year for one billion people! Virtually all other indicators of the world food situation are discouraging. Millions of people find themselves caught in a poverty trap, not of their own making and out of their control. Their poverty is so extreme they have no choice but to be victims.
Yet we have it in our power and our capacity to decide on and apply the necessary policies to improve the world food situation, to rescue millions from near-starvation and gross under-nourishment.
In the not-so-distant past, considerable doubt was placed by many on the oapacity of the UN System to attack such problems.
I believe that today there is virtually no-one known to and respected by this Council who would maintain that FAO lacks the correct policies, strategies, priorities and capabilities to attack the world food problem.
In this connection, I take comfort from what Mr. Brzezinski, the National Security Adviser to President Carter, said recently in New York about the aims of the United States. He said it was seeking "a world community built not on the domination of a single sector, a single culture or a single ideology, but a community which draws on global diversity as the basis for strength in a pluralistic and increasingly just global order".
In another remarkable speech made by the President of Tanzania in Arusha in February, President Nyerere made the point that the developing countries should not consider that the only choice for them is between dialogue and confrontation with the rich; that the fact that the kind of dialogue which had been conducted so far had as yet brought no fundamental changes in the world economic order was not to say that the dialogue had been useless. He went on to say that there were now groups of people in the industrialized world which had realized that the present inequity could not be allowed to continue and that planned change was necessary in their own interests as well as those of the developing countries.
It is in the spirit of such statements, Mr. Chairman, that we must go on with our work and strive to achieve a successful Council and Conference.
CHAIRMAN: Thank you very much, Mr. Direotor-General, for this very comprehensive statement, not only on the activities of the Organization s inoe our last session but also on all the major items of interest not only on our agenda but also in the world of food and agriculture, nutrition, etc. today. This statement is a keynote statement, which is the normal procedure. It covers, as I said, all the major items on our agenda as well as in the world picture. Normally, our discussione of various items follow on from the statement of the Director-General, and the officials of FAO or the Director-General himself will elaborate on such points as are of interest to Council members. It is not usual to have a direct debate immediately after the statement of the Director-General, but I see a lot of people have their flags up. Perhaps they want to debate. Perhaps they want to say something. But I do appeal to members not to start unilateral debates on the major points made by the Director-General, because this will throw our discussions off balance and we shall just start to go round in circles. Therefore, while I give the floor to those members who want to make a few remarks I do appeal to you to speak in general terms rather, than to go into details which will then bring imbalance into our debates later on. I hope that your interventions will be completed before the end of our allotted time.
H. MENDS (Ghana): I must first of all thank you for the vigour with which you have taokled our work. I wish also to congratulate the Vice-Chairmen on their election. I trust they will be equally zealous in the execution of our responsabilities in the two weeks that lie ahead of us. I shall try to obey your instructions, because the list of speakers is quite formidable.
While neither tradition nor custom calls for any statement of response to the address that the Director-General normally delivers at the opening of Council sessions, I have been so moved by what the Direct or-General has just said that I cannot refrain from sharing with you my reaotion in this respect.
I have been attending sessions of the Council for some years now. Every opening address of the Director-General is a statement of policy, as you have rightly pointed out, which justifies much reflection. After all, it is a statement which highlights the agricultural situation of the world, indeed a statement which delineates the direotion which the Organization is taking and which generally sets the framework for our discussions, and it is in this perspective that I wish to say something.
More than ever before, on this occasion I wish to emphasize the confidence that the Republic of Ghana and I am sure the governments of the developing countries have in our Director-General• His address shows clearly how he is living up to the expectations we had when we elected him to this high office. I recall that when he addressed the Conference just after his election, the Director-General emphasized that the Organization had to rethink its approaches to problems and ensure that its actions, both in their concept and operation, met the needs expressed by Member Governments*
I am certain that I must express the conviction of all present here when I assert that our Director- General has given us ample evidence of the precepts which he declared. In just over three years, the Organization has changed almost beyond recognition. It has changed firstly in the manner in which the Director-General helps us to address ourselves to longstanding problems with greater focus, vigour, fervour and effectiveness. It has changed in the way that the Organization is not just a monument to archives with ever expanding shelves. The accumulated competence and the studies carried out by FAO today are held in no less esteem than they were. On the other hand, by a process of close scrutiny and pruning, the studies of PAD today are more relevant than ever. However, FAO now goes beyond the stage of studies into a process of prompt, visible and effective action on every front. I need only give two examples. The sensitive issues of World Pood Security have been of permanent conoem to FAO. Some significant and useful work was done over the years. This received a sharper focus with the world food crisis of 1972-73. However, it is only in the most recent years that we have witnessed a concentrated attack on all fronts, with an integrity of design and a focus of action such as to ensure the required impact.
On the one hand, we have the Five-Point Plan of Action approved by our Committee on World Food
Security, which comes to us for adoption. On the other hand, FAO is assisting a number of countries individually to define and strengthen their own polioies, measures and facilities for strengthening their own food security.
The latest example of this is a very complex and perceptive study which FAO has just completed for the Sahel Zone at the request of CILSS. Again, on another front, the Direotor-General is increasing the capacity of food aid through the multi-lateral system, and yet again on another front, the Director-General has strengthened and shown the effectiveness of two action programmes responding to our needs, namely, the Global Information and Early Warning System and the Pood Security Assistance Scheme.
It is therefore abundantly evident that the Director-General has engaged the Organization on several fronts simultaneously to attack the problems of Pood Security, and he has done so not by dissipating the efforts of the Organization but by directly challenging and foousing them with greater clarity, so that the resources and efforts of the Organization may be complemented most effectively with the supplementary resources of bilateral programmes and the national resources of the developing countries themselves.
Yet another example which readily comes to mind is that of the Prevention of Food Losses This was a subject much debated over the years which has received attention in the most distinguished fora: at the FAO Conference, at the World Food Conference and at the Seventh Special Session of the General Assembly. All these bodies recognized the problem and adopted resolutions urging action to reduce food losses. Yet it is only in this biennium that an Action Programme was established and is operating effectively - all this thanks to our Director-General, Edouard Saouma; all this, Mr. Chairman, and much more.
My delegation intends to intervene positively and constructively in the course of our debates on a number of items of our Agenda, particularly on the Programme of Work and Budget for 1980-81. I will therefore refrain froa expressing our views at this stage on specifio priorities to which we attach importance. I Mould nerely like to close by expressing our most sincere admiration and gratitude to
our Director-General. for the statement he has just delivered and for the wisdom and care with which he has prepared our present Session, We look forward to his active participation in our debates and assure him of my Government's unqualified support, I am certain that I reflect the consensus, if not the unanimity, of the sentiments of this Council,
M.S. SWAMINATHAN (India): I shall abide by your desire that we should be brief and to the point, I also concur with your view that the Statement of the Director-General does not call for any specific debate or discussion. Nevertheless, my delegation felt that a statement of the kind made by the Director-General, one of great clarity, frankness and vision, certainly calls for a few statements of a general nature.
First of all, we are all aware here of the portent, of the meaning of the most important Statement he made, namely, that during 1979-80, he believes that in the best judgment of FAO there is likely to be a shortage of food production in terms of consumption requirements, I think this is a statement of very grave importance to the Council, and that is why we felt that we should underline the significance of the Statement,
Here everyone knows that for most of the last 20 years statements have been made in conferences that we should try to eradicate hunger within a particular time frame. In fact, the late President Kennedy opened the first World Food Conference by saying that within a decade there need be no hunger present in the world, that all the resources and technology are present to ensure this, and that these resources should be deployed to achieve those aims. However, the will to do this is still lacking.
Again, here in Rome, in 1974 the World Food Conference unanimously adopted a resolution that within a decade, that is by 1984, no child, woman or man should go to bed hungry, no human being's physical or mental potential should be stunted by malnutrition. This was a solemn declaration carried by all the countries represented at the World Pood Conference, but nevertheless, we have just heard the Director-General tell us that the World Food Aid Programme is going down, there is no support to the thrust of the programme. In fairness to the Director-General's frankness my delegation would hope that we would take this early warning, and it is my delegation's fervent hope that this highest body will come to grips with the problem,
Equal stress was placed by the Director-General on the sea as to the soil. It is ray delegation's firm conviction that as the need increases, the soil and the sea - the farmer and the fisherman - will be equally important in meeting this need.
Finally, we would like to compliment the Organization and the Director-General for taking the initiative in organizing a World Conference on Agrarian Reform and Rural Development and we hope it will be not only a body which has good literature compilation but could lead to a reversal of the present trend in most developing countries of an exodus of both brains and financial resources from the village to the city. If the Conference at least succeeds in getting a small reversal of this drain of brains and financial resources from the village to the city it will have achieved its purposes.
P. GERBASI (Venezuela): Al compartir muchos de los conceptos emitidos por los colegas qua me han precedido en el uso de la palabra, quisiera unirme a ellos para, expresar el aprecio de mi delegación por el significativo y amplio discurso pronunciado por el Director General, quien a nuestro juicio, una vez más da pruebas de su decisión y capacidad para enfrentar el reto que hoy por hoy tiene ante sí nuestra Organización.
Ciertamente, hay conciencia de que los problemas de la agricultura y de la alimentación a nivel mundial, pero muy particularmente a nivel de nuestros países en desarrollo, son complejos y de la mayor importancia; pero pareciera ser que no se hubieran dado pruebas suficientes de la voluntad política que se requiere para resolverlos, ni se ha motivado adecuadamente, quizá aun incluso en nuestros propios países, a los millones de personas sobre qué hay que hacer para que colaboren y coadyuven en estas soluciones. Estas soluciones requieren también recursos financieros en una cuantía suficiente. Mi Gobierno atribuye gran valor a las iniciativas y resultados alcanzados por la FAO, y consideramos esencial fortalecer su acción. De ahí la importancia que otorgamos a este período de sesiones del Consejo, que como usted bien calificara, quizás sea el más importante durante este bienio.
Es por ello que nuestra delegación tiene una decidida intención de participar activamente en todos los puntos de su orden del día, y esperamos poder contar en nuestros debates con la presencia del Director General porque, sin lugar a dudas, ello facilitará el desenvolvimiento de nuestras labores y coadyuvará a una solución adecuada de las mismas.
J. SCHWARZ (Czechoslovakia): While a number of my distinguished colleagues have already spoken, I cannot let this occasion pass without joining them in expressing my delegation's deep satisfaction at the address we have just heard from the Director-General.
Not only has he ably drawn our attention to all the issues to which we have to address ourselves in the coming days, but he has added the most up-to-date and relevant developments to complement the excellent documentation which had been forwarded to us.
My delegation has always supported our Director-General because of our conviction that under his leadership more than ever before, FAO is the leading world organization in the realm of food and agriculture, blazing the path for the effective implementation of the new International Economic Order. As always, we look forward to working closely with him throughout this Session and to support him in the many proposals he has submitted to us, which have the merit of being imaginative but pragmatic, far-reaching but realizable and capable of significant impact in the most economical manner,
J.J. LEIDO Jr. (Philippines): Mr. Chairman, the Director-General has again demonstrated his grasp of the world food and agriculture situation, his conscientious management of the broad spectrum of the activities of this Organization and his steadfast adherence to the assigned roles and responsibilities of FAO. The manifestation of FAO's judicious and timely actions are evident to all those who come from Asia and the Far-East region. This is evident in the prompt responses of the Director-General in times of catastrophe and acute human distress through the emergency food aid of the World Food Programme. Responses which may be tested further by incidents revolving around the refugees of Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos.
In addition, there are the programmes in food, livestock and forestry production. There are also programmes to develop fisheries in exclusive economic zones, programmes which are geared towards increased investment in agriculture and related sectors. Our region bears the responsibility for a large number of rural populations and rural poor than anywhere in the world. In this context, we are keenly anticipating the forthcoming World Conference on Agrarian Reform and Rural Development, and we are glad to be assured by the Director-General that as in previous instances he is ready to bring the full weight of this Organization to bear on the implementation of the programme of action that will result from this Conference. We wish to see this programme pursued.
We also wish to see a more concerned task along the lines defined by the Director-General, particularly in the areas of world food security as expressed in the proposed 5-point plan - nutrition, technical cooperation programme, investment, and a more decentralized FAO. I will not go into a detailed commentary on these and other programmes of activities that the Director-General has proposed, we shall have the opportunity to discuss them in greater detail during our sessions. Suffice it for the moment for us to say that we share the perceptions and concern of the Director-General regarding the world food and agriculture situation, and we concur with the policies and priorities he has proposed.
We also wish to express our observation that the Director-General has exercized a consistent capability of ensuring fidelity between programme intentions and programme actions. It is in the light of this common agreement of perceptions that our delegation humbly gives its support to the Director-General*s proposals for the next biennium. We are confident that the Council also shares these perceptions, based on a common understanding of the reality of the world food and agricultural situation, and that these programmes can succeed.
If there are to be variations of opinions on the perceptions of the requirements of the world food and agricultural situation among the Members of this Council, I pray that we soften our hearts and be less rigid in our postures, because the little bit of self-sacrifice that is asked for is far outweighed by the greater urgency that must be met.
A.Y. BUKHARI (Saudi Arabia) (interpretation from Arabic): First of all I wish to thank the Director-General for the very exhaustive statement that he has made covering the activities of the Organization and giving us an idea of the Programme of Work and Budget for the period before us. We are quite used to the clarity always present in the statements of the Director-General, clarity which takes into account all the problems faced by agriculture in the developing countries.
Concerning the countries of the Arabic group, I would like to draw attention to the investment programme, because of their importance in the development of these countries. We hope that relations between the Group and FAO will be ever-stronger and we are always grateful for the fact that special financial assistance has been given to the programme for the control of desert locust. This financial aid stems mainly from financial aid given by OFEC countries. We hope also UNDP will give assistance in this field of special assistance programmes.
Vie would like to support anything that can strengthen the programme of the Organization and which would pave the way to the new economic international order.
We feel that our Organization is carrying out its activities with high competence so as to meet the goals which are included in the Constitution of the Organization, and the aims and goals which are present in the Programme of Work and Budget. This Programme has been fully studied both in the COAG and in the Finance Committee. I have been able to discuss this Programme of Work and Budget in the Finance Committee meetings I have attended.
We also feel the proposals made by the Director-General in the summary Programme of Work and Budget are very pertinent adequate proposals which we should support, and we as the Arabic Group should also recall what has been done by the Director-General to strengthen the Arabic language structure in the Organization. We know that this has been a choice, if we compare our Organization to other Organizations.
Finally, we would like to express to you, Mr. Chairman, and the Director-General and all other members of the Organization, our best wishes for the success of this Session.
J.G. KHARAS (Pakistan): At the outset I would like to express to the Director-General and to you, Mr. Chairman, not only my sincere thanks but also those of the Government of Pakistan for the moving tribute that you have paid to the late Mr. Jawed Salim Khan. Mr. Khan was well known to many of us present here today. He was a very simple, sincere man whose qualities and ability spoke for themselves. We were very proud to have such a fine representative of our country, so respected and loved by his colleagues.
In the year that I knew him, I came to admire him as a colleague and friend and to entrust him with onerous burdens which he always carried willingly and conscientiously. His patience and skill combined with thought and flexibility made him a valuable contributor in committees and plenary sessions of FAO. His life, though short, was full of promise, and in his departure not only have we lost a good friend but my country has lost an outstanding civil servant.
It is only the actions of the just which in death smell sweet and continue to blossom in the soul. May his soul rest in eternal peace.
Please now permit me to make a few observations of a general nature on the statement of the Director-General. Our detailed comments on the various issues will be offered at the appropriate time when they are taken up.
We have heard the Director-General' s statement with keen interest and find it to be lucid and action-orientated covering the most important issues facing us today. We are glad to see that the Director-General has devoted special attention to the World Conference on Agrarian Reform and Rural Development, and in this we fully support his views. We would like to underline the fact that we do not like the Conference simply to debate the various issues. What we would like to ensure is that the Conference achieves positive results with appropriate follow-up action.
We are also in accord with the Director-General's views on world food security, and in particular his 5-point plan of action. We are glad to see he lays emphasis on food aid, the desert locust scheme, the Sanelian zone and the province of world food losses. His views on investment, including strengthening of the relationship with financing institutions and particularly the OPEC Special Fund's contributions to the Desert Lo ousts Scheme, have our full support and we sincerely hope that the UNDP Governing Council will be forthcoming with substantial additional funds for this scheme. It is clear that these special action programmes, along with FAO's Regular Programme activities, are contributing towards the achievement of a new international economic order and the formulation of a new international development strategy. We would particularly commend his stress upon action and the desire to achieve results.
We also note with satisfaction, though not mentioned by the Director-General in his statement just now, the priority accorded in the Summary Programme of Work and Budget to the increasing use of the Arabic language.
Finally, we should like to mention that Pakistan, as a member of the Programme Committee, has already lent its full support to the Director-General's budget proposal and we should like to reaffirm it here today.
CHAIRMAN: The Secretatetene ral has drawn my attention to the fact that we did not adopt the hours of work together with the timetable. The normal hours of work, as you know, are 9.30 to 12.30 and then 2.30 until 5.30 and I had taken it for granted, almost, that this is the usual practice but if you agree to these hours then we can take it as accepted.
It was so decided
Il en est ainsi decide
Así se acuerda
M. HAMD00N (Iraq) (interpretation from Arabic): On behalf of my delegation I wish to express our gratitude to the Director-General for the very clear and exhaustive statement he has made this morning. In his speech the Director'-General has well placed all the problems that we are facing concerning development in a general way and agricultural development in particular. We agree with the Director-General when he says that so far a consensus has been followed concerning the work carried out by the FAO meetings and we feel that consensus will continue to prevail in our meetings because the Director-General is really struggling against hunger and he is carrying a unique weapon which is the strategy that FAO has fixed itself as an objective.
My country has received the assistance of the Organization's programmes and projects, some of which have been mentioned by the Director-General. The efficiency of the Organization has become an example within the framework of international organizations and I should like to say that we fully support all the programmes and projects presented by the Director-General. We feel that this session will be a positive one and' will prove once again that our Organization is a very active one which wants to meet the objectives that we have already defined.
I would also welcome the humanitarian note included in his statement and, once again, I should like to thank the Director-General.
C. BATAULT (France): Je ne vais pas reprendre les différents points du discours du Directeur général, nous le ferons pendant les travaux du Conseil, mais je voudrais le remercier d'avoir bien voulu, à un moment particulièrement critique de l'évolution du monde où nous vivons, faire avec talent un tour d'horizon soulignant les points importants de l'action de la FAO et les problèmes auxquels nous avons aujourd'hui à faire face.
De ce qu'il a dit, nous pouvons être satisfaits de voir que l'Organisation est de plus en plus orientée vers un sens opérationnel vers des tâches concrètes, comme l'a souligné le Conseil de l'Europe. Le bilan est donc certainement positif, mais il s'agit pour nous d'un Conseil très important qui doit préparer l'avenir.
Je n'avais pas cité, je le répète encore une fois, les différents points qu'a évoqués le Directeur général, mais je voudrais simplement appeler l'attention de ce Conseil sur l'importance de certains d'entre eux, en particulier le problème de la sécurité alimentaire sur lequel, d'ailleurs, un porte-parole de la Communauté européenne vous demandera l'autorisation, quand on viendra à ce point de l'ordre du jour, de faire une déclaration.
Sur ce point, je voudrais appeler l'attention du Conseil sur l'importance d'une résolution adoptée par consensus le 3 juin 1979, à Manille, à la Conférence des Nations Unies sur le commerce et le développement. Cette résolution, qui était une résolution déposée par les pays en développement, invite instamment tous les pays participants à faire preuve de la volonté politique requise à la prochaine session du Conseil international du blé qui se tiendra en juin 1979 à Londres, à reprendre l'examen des principales questions non résolues et des nouveaux éléments qui pourraient être apparus et à s'efforcer de créer les conditions propres à assurer le succès des négociations, compte tenu des intérêts des pays en développement. Ceci nous apparaît être un point essentiel et j'espère que la délégation française, comme, je crois, toutes les délégations de la Communauté européenne espèrent que ces négociations pourront reprendre aussi rapidement que possible, dès juin 1979 si possible, comme le souhaite cette résolution de la CNUCED et en ce sens je précise que l'appréciation de M. Bergland que vous citiez me paraît un peu pessimiste.
Un autre problème sur lequel vous mettez l'accent est celui de la coordination qui est évidemment de la responsabilité essentielle des gouvernements eux-mêmes. Il nous semble que cette coordination doit revêtir un aspect aussi concret que possible et aussi pragmatique que possible. C'est bien cette
recherche du concret et cette recherche du pragmatisme, comme vous l'avez si bien souligné, qui doit être à la base de l'action de la FAO, action consacrée à la solution d'un des problèmes les plus graves, sinon le plus grave, que l'humanité doit résoudre aujourd'hui, celui de l'élimination de la sous-alimentation et de la faim dans le monde.
L.C.J. MARTIN (United Kingdom): I would simply like to express the gratitude of my delegation for the statement which the Director-General made this morning. It really was quite remarkable and I should like to assure him that we will do all that we can to help him in this task.
CHAIRMAN: I thank the delegate of the United Kingdom for his brief and very clear statement.
MAPELA NGA-MA (Zaïre): Si je tiens à prendre la parole après l'exposé du Directeur général, c'est surtout, comme vous l'avez d'ailleurs si bien dit ce matin, Monsieur le Président, parce que la présente session du Conseil revêt une importance particulière, importance qui a été mise en relief par le Directeur général dans son exposé et par les diverses délégations qui ont pris la parole avant nous.
C'est pourquoi, après avoir écouté avec attention l'exposé du Directeur général, ma délégation voudrait faire quelques commentaires au sujet de quelques-uns des points abordés par le Directeur général.
La nouvelle FAO que nous avions tous appelée de nos voeux est aujourd'hui en pleine action, en plein essor. Que de chemin parcouru depuis la soixante-neuvième session du Conseil en 1976! Trois ans après à la mi-temps si j'ose dire, nous pouvons féliciter sans hésitation le Directeur général de la FAO des premiers succès de sa politique. En effet, l'effort de débureaucratisation, loin de marquer le pas, suit vaillamment son cours. Les réunions et les publications sont judicieusement et fermement réduites et nous sommes tous témoins que la création de nouveaux postes à Rome est strictement contrôlée, la priorité étant accordée à l'accroissement fort modéré des effectifs hors siège.
J'en arrive au P.C.T. Ce programme est un tel succès qu'il est vain de procéder à une apologie dont nul ne ressent la nécessité. Je voudrais seulement confirmer la volonté de mon gouvernement de soutenir toute proposition et toute action tendant à améliorer qualitativement et surtout à renforcer quantitativement ce programme qui nous est indispensable.
Enfin, la décentralisation soulève l'enthousiasme complet. Preuve en est l'afflux constant de nouvelles demandes. Le Zaïre, mon pays, quant à lui, a la chance de bénéficier depuis un an des services du bureau de la FAO sur place. Nous en retirons d'ores et déjà des satisfactions bien concrètes.
Qu'en est-il maintenant de la priorité à l'investissement? C'est un sujet que le Directeur général a abordé ce matin. Nos espoirs ne sont pas déçus. Vous avez noté comme moi le formidable bon en avant réalisé par le Centre d'investissement ces deux dernières années. Nous ne pouvons qu'encourager une telle évolution et souhaiter que la FAO continue à renforcer les liens extrêmement positifs et opérationnels qu'elle entretient avec la Banque mondiale, le FIDA et les banques de développement régionales. Nous sommes également satisfaits de l'effort fait par le fonds fiduciaire.
Dans ce tableau réconfortant pour l'ensemble, je retiens une seule ombre. Il s'agit de la participation décroissante du PNUD au financement des projets de la FAO. En effet, l'accroissement et la diversification nécessaires et souhaitables des sources de financement devraient stimuler le PNUD au lieu de l'inhiber. Mais j'espère que l'avenir sera plus promoteur à cet égard.
Permettez-moi de passer maintenant assez brièvement à un sujet hautement délicat et même épineux. Le délégué de la France en a parlé. Il s'agit de la Coordination. Le Directeur général ce matin s'y était attardé. Face à un tel sujet, la tendance la plus communément adoptée est la prudence et la componction. La coordination est un domaine à propos duquel on fait volontiers des phrases redondantes propres à susciter le consensus. Dans ce concert apparemment harmonieux la voix du Directeur général se détache nettement. Je crois que nous devons lui être reconnaissants de sa franchise et de son objectivité lorsqu'il livre sans complexe ni détour ses réflexions sur la sacrosainte coordination. Pour ma part, je tiens à affirmer que ma délégation souscrit mot pour mot, au nom de notre gouvernement, aux termes que le Directeur général a employés dans son allocution. Ma délégation estime qu'on a souvent fait des abus au nom de ce concept de coordination. La véritable coordination, je suis d'accord avec la France et le Directeur général, la seule qu'il faille encourager vigoureusement, c'est la coordination par les gouvernements eux-mêmes. Le reste, c'est la théorie, pire encore la menace certaine et déjà concrète, d'assister impuissants à la prolifération de nouveaux postes de bureaucrates.
Je termine par une remarque d'ordre général sur le budget. Je me réserve bien sûr le droit d'intervenir plus en détail au moment opportun.
Je voudrais seulement confier aujourd'hui la gêne que j'ai éprouvée en écoutant le Directeur général se livrer pendant de longues minutes à un plaidoyer, par ailleurs remarquable de justesse et de précision, en faveur de son budget. Pourquoi se sent-il en quelque sorte contraint de consacrer tant de mots à défendre un budget dont le seul défaut, à notre avis, est de pécher par sa modération? Y aurait-il encore quelque résistance injustifiée? J'espère bien que non. Quoiqu'il en soit, je me permets d'appeler dès aujourd'hui l'ensemble des délégués à faire preuve d'objectivité. En fait, à quoi cela rimerait-il de "pinailler" pour le principe, et même presque par plaisir, alors qu'en définitive tout le monde devrait se rendre à l'évidence: ce budget a un montant qui n'atteint qu'à peine le minimum nécessaire pour répondre aux nombreux besoins des pays en développement en matière d'agriculture et d'alimentation.
M. SAMIR AHMED (Egypt) (Interpretation from Arabie): I would like first and foremost, if I may, to say that Egypt, an agricultural country of long standing is very grateful to the Director-General for his quite remarkable statement this morning, his statement I am sure participants will delve into in detail during the discussions. So the delegation of Egypt and the Government of Egypt wholeheartedly support the Director-General's proposals and also in the interests of developing countries. We feel this also echoes the needs and requirements of developing countries, which wish to achieve economic progress. The planning established by the Director-General has enabled the Organization speedily to contact the developing countries and be much more effective than in the past. This planning takes into account the sensitivities and needs and requirements of these developing countries so on behalf of the developing countries and on behalf of my own country I can assure you we give every possible support for the initiatives which are already yielding fruit in many areas such as planning within the framework of world food security, planning in the direction of WCARRD and we are also encouraged by the support he is giving for the New International Economic Order and we are encouraged by the strengthening given for the coordination and mutual aid between the Organization and the Member Countries and between our Organization and other international organizations and financial institutions whether international or regional.
Finally, I wish this session every possible success under your guidance because we are very proud to have you chairing this meeting.
S. MADEMBA SY (Sénégal): Pour la première fois après une longue absence de quinze ans, le Sénégal siège au Conseil. Je voudrais d'abord saisir cette occasion pour assurer au Président et aux membres du Conseil qu'il ne ménagera aucun effort pour apporter à vos travaux une contribution active.
S'il est des mots pour qualifier le discours de Monsieur le Directeur général que nous avons écouté avec la plus grande attention, je dirai: clarté dans l'exposé, franchise dans les idées, détermination dans sa voie, dévouement à lanoble mission de l'organisation qu'il incarne.
Notre organisation est entrée dans une ère nouvelle depuis la session historique du Conseil en juillet 1976. La lecture de l'acte constitutif avec un esprit nouveau qui d'ailleurs rejoint en droit fil celui des pères fondateurs de l'organisation a montré qu'elle est fondamentalement une organisation pour le développement et que plus que jamais la fille aînée des Nations Unies est destinée à promouvoir ce nouvel ordre économique international, qui est aujourd'hui à l'ordre du jour de toutes les conférences internationales et auquel nous aspirons tous. Ce n'est pas l'un des moindres mérites de M. Saouma, Directeur général de la FAO, de l'avoir engagée vigoureusement dans cette voie. Il faut se féliciter si le Conseil a été unanime à appuyer les propositions concrètes qu'il lui a soumises à cet effet en juillet 1976.
Lors de la Conférence constitutive de la FAO en 1945, le Premier Ministre du Canada, M. Pierson, a prononcé des mots toujours actuels lorsqu'il a dit: la FAO ce sont les gouvernements, ce sont les peuples, la réussite de l'Organisation dépend d'eux.
C'est pouquoi nous voudrions assurer le Directeur général, ses collaborateurs et ses fonctionnaires, de notre appui et de notre soutien pour l'accomplissement de leur mission.
Nous appuyons l'appel du Directeur général invitant la Communauté internationale à instaurer une meilleure sécurité alimentaire au niveau mondial comme au niveau national, régional et interrégional. Nous l'appuyons dans sa détermination à lutter efficacement contre les maux millénaires que
représentent les criquets pèlerins. Nous l'appuyons dans son appel pour augmenter les contributions volontaires aux divers programmes spéciaux que la FAO a entrepris en faveur du développement. Que soient ici remerciés les pays et organisations qui ont déjà répondu à cet appel.
Je terminerai en formulant le voeu que le budget soumis à l'examen du Conseil au cours de la présente session soit adopté à l'unanimité, sans réticence, et sans restriction de quelque ordre que ce soit. C'est le budget le plus modeste que l'on ait connu dans le système des Nations Unies, et si nous ne nous sommes pas inquiétés qu'il ait sacrifié à l'essentiel, c'est que nous avons foi dans la conviction de son auteur qu'il devrait oeuvrer pour la promotion du développement et de la coopération internationale.
P.A. HORAEES CARBALLO (Cuba): Veo que faltan pocos minutos para la una y he ido acortando mi intervención cada ves más y espero que lo que de ella queda tenga algori sentido.
En su discurso de apertura el Director General ha pasado revista, de manera breve y concisa pero con cerbero y profundo análisis, a los problemas más serios de nuestro ámbito; la agricultura y la alimentación.
De ese discurso se desprende y conforma cuan importantes son los temas que tenemos ante nosotros y qué preocupante es la situación alimentaria mundial.
Hi. delegación no quiere escatimar palabras para reconocer el esfuerzo que realiza el Director General por hacer aportes al logro de un nuevo orden económico internacional y no sería exagerado decir que la FAO se encuentra entre aquellas Organizaciones del Sistema de las Naciones Unidas que realizan grandes esfuerzos por alcanzar las metas de los países en vías de desarrollo y por la Comunidad Internacional.
Ahora que las Naciones Unidas se enfrascan en la elaboración de la nueva estrategia internacional del desarrollo; ahora que tenemos ante nosotros el reciente resultado del Comité Plenario celebrado en Nueva York el pasado marzo; ahora que la situación se presenta incierta en torno a la seguridad alimentaria mundial, cobra mayor importancia la necesidad de avanzar con mayor velocidad y decisión por el camino del nuevo orden económico internacional.
Id gobierno se siente complacido por la aplicación de la descentralización y por los beneficios que viene reportando, por ejemplo, el Programa de Cooperación Técnica. Un ejemplo concreto es el esfuerzo que se realiza para combatir los recientes brotes de fiebre porcina africana en nuestra región.
Deseamos aprovechar también esta breve intervención para ratificar nuestro apoyo al plan de acción de cinco puntos que hubimos de discutir durante la pasada reunión del Comité de Seguridad Alimentaria.
Nuestra delegación quisiera en esta ocasión referirse a otros temas, pero lo haremos más adelante según vaya avanzando el programa, pero queríamos, al menos, adelantar estas palabras de aliento y reconocimiento a la Organización y a quienes la dirigen, con el señor Eduardo Saouma a la cabeza.
le agradezco, señor Presidente, la oportunidad de haberme dado la palabra y le pido excusas por si he sido largo en mi intervención; he tratado de ser lo más breve posible.
X. MOSKOVITS (Malta): This delegation also sees you with very great pleasure again in the seat of Chairman of the Council and I wish to thank you and the Director-General for the very sensitive words you have spoken on the tragic death of our very dear and loved friend Mr. Jawed Salim Khan. Our deepest sympathy goes to his family and to his home country.
I would like to follow your advice and I do not wish to enter into the debate, much more so because the head of my delegation, His Excellency the Minister of Agriculture for Malta, is on parliamentary business, and not with us today, he will only come tomorrow, but I can assure you that we will study very carefully all the papers before the Council. I am taking the floor now only because I am inspired by the extremely interesting speech and the valuable comments of the Director-General.- 27 -
We see two main characteristics before us at the present time: on the one side a very dark world situation, on the other side a very small FAO. As I said, T do not wish to mention anything regarding the Programme of Work and Budget, which will be discussed in detail by my Minister. But I must refer to two points which were mentioned by the Director-General, the priorities which he attaches to the various undertakings in FAO and also the adequacy of the plans.
We wish to express our gratitude to all the donor countries and all those who contributed to the financing of special action programmes of FAO. On the other hand, this financing is not reliable on a continuing basis; we cannot rely on it. Tt must be the regular budget which provides for all the means to achieve all the work that FAO has initiated and has to carry out.
I can say that while we are in full agreement with the Programme of Work and Budget we are not in full agreement with the budget itself. We think that the means calculated are much too modest.
There are these main considerations before us. FAO's funds, and real funds, should not decline. On the other hand, the decisions of the Council at its July session in 1977 should be fully carried out. For this reason T think that the regular fund needs a stronger basis. I do not wish to go into details now. In our speeches later we will single out separate activities which we think must be strengthened and for which more financial provision should be made.
CHAIRMAN: We are very pleased to hear that your Minister will join us. This is a great honour to the Council.
E. HRAOUT (Liban) (interprétation de l'arabe): Je commencerai par présenter, au nom de la délégation du Liban, toutes mes condoléances pour la perte de notre ami à tous le Dr Khan.
Je voudrais également exprimer notre satisfaction devant le grand nombre de nouveaux pays membres qui se joignent au Conseil.
Je désire également remercier le Directeur général pour le remarquable discours que nous avons écouté ce matin. Nous connaissons tous Monsieur Edouard Saouma depuis très longtemps et nous le connaissons personnellement. Je me permets donc de dire que je connais peut-être un peu plus Monsieur Saouma car les relations qui me lient à lui sont des relations d'amitié qui remontent très loin et j'en suis très fier. Je suis de très près toutes les activités du Directeur général qui se trouve à la tête de cette Organisation à laquelle il a donné son cachet personnel, cette Organisation à laquelle il a donné plus d'activités afin qu'elle se renouvelle et qu'elle aille de l'avant.
Je voudrais également exprimer notre satisfaction devant le grand nombre de nouveaux pays membres qui se joignent au Conseil.
KONG CAN-DONG (China) (interpretation from Chinese): It is with great interest that the Chinese delegation has heard the statement of the Director-General, in which he has dealt with important current questions in the food and agriculture sphere at present. We are pleased to note the Director-General's endeavours on these questions.
As this Council session is to pave the way for the Twentieth Session of the FAO Conference to be convened later in the year one of its important tasks is to deliberate on the studies, goals, programmes and budget of this Organization for the next two years: this is important.
Over the last few years, led by the Director-General, FAO has pursued the policy of stressing work of practical benefit to the member nations and has carried out such useful activities in the world food and agriculture realm as strengthening the developing countries' technical capacity to develop agriculture, promoting technical cooperation among developing countries and adopting practical measures geared to crucial problems in the food and agricultural production of the developing countries. This is to increase their ability to rely on themselves. The key to the solution of the world's food problem lies here. This we are glad to note has received proper emphasis both in the programme of work for the current biennium and in the summary of the Programme of Work and Budget for the next two years submitted by the Director-General for the deliberations of our session.
It is our hope that FAO will continue its efforts to help its member countries, especially the developing countries, to step up the development of their food and agriculture production and that it will make its contribution towards the establishment of a new international economic order in the food and agricultural sphere. With this we wish the Councils current session every success.
C. McCLAIN (Liberia): In view of the precarious world food situation I would like to take this time to express thanks to the Director-General for a frank and practical statement which continues to give a frank and practical thrust to the policies, priorities and strategies of FAO. As I see it there is still much work to be done and this requires the considered action of all. In view of this I would like to say that you have the fullest support of the Liberian delegation for the realization of FAO's objective Programme of Work and Budget. We wish that the budget was a little higher, but we give our fullest support to FAO's objectives and FAO's budget as they relate to the alleviation of world hunger, especially in developing countries.
Finally, I would like to say congratulations to our Chairman and hope that as this is a very important Council the deliberations will lead to an overwhelmingly successful Council meeting.
Q. H. HAQUE (Bangladesh): First, Mr. Chairman, allow me to say how pleased we are to see yon again chairing this important session of the Council.
Permit me also to congratulate the Minister from the Philippines and my dear friend Mr. Bukhari on their election as Vice-Chairmen for this Counoil session.
The normal trend is that the Director-General's statement is followed by the agenda items that we take up. I see that this time there has been a spontaneous reaction from the floor by as many as twenty countries to the opening statement of the Director-General. We have seen that the statement of the Director-General is always frank and constructive. On this occasion other dimensions have been added. I notice that the statement has been pragmatic and is full of vision. The statement is pragmatic in its assessment of the present world food situation and has the vision to underline to the world what the future is.
The Director-General has underlined that the present as well as the future is not encouraging to the world community. He has underlined that the world community is lagging behind in its commitments to the hungry and the poor.
In his statement he has warned what lies ahead and what is the responsibility of the world community.
An important point that the Director-General has underlined is that never before has there been so much consensus as today about the way the FAO is moving in determining its goals and strategies, and perhaps this is the time that FAO needs the full and complete support of all its member nations in enabling this Organization to achieve its goals and objectives.
I liked the statement of my dear colleague from India when he mentioned what it was in the 1960s, what it was in the early 1970s and what it is today. The world in the 1960s was perhaps better than it is in the 1970s. The world today is no better than it was in the early 1970s. The world tomorrow will be worse than it is today. This is what we find in the brilliant statement of the Director-General. We will take it up when we discuss the agenda items one after another.
CHAIRMAN: We have now come to the end of the list of speakers on the agenda.
The meeting rose at 13.10 hours
La séance est levée à 13 h 10
Se levanta la sesión a las 13.10 horas