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4. Current World Food Situation (continued)
4. Situation actuelle de l'alimentation mondiale (suite)
4. Situación actual de la alimentación en el mundo (continuación)

W.A.F. GRABISCH (Germany, Federal Republic of): The delegate of Colombia, Ambassador Bula Hoyos, in referring to earlier statements yesterday has undoubtedly enriched our dialogue Having followed closely his intervention in his mother tongue I should like to clarify an issue on which he apparently did not get through what I had stated. When quoting from my Minister's statement given at the Eleventh Session of the World Food Council last week in Paris I did not say that developing countries alone should put their own house in order. On the contrary, I stated, and I quote again from my Minister's statement: "It will only be possible to accelerate the presently still too slow growth of world economy, which is criticised rightly in the document, if every country makes great efforts to put its own house in order and to ensure an exchange of trade as free as possible."

My second remark is that our envisaged increase of official development assistance to agriculture to almost DM one billion in 1985 has no direct link with agenda item 14 or the budgets of other international organizations.

My third remark is regarding the suggestions to increase the level of the International Emergency Food Reserve. We wish to draw attention to paragraph 92 of the document. Here one can see that donors responded effectively to emergency situations in 1984, again surpassing the level of that reserve without previously having raised it, and for 1985 this level was surpassed already as at February 1985. We feel that the voluntary character of that reserve should be maintained at the present level of 500,000 tons.

J.C. CLAVE (Philippines): My friends and fellow delegates, I will try to intervene as briefly as

I can but if I exceed the time alloted to me please forgive me; surely all of us understand that out

of a heart that is full sometimes flow too many words.

First, I wish to point out and bring to the attention of this distinguished Council the fact that you, as Chairman of this Council, are currently the Director-General of the International Rice Research Institute in the Philippines, which is my country. I take pride in announcing this fact, for it gives me a sense of hope, because I do believe that the man in the field like you, Sir, especially in my country, would know more of the conditions in the field and it is by knowing these conditions that one would fully understand the particular problems and propose effective solutions. One has indeed to be in the field, on the farm, or be a farmer, to understand the problems of agriculture.

The second point I wish to dwell on is to commend the Director-General and the Secretariat of this Organization for the good and excellent work which they have done so that this Council meeting ' will run smoothly and be productive,,

I wish to draw attention to the comprehensive and relevant: materials before us., I do not think I have to dwell further on the report, except to say that it is in fact comprehensive. The Secretariat has put before us data on food and agricultural production. In fact, it even went further into dealing with two of the major problems that face the developing countries, and these are dwindling provisions of concessional capital and the obstacles to the marketing of the agricultural products of these countries.

Indeed, the agricultural regions of the world are. faced with insurmountable odds, and I do not have to dwell on them either because you, my colleagues here, are aware of all of these problems.

Faced with these insurmountable odds I am compelled - and forgive me for doing so - to call attention again to the fact that the United Nations Organization and the other United Nations Agencies in the United Nations system were organized in accordance with a spirit of mutual concern and assistance at the time of their birth. I believe that it was this spirit of mutual concern and assistance which inspired the founders of the United Nations and the other U.N. Organizations to lay the foundations of our Organization, the FAO, as well.

As I ponder on the problem and contemplate on the spirit that brought forth the FAO I am reminded of two incidents during my yet brief stay here in Italy. I arrived here two months ago, on 9 April to be exact, to become Ambassador of my country to Italy and to be Permanent Delegate to FAO. Upon my arrival on 9 April the temperature here was something like 22 C. Coming in from Paris I told my staff, "it is very warm here, it is very hot!" And their answer was, providentially I thought, "Because of the winds from Africa".

Then after two weeks of stay here I found that my car was full of dust and I asked: "Why the dust?" My staff replied, "the dust from the Sahara". To me these became a symbol and as I face you today with a special report with a special focus on the food and agricultural problems of Africa I say to myself: "Africa has in fact become a symbol. But it is a symbol not only for that particular region but for my region as well, and many regions of the world when hunger is present. And there are many Africas today.

I will not proceed without commending - and this is my third point - those countries, the rich and affluent nations which have zealously worked through FAO and other international organizations to extend a helping hand to the underdeveloped countries. I must commend them, commend them because notwithstanding the fact that sometimes out of our frustrations as developed nations, we sometimes tend to conoemn them, holding them responsible morally or legally to feeding the whole of mankind. Notwithstanding this interest these have stayed on in these organizations. I must commend them specially because of my belief that there is always a way out. to withdraw from the Organization. There is the other alternative of staying out of the. Organization and not being blamed at all for the problems of the world; but instead of taking this alternative they have stayed with us and I hope they will remain.

The other point that I want to bring up is the fact that while we are concerned ourselves with productivity, and we think of productivity in terms of opening up more lands for agricultural production to meet the world's food requirements. This is the natural thi.g to do but I am disturbed by the fact that if this trend continues there will come a time when we will have no more new lands to open for agriculture. As I speak here of course I am not concerned only about the hunger that faces mankind today but, being a father as well as a grandfather, I am more concerned with the food supply, the food resources, that will be available to my children and more so to my grandchildren.

Therefore, it is my position to urge that FAO be concerned not only with the present hunger in the world but also with the hunger of the future generations of our children and grandchildren. Hence, I thought that in the course of this session we should consider proposals that would be geared towards rehabilitation, reclamation of those lands lost to the deserts or other arid areas and the conservation of lands that are now devoted to agriculture.

I have here statistics showing the loss of agricultural lands, the desertification of these lands, at 5 million to 7 million hectares a year. Hence, I thought that we should likewise consider measures, urgent measures I would call them, on the rehabilitation, conservation or reclamation of lands already taken away from agricultural productivity.

Every time we think of hunger or of the food problems of the world, the tendency is to look towards increasing productivity, opening up more land, increasing production of that land. As a farmer, I wish to say - experience shows that when one over-produces in his land sooner or later the land will produce no more. Again, I am aware of the future livelihood of my children and grandchildren.

In my country we have the best mangoes in the world. - Forgive me tor the commercial! From our scientific experience, we know that the more we induce these mangoes to bear more fruit, the shorter the fruit-bearing period becomes. This is also a point I wish to bring to the attention of the Council.

When I speak of increasing food production, I wonder whether our respective nations and governments - our respective peoples for that matter - when thinking of the hunger that faces us, should not think as well in terms of how we can control the excessive consumption of food by certain societies. When my children were here with me in Europe, I asked them to eat ali the food they could because there is a lot of food in Europe. But my children said, "We might get used to it, and we will miss a lot of it when we go back to the Philippines". I thought this was a message that should challenge all of us. There is excessive consumption of food in many societies in the world. We cannot here prescribe how much each person will consume, but probably the moral voice of this Organization should go forth against excessive wasteful consumption. We should hearken to the wise words of the great Gandhi -- I think it was - who said: "There is enough food in the world to meet everybody's needs: but not enough to meet everybody's greed". In speaking thus, 1 am guided by that wise counsel.

During the course of the discussion yesterday certain delegations - the problem was raised of moving food to where it is most needed. FAO, with its enlightened experience and wisdom, should consider developing food areas in critical regions of the world. I believe the Director-General mentioned yesterday the fact that there is some rain in certain countries of Africa and drought still in some other areas. However, we know definitely that there are areas which are good for agricultural production and areas which are not. This is what I mean by "food areas". As delegates, I feel we have been motivated to obtain assistance for agricultural development in our own respective countries, which is only natural, but I think it is time that FAO developed food regions in each of the critical areas of the world. For these areas FAO shall focus its concentration, its assistance and its energies in order to meet the food problems of those particular regions.

I have a proposal which I hope the Council will like. We have this meeting scheduled for almost two weeks. I am about to propose that with your able guidance, Mr Chairman, and that of the Director-General, we work hard enough so that we will be able to cut short our Council meeting, and the corresponding savings shall be earmarked for food programmes in the African region. This is a proposal of the delegations of the Philippines.

I hope I have not gone on too long. It has been my hope during this brief intervent ion that I have been able to contribute a little wisdom. However, my greater aspiration is that like you, Mr Chairman, and the Director-General, I should be able to reawaken and enliven the spirit that brought forth the banding together of our nations in the United Nations family, which is the spirit of mutual concern and assistance.

May I refer to the statement made yesterday by the Director-General when he said that on our fortieth anniversary we should on all occasions, not just before Council and Conference, emphasize our unifying aims, ideals and efforts, and set the highest example of cooperative consensus through fruitful collaboration and international accord to our ultimate constituents, the poor, the weak and the hungry millions of our world and I would add, to ourselves."

May I close by saying that if I have said anything by word or phrase which may not sound pleasant to anyone, it was never my intention to hurt anybody. Please consider my statement' in the context of the policy of the Republic of the Philippines, especially of its incumbent President, which is to extend the hand of friendship, goodwill and collaboration to all nations of the world.

R.C. SERSALE DI CERISANO (Argentina): No vamos a ser muy extensos en este punto, Señor Presidente, porque la intervención del señor delegado de Colombia ayer ha abarcado la casi totalidad de los puntos que nosotros habíamos incluido en nuestra intervención. En este sentido damos nuestro apoyo a esa declaración y en particular lo que se refiere a la disminución de la asistencia multilateral para la agricultura. Nosotros queríamos hacer hincapié especialmente en los efectos limitantes externos que hoy dificultan esa expansión del comercio y también la expansión de la producción agrícola en nuestros países.

Generalmente nosotros en este punto de la agenda, en todas las reuniones del Consejo, nos dedicamos especialmente a ver cómo nuestra situación y el avance de la producción agrícola en nuestros respectivos países mejora y de alguna manera contribuye a mejorar la situación actual de la agricultura en el mundo. En este sentido no vamos a hacer alusión a ello por considerar que la situación económica internacional es lo suficientemente grave como para que prestemos toda nuestra atención en este punto.

Nos vamos a referir a algunas cuestiones que están enunciadas en el documento en primer lugar y a otras que no lo están, en segundo lugar. Para nosotros el enfoque que hace el documento en cuanto a situación descriptiva, la situación general es aceptable; no obstante de su lectura surge que el análisis global que se realiza en el primer capítulo sobre todo, no permite comprender bien, ni tampoco las raíces del problema que afecta a la Región de América Latina y, mucho menos, en lo que hace a la situación de Argentina. Cuando se dice que se está al comienzo del final de la más grave recesión económica,.nosotros lamentablemente, a pesar de la amable explicación del Profesor Islam, no lo vemos así, ya que nuestros indicadores reflejan otra cosa. Si nosotros reelaboráramos los indicadores económicos externos a nivel regional, las cifras indicarían otra situación de la enunciada en el documento, porque el incremento de las balanzas comerciales positivas no son un resultado de la recuperación o de la reactivación económica, sino de la disminución de las importaciones por la aplicación de las políticas económicas de ajuste que implican tener mayores saldos en la balanza comercial para pagar intereses, servicios de la deuda, y no para promover el desarrollo económico de nuestras naciones.

A su vez la relación entre deuda y exportación a nivel regional, si lo analizamos a nivel regional no es lo mismo para todos los países. Para la Región ha habido una baja en cuanto a los niveles de deuda, pero eso ha sido por el aumento de las exportaciones de un solo país de la Región, que es Braril, y no del resto. A la vez si vemos cuál es el nivel de las relaciones de intercambios, vemos que ha habido una caída en eso, como también ha habido una caída en los precios internacionales; en ese sentido para nosotros la recesión está muy lejos de terminar.

Por otra parte, sobre lo que se dice en el párrafo 1, notamos que hay una leve contradicción con lo que se afirma en los párrafos 6 y 7 y mucho más con lo que se dice en los párrafos 49 a 51 sobre los factores limitantes al comercio. A su vez, en esta segunda parte del documento, cuando se habla de las razones que impidieron la expansión del comercio en 1984, además de las que se enuncian a nivel regional, nosotros pensamos que el documento es demasiado benévolo al tratar el proteccionismo y los subsidios a las exportaciones que practican los países industrializados. Nosotros acá lo que quisiéramos es que en el Informe final se reflejara esto de una manera mucho más realista y, sobre todo, desde el punto de vista de los países en desarrollo productores y exportadores de alimentos.

Aquí se citan cuatro razones que impiden la expansión rápida del comercio, pero nosotros creemos que justamente hay ms y en este sentido el proteccionismo y la práctica de subsidios es claro que también son un factor que impiden la expansión rápida del comercio.

Al principio de nuestra intervención cuando decíamos que la situación actual es demasiado grave para poder ocuparnos, en el caso de Argentina, de los avances que hemos tenido a nivel interno, decimos el porqué, porque estamos en presencia, estamos al inicio de una guerra a nivel comercial entre los dos más grandes productores de alimentos del mundo que, en principio y en los términos que lo plantean ambas partes, solamente será entre ellos. Nosotros queremos usar este distinguido Foro para decir que no es así, ya que los principales perjudicados de esta guerra de subsidios será el mundo en general, tanto los países que se dedican a la producción interna de alimentos, porque en ese sentido perderán incentivos y no verán incentivados a sus agricultores para la producción de alimentos, como también los países productores y exportadores de todo el mundo desarrollado y en desarrollo

Creemos que hoy urge más que nunca la aplicación de una gran cantidad de Resoluciones y Recomendaciones que hemos aprobado en la Asamblea General de las Naciones Unidas, en la Conferencia de la FAO, en este mismo Consejo y que hemos destacado muchas veces en el Comité de Seguridad Alimentaria Mundial, al cual nosotros le damos mucha importancia para el análisis de esta situación, y aquí nos referimos a la Resolución 2/79 de la Conferencia de la FAO, a la Resolución 2/83, en particular a su artículo 5, a la Resolución 3/83 de la Conferencia de la FAO, en particular la orientación 7, y a las Resoluciones sobre problemas alimentarios de las dos ultimas Asambleas Generales de Naciones Unidas.

En ese sentido, Señor Presidente, nosotros queremos terminar con nuestra intervención y hacer la salvedad de que no expondremos en este punto nuestra situación alimentaria a nivel nacional. Daremos los datos directamente a la Secretaría, debido a que queríamos hacer especial hincapié en los factores externos que perjudican la expansión del comercio y, por lo tanto, afectan a la producción agrícola y alimentaria en general.

J. MINTCHEV (Bulgarie) : Monsieur le Président, permettez-moi de saluer les trois Vice-Présidents à l'occasion de leur élection à ces postes de grande responsabilité et de souhaiter que la présente session atteigne des résultats très positifs. C'est avec beaucoup d'attention que nous avons pris connaissance du document CL 87/2 relatif à l'état de l'alimentation mondiale et à la production alimentaire mondiale. Il illustre parfaitement l'état de la production, de la consommation et du commerce des produits alimentaires. Il offre une image entière de la situation dans le monde par région et par type important de produits. Ce document se distingue par sa haute qualité professionnelle et le Secrétariat de la FAO doit à juste titre en être félicité.

Le problème de la production alimentaire a fait l'objet de l'attention de tous les Conseils de la FAO et il est fondamental tant pour les travaux de l'Organisation dans la réalisation des objectifs et tâches qu'elle s'est posés que pour l'avenir de l'humanité.

Les données statistiques présentées par le Secrétariat de la FAO montrent que la production mondiale moyenne de produits alimentaires s'accroît chaque année. C'est réjouissant, mais l'on sait en même temps que la répartition mondiale de cette production est extrêmement inégale. La onzième session du Conseil mondial de l'alimentation tenue récemment à Paris a annoncé par exemple que, pour la période 1983-84, la production alimentaire mondiale s'était accrue de 4,2 pour cent,mais cette augmentation se présente ainsi : 5,6 pour cent pour les pays développés et seulement 2,6 pour cent pour les pays en voie de développement. Si l'on tient compte du fait que dans cette même période la population des pays en voie de développement s'est accrue de plus de 2 pour cent, la disproportion entre la production et les besoins de ces pays ressort très clairement.

La question qui nous a préoccupés pendant les dernières décennies est de savoir ce qu'il convient de faire pour résoudre les problèmes de l'alimentation de l'humanité dans son ensemble. Il est nécessaire que soient mobilisés absolument tous les efforts de toute la communauté mondiale afin que soient assurés les fonds d'investissement et de formation de cadres locaux, que soient fournis les grains de semence, les engrais, les matériels agricoles et les technologies nécessaires à la modernisation et à l'intensification de la production agricole dans maints pays en voie de développement. A l'heure actuelle, l'assistance internationale apportée à cet effet est de taille, mais elle est de toute évidence insuffisante pour surmonter les problèmes. Il faut encore beaucoup de moyens dont une grande partie pourrait être trouvée dans les pays intéressés eux-mêmes, mais le reste devrait être apporté de l'extérieur.

C'est le lieu de déclarer qu'une partie essentielle de ces fonds pourrait être fournie par la libération de ressources suite à un désarmement réel et à une réduction des dépenses militaires. L'utilisation de ces fonds libérés et leur mise au service de la modernisation de l'agriculture pourrait contribuer à la solution du problème alimentaire. Il est maintenant clair que la solution de ce problème se trouve indissolublement liée aux relations économiques internationales. L'aide-alimentaire utilisée comme moyen de pression politique constitue une entrave sérieuse à la solution de ce problème. Le commerce international souffre gravement des tendances protectionnistes qui ont cours dans certains pays capitalistes. C'est seulement avec l'établissement d'un ordre économique nouveau et juste, sur une base démocratique, que l'on peut s'attendre à une augmentation des économies de tous les pays. Il est très dérangeant pour nous de constater les dettes énormes accumulées par les pays en voie de développement dont les limites atteignent des dimensions qui sont en dehors de ce qui est raisonnable.

Ce problème peut être résolu si les échanges se font librement, sans barrière pour le commerce international et,plus concrètement, en atténuant le protectionnisme, les conditions trop lourdes de crédits et en réduisant les taux trop élevés des intérêts de ces crédits, etc. La solution des problèmes de l'alimentation dépend aussi du développement des possibilités de production des divers pays, de la modernisation de leur agriculture et de l'amélioration de la condition sociale des travailleurs des régions rurales.

L'absence de cadres nationaux dans les pays en voie de développement, la pénurie des investissements et l'absence d'une politique adéquate en matière d'économie rurale sont, à nos yeux, des facteurs essentiels qui retardent la solution du problème alimentaire.

Il serait à peine possible d'élaborer un modèle universel de programme et stratégies à réaliser dans le domaine de l'alimentation et qui répondent aux intérêts de tous les états. Cependant, les problèmes de la famine dans le monde demandent une solution intégrale, une solution d'ensemble et non pas seulement et surtout des mesures pour surmonter l'actuel état critique que connaissent les pays africains. Pour ce qui est de l'Afrique, il est hors de doute que l'essentiel est de sauver la vie des gens et que pour cela l'aide doit être accordée à temps et sans aucune condition politique ou économique. L'aide doit être apportée aussi sous forme de transfert de technologie, de fourniture de matériel, de graines,ainsi que par la formation de cadres locaux.

Parallèlement, il ne faut pas perdre de vue les possibilités internes de solutions du problème alimentaire. Il est nécessaire d'accélérer partout et durablement le développement social et économique des pays en voie de développement. Une restructuration de la production et l'adoption de formes intensives de gestion de la vie économique s'imposent. A cet égard, l'expérience et l'exemple des pays socialistes et des complexes agro-industriels qui y sont organisés apparaissent comme très significatifs. Ce n'est donc pas le fait du hasard si des milliers de jeunes issus des pays en voie de développement font des études ou se perfectionnent dans les pays appartenant au système socialiste. La Bulgarie organise nombre de séminaires et cours de formation agricole. Elle envoie des coopérants dans les pays du tiers monde pour les aider dans leur développement et pour transmettre son expérience à ceux qui s'y intéressent.

Telles étaient les quelques questions que la délégation bulgare voulait traiter devant le Conseil de la FAO.

A. YILALA (Ethiopia): Mr Chairman, distinguished delegates and representatives of Member Nations, Dr Edouard Saouma, Director-General of FAO, ladies and gentlemen.

The Ethiopian delegation would like to express its satisfaction and pleasure to see you again, Mr Chairman, as our Chairman of the Eighty-seventh Session of the FAO Council. As one of the most prominent personalities in the field of agricultural science, we are sure that with your leadership this Council will be able to consider the situation of food and agriculture objectively and at length.

We should also like to congratulate the three Vice-Chairmen whom we are sure will be of great assistance to you.

Mr Chairman, with your permission we should also like to congratulate Dr Edouard Saouma, Director-General of FAO, on his continued efforts and contributions to the areas of increased food production and improved agriculture in general.

Our delegation would also like to thank Professor Nurul Islam for his excellent presentation of the agenda items for discussion.

The Ethiopian delegation considers that adequate food production for the increasing population of the world is one of the biggest challenges of the international community. With concerted effort tackling the challenge of increased food production is not beyond the means and know-how of the international community. However, it is not an easy challenge and it will therefore require the cooperation of all Member Nations and individuals with varying responsibilities in agriculture and in other areas.

We have all witnessed the 1984 food situation in which a few developed countries were able to increase food production and many of the developing countries were faced with severe food shortages which affected the lives of millions of people, and yet global food security was considered adequate.

In this connection we should like to quote from the statement of Dr Saouma to the Eleventh Session of the World Food Council: "The world food situation in 1984 was marked by a striking contrast between agriculture in northern countries where an ever-shrinking farm population produces enormous surpluses and the agriculture in the southern countries where peasants, who are the bulk of the population, are unable to feed themselves properly".

The increasing difficulties of earning hard currency and the low income level of most developing countries makes it. difficult for most of those countries to purchase food from the international market. Even if this was possible, international transportation and the distribution of food within a country will consume most of the resources of that country thus leaving very little or none for increasing production or other development activities.

This is a clear indication of how much resources are available within developing countries and the need for external assistance and cooperation to increase food production is therefore essential for the well being of its members.

While we support and appreciate the dramatic response of the international community as a whole to the severe food shortage situation with emergency and relief operations in Africa, we strongly feel the need for assisting developing countries to increase food production to achieve self-sufficiency, for we feel that the long term solution to food shortage problems lies in the capability of people to produce their own food. Increased food production would be possible within developing countries if it were not for the shortages of trained manpower and resources. The achievement of the two most populated nations, India and China, in food production is remarkable and a source of inspiration for us all.

Increase in food production within developing countries should be viewed from the points of view of both an adequate level of food production and an increase in the level of income for the rural poor, thus enabling the developing countries to plan for essential agricultural technologies in order to cope with the food needs of the increasing population while education on the need for population control is advancing. Thus the need for improving the present subsistence level of agricultural production becomes a priority area for the entire nation.

In Ethiopia, during normal seasons where agriculture is at subsistence level and world food production does not go beyond what is annually required, efforts are being made by the Government and the people of Ethiopia to avert the situation. This effort however was faced by the worst drought in 1983 and 1984, thus reducing food availability further. Favourable policies to increase food production were introduced, and major issues in food production were effectively tackled by the Ethiopian Government as a priority area of concern at the onset of our popular revolution.

The present form of land tenureship, which entitles the farming population to free usage of the land, is just one example of the progressive policy for food production. Rural institutions which form the basis for rural development and increase the participation of the farming population, were organized as peasant associations and cooperatives of various forms encompassing both services and production all the way from grass root level up to national level. Ideal grounds for increasing food production are established. What is lacking is the availability of technology and know-how to be transferred to the farming population for the objective of achieving increased food production. The achievement of further progress in this regard will therefore require further resources. Consideration for strengthening this effort so as to achieve food self-sufficiency through the introduction of appropriate technology, development of essential infrastructure, introduction of essential agricultural inputs including improved seeds and breeds, fertilizers and implements, as well as the improvement of the marketing system, are indeed the major commitments of the Government. However, as with any other developing nation, limitations of resources and know-how become a major hindering factor in achieving these commitments.

The long-term solution to achieve self-sufficiency is increase in food production, in our view, which will require trained manpower at the grassroots, contact, middle and high levels, agricultural inputs which will include improved seeds, breeds, fertilizers, implements, pesticides etc., and integrated and coordinated research, a good network and well designed extension programme, avoiding dependency on rain and increasing water usage capabilities, conservation of natural resources covering the areas of forestry, water and soil, better management of the food resources available,

introduction of new components of food into the regular feeding programme - such as fruits, vegetables including mushrooms, water food resources - which otherwise are left unutilised and idle in most of the developing countries.

The Ethiopian Government and people are aware of these needs and some work in this regard is also being initiated with the desired vigour and enthusiasm. Because of limitations of resources, the desired level of food production could not be achieved as rapidly as desired. Financial, material and technical assistance in this regard should be considered as a part of our long-term objectives of increased food production, and will receive the maximum support of the Ethiopian people.

Towards this achievement, projects were prepared with the assistance of the Director-General of FAO and the Secretariat of FAO on the rehabilitation of Ethiopian agriculture. The components of this request are far beyond what is required.

However, this would be a good start and would provide a good basis for our longer term objectives of achieving increased food production. In saying this, we do realize and recognize the importance of the Harare Declaration in food production and food self-sufficiency. However, the required resources are limited and need to be supplemented. Failure to recognize this will make the achievement of our long-term objective in food self-sufficiency difficult.

In April and May of 1985 the small rainfall covered most of the country, though later than the usual time. This was good for recovering the vegetation, increasing the water availability and softening the soil for ploughing with traditional implements. The major rain season, which is important for almost all food production, is expected to come anytime after the second week in June. We are already moving into the third week of June, and yet most of the agricultural inputs are not distributed to farmers due to late arrival, and some essential inputs have not yet arrived. Immediate considerations of despatch and improvement of deliveries will therefore require the utmost urgency. The discussions of all major international fora were dominated by the emergency and relief operations of food in 1984 and 1985. Major donors have responded favourably and our delegation is fully convinced that this is a proper response to the crisis which was facing us, and is therefore duly regarded and highly considered. Whilst recognizing the importance of the continuation of food aid for 1985 and 1986, we do notice that there are gaps between emergency food reaching the country and its distribution to the victims of famine, due to shortage of transportation which includes problems of lack of transportation vehicles, lack of spare parts, and problems with supply of fuel and tyres. Ethiopia at present is mobilizing the lion's share of its transportation resources to the emergency food operation, using both land and air transport. However, available transportation means are limited and lower than required.

Over and above this, other developmental activities which are essential have had to be delayed due to the priorities attached to the emergency operations. There is a very great need for supplementing those components to the emergency operations. In our view, the present food crisis will be brought to a possible minimum through a combined action of emergency food distribution and increased food production through the provision of increased agricultural inputs and know-how, and establishment of food reserves. The approach towards assisting Ethiopia should cover all these areas in order to achieve food self-sufficiency.

My delegation considers that the item for discussion presented to the Eighty-seventh Session of the Council includes major programmes to improve rural income, level of nutrition, and security of food supplies, the involvement of small farmers, women and youth in the development process, attention to be given to the role of minor crops in nutrition and food security, the national code of conduct on distribution and use of pesticides, agricultural price policy, implementation of strategies for fisheries management and development, the refocusing of the 1985 FAO Regular Programme in support of rehabilitation requirements, and strengthening the global information and early warning system of food and agriculture. These are all important areas for consideration, and will all contribute towards improving the food situation and alleviating the suffering of human beings from hunger.

We would therefore like to indicate our firm support and commend the efforts of the Director-General and of FAO for their remarkable initiative.

Last but not least, we would like to communicate our satisfaction and pleasure in seeing the delegation of further authority to WFP by the Secretary-General of the United Nations and the Director-General of FAO. We hope that this present solution will solve most of the long-standing and administrative problems.

J. ORZESZKO (Observer for Poland): My delegation is very pleased to see you again in the Chair. I wish also on this occasion to congratulate all the Vice-Chairmen unanimously elected yesterday.

In order to be brief, I shall concentrate my remarks on the African problem, but with your permission I would like first to say a word of sympathy from my nation to families of flood victims in Bangladesh.

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It is for the first time in the history of this Organization that we face such an unprecedented destruction in the economy of a whole continent. The situation, which threatens not only the present but also the future of the African people, speaks for itself. Searching for roots of this phenomenon, it is beyond doubt that the present situation cannot be termed as an unexpected course of events which has developed only recently. Already prior to 1980, the economic problems facing this continent had been manifested. In most cases drought and desertification had completed the dim picture. The world economic recession has further aggravated the unfavourable impact of different factors. Africa has been affected more severely than any other region by the deterioration in the terms of trade.In the sub-Saharan Africa where the situation is extremely critical, food production per capita has been falling roughly by 1 percent a year for more than a decade. More than 150 million people are faced with hunger and malnutrition. Even now, despite some positive developments in the world economy, prospects for most African countries for 1985 and beyond have not much improved.

A solution of the problems should, by necessity correspond to their nature. While the emphasis is understandably put on the mobilization of emergency assistance, in particular food and other survival items, one must not forget as the excellent document before us implies - that best assistance is through development that needs to be revived. To help Africa to be able to help herself should be another, of equal importance, field of our interest.

Mr Chairman, it is in these two directions - immediate relief and longer term self-reliance consolidation aimed assistance - that Poland desires to bring her contribution. Sharing the deep concern of the African governments over the fate of their peoples and highly appreciative of their own efforts to combat emergency situations, Poland renders full support to the expansion and coordination of massive emergency aid designed not only to feed the people but also to limit the effects of drought or other natural calamities.

Answering the appeal of the Ethiopian Government, Poland joined the international relief effort to the drought victims in that country, supplying in the second half of 1984 and at the outset of 1985 food and medicaments to the Ethiopian authorities. Our population generously responded, despite still persistent economic difficulties of Poland. Appreciating the role of transportation and logistics in relief operations, the Polish Flying Squadron composed of heavy transport helicopters has been put to the disposal of Ethiopia to carry out the distribution by air of food and medicaments. The Squadron cooperates with similar services provided by other countries.

As far as the longer-term assistance for Africa, Poland offers growing opportunities of training in various domaines, both bilaterally and through the UN system, FAO in particular. Recently new offers of training have been made for UNDP consideration. It is our view that preparation or upgrading of qualified cadres to tackle the problems of their countries is a vital factor in the strengthening of their "human infrastructure".

Mr Chairman, impressed by Dr Edouard Sauoma's deep personal involvement to mobilize public opinion towards the African disaster and having in mind the competence of FAO staff as well as the efficiency of FAO's food aid programmes, my Government recently decided to make an exception to our general line to provide assistance through bilateral channels and is ready to present a group of fully qualified experts in animal health and animal production at the Director-General's disposal. Paid by my Government they will serve as volunteers in the framework of FAO activity in most affected African countries.

CHAIRMAN: I now request Professor Islam to make some remarks on the points made by the delegates.

N. ISLAM (Assistant Director-General, Economic and Social Policy Department): The Secretariat is very grateful to the distinguished delegates for various helpful comments and suggestions. I would respond to the very specific queries made in the course of the debate.

Several delegates have requested that a number of statements in the main document need updating. Some of these have been updated already in the document which is supplementary to the main document, that is CL 87/2-Sup.1, but we have taken careful note of the various suggestions made for updating by the delegates. One suggestion was made that the document should have included short-term forecasts on the food and agricultural situation in either regions or country-wise. We have made some very broad references about the short-term crop forecast in the document. However, FAO does publish a set of documents relating to the short-term food situation and forecast. They are, if I can remind the distinguished delegates about them: - The Food Outlet Bulletin - monthly; Foodcrops and Shortages - monthly publication; The Africa Food Situation, special report - monthly, and we have Cereal Import Requirements which is about 3 or 4 months every year. So all these reports really do forecast on the evolving food situation throughout the year, and they are continuously updated and get revised, so we thought in view of all these publications we would not need to include short-term forecasts again in this document in any great detail.

It has also been pointed out that the document in the discussion does not discuss the annual situation in the context of long-term planning. Here again the concentration of this particular document is on an analysis of the current food and agriculture situation and not on discussion of long-term trends. Of course the reference is true, long-term development is mentioned in one or two relevant places, for example in Table 2 on page 5 we have compared the world and regional food production statistics as compared to the average between 1980-84. Again on page 23, Table 10, we have done the same thing, our per capita food availability in 1983/84. Changes between 1983/84 have been compared with other former years. So wherever relevant we have made this comparison, but I wanted to emphasize the focus of this report on the current food and agriculture situation. We do undertake long-term trend analyses which is more fully set out in our Food and Agriculture publication, but also there are special chapters from year to year and from time to time on long-term trends and development. For example, next year, 1985 the State of Food Agriculture will include a mid-decade review of the food and agriculture situation. Again our Conference document is here. The monitoring report on guidelines for international agricultural adjustments also includes an analysis of a longer-term situation.

Reference was made to discussions on resources, land use, environment etc.; why are they not included in this short document. Again here the space and the nature of the document precludes analysis of these issues which are better reserved for the fuller issue of the State of Food and Agriculture, and also I want to refer to the special issues which there are from time to time, special chapters, which relate to the specific topics. For example in 1977 we had a special chapter "The State of Natural Resources and Human Environment for Food and Agriculture". In 1979 we had "Forestry and Rural Development." In 1980 "Marine Fisheries in the New Era of National Jurisdiction", etc. so these special issues are covered from time to time in the "State of Food and Agriculture".

Questions have been raised about the overall Official Development Assistance, and the relationship of the overall development assistance to the resource flow to the Agriculture sector. I can give you some figures here. Compared to 1980 there has been a decline in overall development assistance, ODA, Official Development Assistance, in 1983 it was 33.600 million compared to 1980 figure of 37.500 million and whereas the decline in the official development assistance between 1982 and 1983 was by 3 percent, the agriculture sector declined by 12 percent. In other words the decline was much greater in the flow of official assistance to agriculture compared to overall development assistance. If you compare with 1980 the ODA, overall development assistance, declined by 10 to 11 percent whereas that to agriculture declined by 14 to 15 percent.

It has also been suggested that the document should have mentioned other cereals which are lumped together under one category, so called coarse grains, and it should mention each of the categories such as maize, sorghum, separately. I think this is a point well taken. We do recognize the importance of other crops as well as maize, sorghum and millet, but in this short document they are lumped together. There are other publications where we do discuss the individual crops separately. We have also mentioned here of course besides cereals, pulses and roots and tubers which are separately mentioned in some of the tables, but this is a point which we do recognize and we should mention individual crops separately.

Now a question was asked about the mention of supply control measures in the document. What are the supply control measures in the developed countries? I will illustrate only by reference to a few such measures. For example in the United States instead of cereals there are still measures ongoing to hold land out of cultivation, and there are proposals, as mentioned by the distinguished delegate from the United States yesterday, to reduce levels of support prices with a view to reducing output. In the EEC there is an upper limit on the quantity of cereals which are eligible for food price support. In respect of milk production there are quotas in the EEC as well as super levies where the deliveries exceed defined quotas. In the USA there is a payment programme for producers who agree to reduce milk production and there are attempts also to reduce support prices.

CHAIRMAN: May I thank all the 29 Council members and two observers who spoke on this important item of our agenda. I would like to join them in thanking the Director-General for the clarity and comprehensiveness of the documentation provided to us and Professor Islam for his illuminating introductory and closing remarks. At our last meeting in November 1984 I mentioned "knowledge leads to unity; ignorance to diversity". Obviously in a gathering of this kind there will be varying perception of both problems and solutions. Thanks however to the excellence of the information provided in documents CL 87/2 and CL 87/2-Sup.1 you will agree that the interventions of the various delegates revealed an impressive sense of unity both in the diagnosis of major global agricultural maladies and in the prescription of remedies. From the various suggestions heard, it is clear that the Council is seeking a new International Agricultural Order based on five major principles.

First, the global agricultural scenario reveals considerable diversity in per capita productivity. Some countries and some parts within large countries in all the continents have practically no gap between potential and actual yields at currently available levels of technology. In contrast, the yield gap may be as high a¿ 80 percent or more in others. The constraints responsible for the prevailing yield gap may be ecological, technological, educational, socio-economic and/or political. Obviously, socio-economic and political factors may be both internal and external, and their relating importance may vary from country to country. National and international action is needed to identify and remove the constraints responsible for inadequate progress in improving the productivity, profitability, stability and sustainability of major terrestrial and aquatic farming systems.

Secondly, in spite of much patchiness in agricultural progress, more than enough food is already produced in the world to provide a balanced diet for all its inhabitants. Global, regional and national policies for equitable distribution and improved consumption by the rural and urban poor are therefore urgently needed, a topic we will be discussing later under Item 6 of the agenda. Can the concept of "humanitarian food reserve" mentioned by the delegate of the United States become an integral part of a new international agricultural order with all nations contributing to the maximum of their capacity?

Thirdly, it is clear that people with purchasing power seldom go hungry. Greater opportunities for both on-farm and off-farm employment are essential for higher household purchasing power. Continued food imports by predominantly agricultural countries will have the same impact as importing unemployment, since imports will lead to keeping local farmers at low levels of productivity and employment. Hence, a livelihood security plan based on opportunities for earning one's daily bread will have to be developed based on an appropriate blend of technologies, services and government policies.

Fourthly, small and subsistence farmers who constitute the majority of the farming population in many developing countries will not produce more than what they need for themselves, unless they are assured cash and/or goods with the timely and adequate supplies of agricultural inputs and of basic goods such as clothing, salt, soap, blankets, cooking oil, matches, sugar, paper, pencils, batteries, etc. will enable and stimulate small farmers to produce and earn more. Hence, it will be desirable to reserve a certain proportion of the funds available for aid and relief for purchasing at remunerative prices surplus produce from small farmers and for providing essential consumer goods. The grains thus purchased could be used in the same country for a "Food for Work" programme for promoting agricultural and ecological rehabilitation and a "Food for Nutrition" programme for insulating old and infirm persons, pregnant and nursing mothers and pre-school children from starvation.

Finally, current trade, aid and investment patterns need a thorough review. Shrinking commitment to multilateral and concessional assistance, expanding debts and debt servicing burdens, import restrictions and export subsidies, trade wars and increasingly unfavourable cost, risk and return structure of farming to the world's small producers, inadequate availability of capital for the modernisation of agriculture and in some cases, the very model of agricultural modernisation adopted having built-in seeds of ecological and social biases, are all areas which deserve concerted attention and equitable solutions.

The urgent need for a new international agricultural order has been highlighted by the food situation in Africa. Hence it is appropriate that we now turn our attention to this item of our agenda. I will ask Dr Islam to introduce this item.

5. Food Situation in Africa
5. Situation alimentaire de l'Afrique
5. Situación de la alimentación en Africa

N. ISLAM (Assistant Director-General, Economic and Social Policy Department): The item for discussion, "Food Situation in Africa", is located in document CL 87/13. I also ask you to refer to document CL 87/2 Supplement 1, which in paragraphs 10 to 20 gives the situation in the drought-affected countries at the end of last month. The Rehabilitation Programme, the subject of CL 87/13 Supplement 1, will be introduced by my colleague, Mr Lignon.

As is well known to delegates from the numerous reports and alerts given by FAO's Early Warning System, the current African food crisis began to assume alarming proportions early in 1983. For the 1984/85 marketing year, 21 countries in Africa faced abnormal food shortages, 15 of them for the second or third year in a row. Although the situation has improved in some countries of the region, the food supply position remains critical in a number of other countries, and reports continue to be received of widespread malnutrition and death from starvation in some. In eastern Africa, logistic constraints are seriously impeding the delivery and internal distribution to the most seriously affected areas of Ethiopia and Sudan. In western Africa, the present rate of delivery of food is well below the needs in several Sahelian countries, where the available supplies of food are not sufficient even to meet the minimum needs of the most severely malnourished sections of the population. In southern Africa, several countries will again face exceptional food supply difficulties in 1985/86 as a result Of drought and the disrupting effects of civil strife and lack of inputs.

Africa's food import and food aid needs are at record levels. FAO has estimated that the 21 most severely affected countries would require cereal imports of over 12 million tons in the current season. After allowing for increased commercial imports of 5.2 million tons, food aid requirements are 7 million tons, which is more than double the figure of 1983/84. Donor pledges currently amount to 6.6 million tons, but only 3.6 million tons of this has so far been delivered.

It is necessary to give the utmost consideration to the implications of the present delays in food deliveries. The most serious problem is where the rate of food deliveries is well below needs, thus exacerbating the extent of distress and starvation. Internal logistical problems are an overriding impediment in some areas, and the coming of the rains will worsen the transport and distribution difficulties. For instance, the inability of Sudan's railway system and roads to carry food to affected areas are causing mounting stockpiles at Port Sudan. Likewise, food targeted for Ethiopia is piling up in the country's ports for lack of sufficient road and rail transport. But there is also another potential problem on the horizon if the food delivery delays continue, namely the possibility of discouragement to local production efforts if the arrival of food aid supplies should coincide with the forthcoming harvests.

Thus, as document CL 87/2-Sup.1 points out, only quick action by the international community working with governments of affected countries can avert a further deterioration in the food supply situation in the most critically-affected countries of Africa. The main objectives of such action should be:

to accelerate the delivery of food aid to deficit areas, in some cases requiring additional logistical support; to provide additional food aid to countries whose requirements are not covered and whose harvests are still some months distant; and to provide seeds and other inputs to enable the 1985 crop to be planted where it is not already too late.

I should like to draw the attention of the Council to the fact that the present emergency is indeed superimposed on the longer-term crisis in the African food situation. The document reveals the longer-term aspects of food and nutrition in Africa in paragraphs 18 to 38 and highlights the challenges which these developments present to Africa and to the international community. As is demonstrated, per caput food production has shown a long-term decline in 32 of the 46 African countries. Food imports on commercial terms have become more difficult to finance from slender foreign exchange resources. High population growth continues in most countries of Africa, putting stress on fragile land resources. And rapid urbanization continues to magnify the strains on the distribution systems.

R.S. LIGNON (Sous-Directeur general, Departement du développement): Je voudrais parler du programme de relance de l'agriculture que nous avons préparé, étant entendu que ce programme de relance s'insère entre l'aide d'urgence et les projets de développement a moyen ou a long terme qui constituent le fond de l'aide qui est apportée à l'Afrique.

Avant d'aborder a proprement parler le thème de la relance, je voudrais rappeler qu'avec l'appui unanime de tous les pays membres, y compris des pays membres qui se trouvent quelquefois dans des situations très difficiles, la FAO a focalise une grande partie de son programme sur l'Afrique, puisque plus de 40 pour cent de ses ressources financières et techniques sont consacres a l'Afrique.

Maigre la chute des crédits, des ressources financières du PNUD, et grace aux Programmes de coopération FAO/Gouvernements la FAO a pu maintenir à un niveau eleve son programme d'aide à l'Afrique puisque chaque année l'Afrique reçoit plus de 100 millions de dollars d'aide - 100 millions était le chiffre de 1984, il sera probablement de plus de 120 millions cette année dans le cadre de nos programmes d'assistance technique.

En outre je voudrais rappeler que le Centre d'investissement a, dans la période 1980-84, prépare plus de 99 projets dans 41 pays africains qui ont ètè approuves par les organisations de financement internationales et le total de ces investissements représentés par ces 99 projets s'élève à presque 3 milliards de dollars sur lesquels 1 milliard 700 millions proviennent des sources de financement extérieur, le reste étant financé par les pays eux-mêmes.

A la fin de 1984 le Centre d'investissement avait en outre terminé la préparation de 36 projets de l'Afrique, au sud du Sahara, représentant un montant d'investissement de plus de 200 millions de dollars qui sont actuellement a l'étude des organismes de financement. Ceux-ci, avec lesquels le Centre d'investissement travaille, sont essentiellement la Banque mondiale, le FIDA, la Banque africaine de développement ainsi qu'un certain nombre de Fonds importants comme les plus grands Fonds arabes, le Fonds européen de développement et encore d'autres Fonds de financement.

Autrement dit, le programme de la FAO sur l'Afrique est déjà très important. Si l'on a construit un programme de relance c'est parce qu'il faut considérer que la crise de l'Afrique est l'aboutissement d'une degradation progressive des systèmes écologiques et des systèmes de production qui peuvent quelquefois atteindre des seuils d'irréversibilité et qui pourraient conduire a des situations qui ne seraient plus réversibles et qui, de ce fait, mettraient en danger, comme tout à l'heure l'a indique le Prof. Islam, la reprise même et l'avenir de l'agriculture africaine. Je ne vais pas m'étendre sur les conditions dans lesquelles ont été préparés ces projets de relance de l'agriculture. Ils sont décrits dans le document CL 87/13 mais ce que je voudrais souligner essentiellement auprès de vous c'est que ces projets ont été préparés en accord avec les gouvernements des pays membres avec l'appui des représentants de la FAO et pratiquement tous les services techniques de la FAO ont été mobilises pour cela.

La liste des pays qui ont été finalement choisis est fondée sur les évaluations du système mondial d'information et d'alerte rapide ainsi que sur les résultats des missions d'évaluations des équipes speciales FAO/PAM et, globalement, dans les 21 pays qui ont été retenus a ce moment-la c'est-à-dire l'Ethiopie et 20 autres pays africains, nous avons préparé 229 projets qui représentent 216 millions de dollars. Comme le Directeur général de la FAO vous l'a indiqué a plusieurs reprises, nous avons suivi très étroitement, a la suite des reunions qui se sont tenues le 29 janvier et le 29 mars a Rome, avec les donateurs potentiels les moyens de financer ces projets étant donné que ceux-ci avaient reçu un support unanime au cours de ces réunions. Je dois vous dire qu'a ce jour les résultats - et je dois en remercier la communauté internationale - sont particulièrement intéressants puisque l'on peut dire qu'actuellement 72 pour cent en valeur des projets qui ont été préparés ont reçu une attention particulière des donateurs et que, parmi ces 72 pour cent, 32 pour cent des projets ont été financés. Trente-deux pour cent, cela veut dire que sur le total de 216 millions de dollars 70 millions de dollars ont déjà reçu un financement.

Je dois faire deux commentaires sur ces chiffres. Le premier c'est que la plus grande partie des financements qui ont été déjà approuvés se réfèrent à l'Ethiopie. Il est clair que la Conférence qui s'est tenue a Rome sur l'Ethiopie s'est passée deux mois avant celle qui s'est passée a propos des 20 autres pays africains. Par conséquent, nous avons eu un peu plus de temps et les 59 millions de dollars du programme éthiopien qui représente 13 des 35 projets qui avaient été préparés à propos de l'Ethiopie ont été essentiellement financés par des organismes de financement internationaux comme la Banque mondiale, le FIDA, le PNUD et je dois dire que ces projets qui ont été finances et acceptes par ces agences sans notre propre participation nous permettent de penser que le programme Ethiopie pourra être à brève échéance à peu près complet, satisfait.

En ce qui concerne les programmes pour les projets relatifs aux 20 autres pays africains, actuellement les financements approuvés sont de l'ordre de 10 millions de dollars et, parmi les pays qui ont approuvé des projets, je voudrais signaler un certain nombre de pays qui ont déjà fait connaître à la FAO qu'ils utiliseraient les services de la FAO pour les exécuter. Je veux citer la Belgique qui s'est engagée pour plus de 2 millions de dollars et 4 projets; l'Espagne pour 3 projets et 350 000 dollars environ; et je voudrais dire que certains autres pays ont exécuté des projets bilatéralement. Je peux citer la France, le Danemark qui a pris un projet qu'il engage bilatéralement. Je voudrais dire aussi que la Chine s'est engagée pour 8 projets bilatéralement; par ailleurs, et cela est extrêmement satisfaisant aussi,qu'une organisation non gouvernementale allemande ait pris l'engagement de financer 1 300 000 dollars pour 3 projets qu'elle fera exécuter par la FAO et récemment une organisation non gouvernementale japonaise a commence a participer au financement de ces projets.

Il est bien évident que la mise à exécution de ces projets doit être faite rapidement. Certains d'entre-eux devaient même démarrer dès la prochaine campagne si l'on veut qu'ils aient tout leur impact et c'est la raison pour laquelle, sur ces ressources propres, la FAO a engagé l'exécution d'un certain nombre de projets pour un montant total à ce jour de 4 millions 800 000 dollars. Voilà comment se place le programme de la situation du programme de relance de l'agriculture dans les 21 pays africains.

Je voudrais ajouter quelques commentaires. Le premier c'est que cette liste de 21 pays a été établie à un moment donné dans les conditions que je vous ai indiquées. Il est clair qu'elle pourrait être modifiée, en particulier à la suite de missions d'évaluation envoyées dans un certain nombre de pays. Nous avons pensé que quatre pays devraient pouvoir bénêficier de ce programme de relance: Djibouti, Sao Tomê-et-Principe, la Gambie et la Guinée-Bissau. Ces quatre programmes sont en cours de préparation et à une date rapprochée vous seront communiqués les résultats de ces missions et la liste des projets qui devraient être mis en oeuvre rapidement dans ces pays.

Le second commentaire que je voudrais faire c'est que ce programme de relance qui est concentré sur ces pays actuellement n'a pas modifié l'effort que la FAO faisait dans le reste de l'Afrique, puisque actuellement, en dehors de ces programmes, le programme de la FAO sur les produits africains n'a été modifié en aucune manière et que, par conséquent, tous les autres programmes qui ont été mis en oeuvre sont en cours d'exécution.

Je crois que globalement c'est ce que je voulais vous dire sur la situation du programme de relance en Afrique et évidemment je me tiens à votre disposition, M. le Président, si vous avez des questions et si MM. les délégués ont des questions plus précises à poser.

D. HUTTON (Canada): I wish to thank Professor Islam and reassure him and the Council that we in Canada are sensitive to his introductory comments, and are doing our utmost to respond to the logistical and timing factors of food aid shipments and rehabilitation programmes in Africa. It is a critically important and difficult challenge for all those involved in these operations.

Overcoming the crisis in food production and distribution in Africa is perhaps the major development challenge faced by the international development community at this time. Its place on the development agenda of every international institution is testament to this fact. The document before us - CL 87/13 - is a good one both in its analysis and prescription. I congratulate the Secretariat, and would like to quote from the paper's conclusions in paragraph 65, where it is stated:

"In order to prevent such a disaster, a radical break with the past is needed, involving profound structural changes". We share this view, as I believe does everyone who analyses the alarming and continuing trends before us.

A strength of this document is its focus on the vulnerability of depleting land resources, vulnerability to both nature and, most critically, to man. Continued population growth in many countries within current economic and social parameters is clearly not sustainable. These parameters must be changed. Nature finds its own equilibrium. Our profound collective challenge is to seek and establish a new equilibrium radically different from the one projected in the sub-text of the analysis of this document.

The analyses and information flowing out of international organizations such as FAO, the World Bank, the World Food Programme, IFAD and others clearly provides us with a basis for action. The more coordinated flow of the massive increases in food aid to Africa under the auspices of the WFP is another. We welcome and encourage the collaborative approach which is evolving between United Nations institutions, as witnessed by the Joint FAO/WFP Task Forces, and the United Nations Emergency Operations for Africa as an effective marshalling of capacities and resources.

Examples of effective responses are also available. To cite one at national level, there is the Government of Kenya's response to its drought situation, which is particularly commendable and worthy of further study by us to draw lessons which are applicable elsewhere.

Among the lessons being learned is the need for clear priorities and the efficient and effective channelling of scarce development resources. Here, the trade-off between short-term emergency aid and long-term development assistance is painfully clear. For Canada, as for all other donor institutions, a dollar spent on emergency aid is a dollar less for emergency development assistance, so it is important to use emergency assistance as much as possible in a developmentally sound manner.

Canada's aid agency, CIDA, has undertaken a significant, difficult shift of priorities over the last few years towards increasing our assistance to Africa. In food aid alone, over half of our bilateral programme of 365 million dollars is now directed towards Africa. The priority emphasis on agriculture and rural development also continues in our bilateral assistance to African countries.

In reorientating our programme, other traditional development partners in Asia and Latin America and the Caribbean are also making a real if indirect contribution to meeting the African food crisis, as we redirect our development resources from them to Africa. Equally, we. in Canada are coming to grips with longer-term solutions. In addition to the reorientation of our regular programmes, the Governemnt of Canada has recently announced a special fund of 18 million dollars for African rehabilitation under the Special Coordinator for African Famine Relief, David MacDonald. Canada is also paying particular attention, as I mentioned earlier, to the issues of timing and logistics.

Turning briefly to the Programme of Work for FAO, as we have spoken to many of these issues in other fora, I will not repeat our comments here. However, paragraph 47 does raise certain measures at the international level on which I would like to touch, and I will do so briefly.

First of all, the proposal for standby resources for the IEFR would mean a diminution of development assistance available from Canada under our budgetary procedures and is therefore not acceptable to my delegation. In our view the existing emergency procedures of the FAC when taken in conjunction with other procedures have proved adequate, although we would remark that they are always subject to ongoing review. Then there is the system of interim food

reserves and food aid insurance schemes; these require further study. For us, economic arguments have yet to be made for these proposals and the development of alternatives, as well as those for the extension of pre-positioning of stocks. We will be guided in our policy by the economic arguments developed for each proposal.

Finally, I turn to the issue of refocusing of the 1985 FAO Regular Programme: in support of rehabilitation requirements in Africa. Reprogramming of resources coupled with cuts in other areas has resulted in the freeing of 5 million dollars for drought area rehabilitation. We are curious to know what was cut from the original budget and therefore what was not done in 1984/85.

J. TCHICAYA (Congo): Ma delegation congolaise voudrait féliciter le Secrétariat pour cet intéressant document qu'il a préparé sur la situation alimentaire en Afrique et les mesures prises pourraient orienter les programmes de la FAO.

La présentation qui vient d'en être faite par MM. Islam et Lignon. en raison de leur clarté et des précisions qu'ils ont apporté vont sûrement nous faciliter les débats.

Monsieur le Président, il est un fait que l'Afrique, depuis quelque temps déjà, a pris conscience des pénuries alimentaires qui la guettaient et s'est rendue compte que des efforts concertés au niveau de la région étaient utiles pour mener ensemble la bataille pour l'autosuffisance individuelle et collective dans cette région. La déclaration de Freetown dont il est fait mention au paragraphe 1 du document CL 87/13 en constitue un témoignage éloquent. L'élaboration du plan alimentaire régional pour l'Afrique, avec son prolongement dans la partie agricole du plan d'action de Lagos, n'ont fait que renforcer cette prise de conscience collective, mais avouons-le, cela n'a pas suffi, car ici plus qu'ailleurs, les seules volontés des mêmes politiques ne suffisent pas pour changer le cours des choses. Seules les actions peuvent conduire à des résultats concrets. La dernière déclaration de Harare s'inscrit dans cet objectif et le fait que celle-ci ait été accueillie aussi favorablement dans tous les "fora" a pu susciter en nous quelque espoir car l'Afrique est consciente qu'elle doit accorder de plus en plus la priorité à la production agricole et vivrière, mais ces efforts se heurtent au sempiternel problème de l'inadéquation des moyens face aux objectifs visés.

Voilà pourquoi je partage ce qui est dit au paragraphe 5: "L'Afrique perd du terrain dans son combat pour la sécurité alimentaire". En fait, l'Afrique n'a pas que ce combat à livrer, elle en a plusieurs, liés les uns aux autres, et ce n'est sûrement pas l'aide alimentaire, aussi massive soit-elle, qui réglerait de manière définitive les questions relatives au développement, car la faim avant tout est un problème de pauvreté dans ce monde où règne l'abondance. Dans la solution par l'accroissement des revenus qui appelle à son tour la création de richesses et d'emplois, la meilleure manière d'aborder la question est donc, selon nous, de créer les conditions d'une certaine prospérité dans les pays, non pas en sollicitant indéfiniment l'aide alimentaire, mais en créant les conditions d'une meilleure exploitation des ressources naturelles. Nous estimons que cette question n'a jamais été abordée en profondeur, même après la Conférence mondiale de l'alimentation de 1974, puisque tous les engagements pris n'ont pas été tenus par les différents acteurs.

Nous espérons que l'étude que la FAO a entreprise et qui sera examinée à la Conférence régionale de Brazzaville, nous donnera une illustration éloquente. De même qu'on n'a pas cru aux premières alertes lancées depuis pratiquement 1982, et même avant, par le Directeur général, qui signalait grâce aux indications données par le système mondial d'information et d'alerte rapide, les menaces qui pesaient sur la situation alimentaire en Afrique, menaces qui se sont précisées en 1983 par la persistance de la sécheresse.

A cet égard, nous sommes reconnaissants au Directeur général de la FAO pour les appels au secours lancés en direction de la communauté internationale et sommes sensibles aux manifestations de solidarité que cette crise alimentaire, avec son lot de morts et de souffrances humaines, a déclenché à travers le monde. En effet, cela a eu pour résultat le doublement de la quantité d'aide alimentaire reçu par ces mêmes pays en 1983/84. Mais l'arrivée massive, dans les ports, de cette aide alimentaire a mis au grand jour la faiblesse de l'infrastructure routière de transport et de stockage des vivres, ces pays n'étant pas préparés à de telles opérations de grande ampleur, ce qui a occasionné des pertes matérielles et réduit l'efficacité de cette aide puisque les livraisons de vivres on atteint des retards considérables causant la perte de nombreuses vies humaines sans compter que toutes les aides promises n'ont pas encore été livrées.

Le fait que les conditions météorologiques se soient améliorées en 1985 nous redonnent espoir dans le court terme sans que nous soyons épargnés d'autres crises éventuelles de grande envergure. Le temps semble selon nous propice pour non seulement prendre des mesures propres à faire face à de telles éventualités mais encore à relancer l'agriculture pendant que l'aide d'urgence continue


Monsieur le Président, la crise africaine de ces dernières années a montré clairement qu'il faut en effet craindre que le phénomène d'accoutumance ne décourage les initiatives et paralyse l'action de la communauté internationale, ce qui aura pour effet de perpétuer la situation et rendre plus vulnérables les populations actuellement sinistrées et éviter une extension encore plus ample du


Aucun pays de cette région n'est à l'abri de telles situations, c'est pourquoi, l'action à entreprendre en Afrique doit être massive et viser le collectif des Etats de la région car tous sont porteurs des germes de la crise alimentaire puisqu'ils ne disposent pas des capacités infrastruc-turelles, financières et techniques pour assurer leur auto-suffisance alimentaire. Les efforts d'investissement dans ce secteur que déploient en ce moment certains Etats méritent le soutien actif de la communauté des donateurs. L'accent doit être porté sur des projets nationaux certes mais ceux-ci devront s'inscrire dans un cadre plus vaste sous-régional ou régional.

En attendant et au regard de l'ampleur des dégâts causés par les sécheresses successives nous ne pouvons que nous féliciter de l'initiative du Directeur Général de la FAO qui a réussi à mettre en application les directives que notre conseil lui avait données dans sa résolution 1/86.

Les petits projets de relance de l'agriculture dans les 21 pays gravement affectés par la sécheresse avaient déjà reçu le soutien de mon gouvernement le 29 mars dernier. Nous nous félicitons de ce qu'un grand nombre de pays tant développés qu'en développement se soient déjà offerts pour financer leur mise en oeuvre. Nous nous réjouissons à cet égard des mesures concrètes prises par les pays donateurs présents ici pour ce qui concerne les projets. La FAO devra veiller sur leur réalisation effective. Mais disons qu'il s'agit là d'une opération de sauvetage qui doit assurer le lien entre l'aide d'urgence et les projets d'investissement à long terme qui devront s'attacher à guérir le mal par la racine. C'est cette dernière action autant que la précédente qui sera décisive et sur laquelle sera testée la bonne volonté des uns et la détermination des autres, car c'est ainsi que ces pays pourront de moins en moins faire appel à l'aide alimentaire d'urgence.

En attendant nous aimerions que la FAO poursuivre toutes les démarches nécessaires afin que tous les projets de relance trouvent un financement et nous voudrions d'ores et déjà féliciter le Directeur général pour son initiative de mettre les ressources de l'Organisation à contribution notamment les 15 millions qui étaient destinés à être distribués entre nos Etats Membres et qui viennent renforcer l'enveloppe de 5 millions que le Conseil avait dégagés lors de sa dernière session.

Nous sommes aussi d'accord avec toutes les réorientations de programme de travail de 1985 et espérons que celles-ci contribueront à relancer l'agriculture des pays sinistrés sans provoquer trop de dommage aux autres pays tant africains que des régions soeurs, afin de les épargner des souffrances que connaissent à présent les pays frappés par les calamités naturelles dont on peut se prémunir.

Pour terminer, Monsieur le Président, nous souhaitons que vous reteniez que nous sommes actuellement en pourparlers avec un certain nombre de. délégations pour présenter un projet de résolution qui reflète une nouvelle fois nos préoccupations au sujet de la situation alimentaire africaine. Elle viendra compléter celle que nous avions initiée et fait adopter en novembre dernier et qui a servi au Directeur général pour entreprendre les vigoureuses actions que l'on sait et qui ont abouti à la présentation, les 30 janvier et 29 mars derniers d'un certain nombre de projets de réhabilitation de l'agriculture aux donateurs, il pourra être transmis au Comité de rédaction qui se chargera d'en affiner le texte.

A. ABDEL-MALEK (Liban): (langue originale arabe): Je voudrais faire quelques observations sur le point 5 de l'ordre du jour, à savoir la situation alimentaire de l'Afrique et j'aimerais tout d'abord féliciter M.Lignon et M. Islam de leurs exposés passionnants sur cette question très importante relative à la situation alimentaire en Afrique; ce continent qui nous préoccupe tous et qui exige de la part de la communauté internationale toute aide et toute assistance possible. A cet égard je ne saurais manquer de rappeler que la FAO a été la première organisation à donner déjà l'alarme en 1976 et il ne faudrait pas oublier que le Directeur général de l'Organisation depuis très longtemps avait invité la communauté internationale à aider le continent africain afin de relancer l'agriculture sur ce continent. Nous constatons également que le programme de relance agricole en Afrique est un des programmes ou projets les plus importants entrepris par cette organisation récemment et la réponse merveilleuse que nous avons enregistrée lors de la première réunion, fin janvier 1985 concernant l'Ethiopie et de la deuxième réunion tenue le 29 mars 1985 concernant 20 pays africains souffrant de la sécheresse, la réponse à l'appel lancé par le Directeur général de la part de la communauté internationale et des pays donateurs, nous réchauffe le coeur et nous remplit d'enthousiasme et d'optimisme et nous confirme une fois de plus que l'on ne peut ignorer un appel au secours.

Monsieur le Président, les informations données par le Secrétariat, montrent que la vague de sécheresse a tendance à se limiter et que les pluies dans l'Afrique de l'est et en Afrique australe permettront d'encourager la relance agricole dans cette région, mais malgré ce recul de la sécheresse, la famine n'est pas à son terme en Afrique. Les informations sur la famine que nous avons sur un pays qui nous est très cher, j'ai nommé le Soudan, sont très alarmantes; il en va de même de la situation au Mozambique, en Angola, au Tchad, en Ethiopie.

Le problème n'est pas simplement un problème de chute de pluies, de précipitations, il s'agit de faire parvenir cette aide à bon port, c'est-à-dire à ceux qui en ont le plus grand besoin plutôt que de voir cette assistance et ces produits s'empiler dans les ports sans aucun moyen, faute d'appui logistique, de les faire parvenir aux régions où sont concentrés les réfugiés, les affamés et les sans-abri , ceux, en d'autres termes, qui en ont le plus grand besoin.

C'est pourquoi j'estime que toute aide, toute assistance qui pourrait contribuer à régler ces problèmes logistiques serait la bienvenue et permettrait de remédier à cette situation qui se détériore jour après jour en Afrique, A cet égard, j'estime que les informations de M. Lignon sur la relance de l'agriculture en Afrique sont très pertinentes. Il faudrait, en tait, réorienter les programmes de travail de l'Organisation afin de donner une priorité aux projets et programmes visant à augmenter le potentiel et la capacité des pays africains eux-mêmes, leur permettant ainsi d'augmenter leur production agricole et d'accroître leur productivité.

Ma délégation approuve entièrement cette orientation. Le document présenté par M. Islam traite du problème agricole et alimentaire en Afrique. Sous tous ses angles, M. Islam, dans ce document, su diagnostiquer le mal et donner les solutions et les remèdes nécessaires, mais il a également attiré notre attention sur le fait qu'il ne suffit pas de compter sur la générosité des pays donateurs mais qu'il faudrait également que les pays bénéficiaires, ceux qui reçoivent cette assistance, fassent preuve de volonté d'action. En ce sens que les bénéficiaires devraient développer leur capacité de faire face à ces situations exceptionnelles, par exemple la situation de sécheresse; il faudrait également que ces pays aient la volonté et le pouvoir de développer leur agriculture par leurs propres moyens avec l'assistance de la Communauté internationale. Le programme de relance agricole en Afrique tel qu'il nous est soumis par la FAO est tout à fait opportun et nous fondons beaucoup d'espoir sur l'étude approfondie qui sera présentée par l'Organisation lors de la prochaine Conférence régionale en Afrique; car une telle étude va traiter les racines mêmes de ce problème et va établir des solutions à long terme, comme cela figure dans la dernière partie du document présenté par M. Islam.

Permettez-moi de dire au nom de la délégation libanaise combien nous sommes reconnaissants et fiers de la réponse donnée, à l'appel pour aider le continent africain,par les pays avancés et nantis, mais aussi par d'autres pays comme l'Inde et la Chine. Il s'agit là d'une illustration merveilleuse, d'un exemple sans précédent de la solidarité internationale entre pays nantis et pays pauvres.

J'aimerais, en conclusion, dire qu'un tel geste permet de se tourner vers l'avenir avec beaucoup d'optimisme. Je crois que l'avenir n'est pas aussi sombre que certains le présentent et je suis très fier de voir se matérialiser la coopération internationale au sein de l'Organisation des Nations Unies, au sein de laquelle la FAO se dédie avec dévouement à la cause de l'alimentation et de l'agriculture. Je suis sûr que la FAO se montrera à la hauteur de sa noble tâche, comme elle l'a déjà fait dans le passé, et permettra de promouvoir le développement agricole et rural dans les pays du tiers monde.

M. BALLA SY (Sénégal): Monsieur le Président, je vous remercie de m'avoir donné la parole pour me permettre de vous livrer quelques impressions sur ce thème qui est particulièrement important aussi bien pour la communauté internationale que pour le continent africain.

Le document que nous étudions me plonge dans un empire sentimental on ne peut plus confus. En effet, l'examen de ce document provoque en moi des sentiments qui alternent l'angoisse, l'espoir et la confiance.

Angoisse, parce que les analyses pertinentes faites par le Secrétariat que je voudrais chaleureusement féliciter à cette occasion, montrent la gravité de la situation alimentaire en Afrique. Les problèmes soulevés par l'acheminement de l'aide et sa distribution rapide sont très préoccupants et méritent d'être davantage cernés dans le sens du renforcement des moyens logistiques dans les pays concernés.

Cette situation m'amène à évoquer la question de la Réserve alimentaire internationale d'urgence et des réserves intérimaires. D'aucuns disent que les derniers événements douloureux survenus récemment en Afrique ont prouvé que la communauté internationale peut à tout moment faire face à n'importe quelle crise alimentaire. Je dois reconnaître que cela est exact, mais je dois aussi souligner que les pays donateurs ont en effet consenti des efforts et des moyens considérables pour secourir les populations africaines. Cependant, l'effet de surprise et l'ampleur du drame vécu ont mis en exergue certains aspects dont on doit tenir compte. Combien de vies humaines auraient pu être sauvées si des lacunes logistiques telles que l'engorgement des ports, l'insuffisance du réseau routier et le manque de moyens de transport ne s'étaient signalées avec autant d'acuité.

Cela ne suffirait-il pas à faire admettre que l'augmentation de la RAIU et la mise en place des réserves intérimaires dans les zones menacées seraient des mesures de sécurité irremplaçables. En effet, cela nous fait admettre qu'il vaut mieux prévenir que guérir et c'est là justement le sens profond des propositions déjà faites par le Secrétariat dans le sens d'une restructuration de la RAIU et de la mise en place des réserves intérimaires.

De toutes ces considérations nous devons également tirer d'autres leçons.

En premier lieu, la solution de la crise en Afrique, nous le savons tous, dépendra essentiellement de la relance de l'agriculture. C'est à ce point de vue que les actions de la FAO, dans le sens des initiatives du Directeur général et de ses collaborateurs, méritent une grande attention et un soutien total de la communauté internationale. Les réactions, dont vient de nous parler M. Lignon avec autant de clarté, de certains organismes intergouvernementaux et non gouvernementaux et de certains pays donateurs aux programmes de la FAO pour 21 pays d'Afrique, en particulier l'Ethiopie, sont des réactions louables qui méritent d'être soulignées avec espoir.

Je disais qu'il y a une sorte d'angoisse qui m'a été procurée par cette situation alimentaire dramatique. Mais il y a tout de même de l'espoir, je viens de le signaler, qui est dû à ces réactions très positives de la communauté internationale aux programmes de la FAO, et l'espoir que cette initiative sera suivie par d'autres pays dans le futur.

Je voudrais également à cette occasion reprendre une conclusion de M. Lignon qui disait que la préparation de ce programme ne signifie pas que la FAO se désintéresse de l'Afrique. Je crois que cette précision n'était pas utile. Elle n'a pas de sens profond parce que la préparation de ce programme signifie très clairement, qu'on le pense ou qu'on ne le pense pas, que la FAO ne fait que donner une priorité à l'Afrique, et nous souhaitons que cela dure encore. Je suis persuadé que toute la communauté internationale ne manquera pas de reconnaître que bien que l'aide alimentaire soit nécessaire, celle-ci devrait non seulement s'orienter dans le sens de son intégration au développement, et particulièrement dans la mise à la disposition des nations touchées des moyens de production pour leur permettre d'être autosuffisantes et de produire assez pour les populations qui relèvent de leur juridiction.

La deuxième leçon est liée à l'observation précédente, c'est-à-dire que l'aide alimentaire devra prendre une nouvelle direction pour s'intégrer davantage aux efforts de développement. Aussi ne puis-je que souhaiter que les projets de développement financés par le PAM qui n'ont cessé de diminuer au cours de ces dernières années soient au contraire renforcés.

La troisième leçon est que le transfert des technologies, la formation, la recherche scientifique, la sélection, la conservation et l'utilisation rationnelle des ressources phytogénétiques devraient demeurer notre principale préoccupation.

Je pense que la communauté internationale, les pays donateurs et les organismes de financement en particulier, ainsi que la FAO, ont désormais définitivement pris l'engagement irréversible de donner une priorité à l'Afrique. Cela est d'autant plus réjouissant et réconfortant que les pays membres de la FAO dans leur intégralité, malgré les difficultés diverses, sont également solidaires dans cette action.

En effet, dans aucune instance internationale, cette priorité ne souffre de contestation. Au contraire, les bonnes intentions sont si nombreuses que leur coordination pose un problème. Pour éviter qu'il y ait une dispersion des efforts dont l'Afrique n'a point besoin, on devrait reconnaître que la FAO est, quoi que l'on puisse dire, depuis sa création, l'organisation spécialisée la mieux armée, la plus aguerrie pour jouer le rôle de chef de file. Notre devoir est de le reconnaître, de l'aider sans complaisance en étant conscient de ses mérites, en soulignant ses erreurs et en lui prodiguant des recommandations utiles.

Je ne saurais terminer sans appuyer une idée à laquelle ma délégation s'associe activement et qui a déjà été soulignée par M. l'Ambassadeur du Congo. Il s'agit du projet de résolution que notre instance devrait exceptionnellement envisager dans le cadre de ses présents travaux. Compte tenu des difficultés que traverse l'Afrique qui, j'en suis sûr, préoccupent tous les pays ici présents, je crois que dans aucun de nos comités il n'y a eu de divergence sur la question. Ce sont seulement les moyens de réaliser les objectifs qui ont divisé les délégations, mais les objectifs ont toujours été les mêmes. Les bonnes intentions n'ont jamais manqué. Il s'agit simplement de déclarer solennellement à l'occasion de nos travaux, dans le document qui sera soumis au Comité de rédaction pour son affinement et sa finalisation, cet engagement qui ne fait défaut au niveau d'aucune délégation ici présente.

M. SUBRAMANIAN (India): I take this opportunity to thank the Director-General for a very clear analysis of the food situation in Africa. I would draw particular attention to paragraph 7 of document CL 87/13 which emphasizes the need for strengthening the infrastructure and the logistic support for delivering food aid to the needy in those countries. India has in its own humble way tried to play a part in shipping some of the grain required. I know that the needs are large, and contributions made by each one of us could perhaps be said to be a very humble contribution, but I believe that all the contributions that we make should reach the needy in time and I am sure that we all, in collaboration, will try to see what can be done to improve the logistics support for that aid to reach them in time. We share this concern expressed in the document, and we would like to do all we can to find better ways of ensuring that supplies arrive in time.

Secondly, I would also like to draw attention to paragraphs 34 to 37 of this document which really highlight the components of the rehabilitation programme - mainly, the support from technology, the support from extension and related support services, and the need for greater use of inputs without which the fall in yields which has been noted in paragraph 3 4 cannot be reversed.

I think it is in this context that I would like to commend our Director-General and through him therefore the Secretariat for an excellent report which is reflected in paragraphs 55 to 57 of this Valuable document. As mentioned in paragraph 55, the meeting which took place on March 29, 1985 was an historic event in the field of international cooperation for setting up a new international agricultural order, Mr Chairman, to which you refer to. I think the work done in identifying no less than 194 specific projects for the twenty countries'rehabilitation programmes is a task which needs to be fully commended by this Council. I believe this set of projects in fact reflects a certain concern for integrating various aspects with which the FAO has been concerned. I think it reflects a concern for increasing the employment, providing food security and increasing agricultural productivity. It seeks Mr Chairman, in the African context, and it might be equally relevant elsewhere in varying degrees, to modernize agriculture, transport and communications. I think the need is to coordinate the effort whether national, bilateral or multilateral, and thus the suggestion made in paragraph 57 of this document that FAO could play a critical role in assisting the various agencies, both the donors as well as the recipients, in monitoring the effective use of the resources provided for achieving this tremendous task.

I am very happy to mention that we would particularly like to emphasise the technical cooperation component of this programme, and there is scope for mutual cooperation amongst all of us, particularly in the areas like the organization of farmers and their exposure to specific productivity programmes, the organization of improved seed supplies and agro-economic expertise, the provision of agricultural extension and support services. In all of this we might be able to make a humble contribution to our brothers and sisters for getting together for organizing agricultural management and fulfilling the tasks ahead.

I would like to take this opportunity, Mr Chairman, to salute the efforts made by our brothers and sisters in Africa. In referring to the role of aid I do not want to underestimate the noble, the valiant efforts made by our friends in Africa to face the situation and to rehabilitate agriculture in an orderly and in an effective manner. We think but for this effort from Africa, all that we are doing in our humble way would not be achieving the results that it is showing, and I would take this opportunity to salute the African countries in their march ahead and I would like to pledge our support in this noble endeavour.

In conclusion, Mr Chairman, I would like to bring to your notice that India, as part of the non-aligned Movement, has tried to enroll the collective efforts of the non-aligned Movement. The meeting of the non-aligned coordinating Bureau took place in New Delhi in April and I am very happy that FAO has welcomed this initiative of the non-aligned Movement for joining in the task of assisting the African countries by various supporting systems including the adoption of the projects which have been listed by the FAO. I hope that in response to this appeal which has been endorsed by the FAO, members of the non-aligned Group will be providing, either directly or through FAO, the necessary support in respect of identifying the projects in which they feel they could work together with the recipient nations.

I would like to congratulate the FAO on their offer of assistance in coordinating this effort in various roles such cost sharing of the supporting services, provision of FAO expertise and monitoring of the effectiveness of the technical collaboration arrangements, and I think it is in this manner that nationally and internationally, through the technical support of the FAO, we could ensure that whatever national or international inputs are going into this great task of reconstructing agriculture in this great continent will succeed, and I am sure this Council will endorse all the national and international efforts as well as the involvement of the FAO in this great march ahead.

Let me thank you for this opportunity I have of associating myself and India with this great task, and let me pledge our country and all our colleagues in the non-aligned Movement to make our humble contribution in the fulfilment of this noble objective.

Ms. M. FENWICK (United States of America): I know my delegation has already welcomed your arrival here and told you how happy we are to see you, but I would like to add personally that I share that. Also to the Director-General, our delegation has expressed its appreciation for his statement - and I especially - because as always I find in the Director-General's remarks that heartfelt concern for those who suffer, without that our work here loses so much of its impetus and spirit. And to the Secretariat, thanks also.

I am always stimulated to say more but I like to be brief; I try to keep to three minutes and I hope I will, but my colleagues interest me so and they say things that are so interesting. A word we hear all the time is "protectionism" and I think it might be some comfort to my colleagues, although it certainly is not to us, to know that we have a trade deficit of over one hundred billion dollars - a staggering deficit with Japan and a deficit with Europe. But the biggest of all our deficits is with the rest of the world, 38 billion dollars, not including Japan or Europe. I think for sub-Sahara Africa it is 9,000 million dollars alone. This is something I just thought might be of comfort to some here who speak of protectionism, which I may say I am very much against and always have been.

I would like to speak also about two programmes that we have for development, especially for Africa. The African Economic Policy Reform Programme is going to give cash grants - this is the proposal - for some 500 million dollars to be given out over a series of years to those nations whose policies are designed to increase the production in their country; marketing, pricing, all the things that we know about - a practical programme. That will be for 1986. It is a proposal not yet in operation.

In 1985 the US total - and this includes also the Caribbean basin where we are trying to do some helpful work - is some 755 million dollars. That would be for 1985.

Now leaving figures which I never enjoy very much, I would like to speak about what some of my colleagues have said. I thought the intervention of the Government of Czechoslovakia was most interesting. So many years, and we are worse off than we were; that is surely something that should be brought to our attention. Also, perhaps because I too am a grandparent, I would like to echo the concerns of the Government of the Philippines concerning the environment, and I think FAO's work in forestry particulary has been significant in the protection of the environment, and of course small catchment basins for the rain water, which are not only environmental but of great use to the small farmers. And so my colleagues who know me know I come to the subject that I care about the most, the small farmer, the smallholder farmer. Why does everybody look at China and India? Why, because they offer such startling examples. China, suddenly is now the biggest wheat producer in the world. As one important Chief of State the other day said, speaking of his own country's difficult agriculture and economy, the philosophic base of a policy is the determinant, and that is what has happened I believe with the changes that have been made in China. Also perhaps it accounts for some of India's success where we have a million independent milk farmers in the Annan Project. The heavy hand of Government does not enter. The average herd is five buffaloes, a million members in the Annan Project. Or you take the agriculture of India itself, 70 percent of the land that is cultivated in India, 2 hectares or less. This does not entail great big tractors; this is what Nehru was talking about when he said "What is progress? It is giving a man who has a wooden plough the opportunity to get himself a metal plough". We have to learn from what works. Now I am not anti-intellectual, and I do not mean to suggest that. I know we need research for the tetse fly, for the larger grain borer, for the mealy bug, for all these curses of Africa, and that research obviously will have to be done in laboratories and by experienced people, but we ought to look around; ask Zimbabwe how good is the Master Farmer Scheme. Look what they have produced on the small farms in Zimbabwe, the Master Farmer Scheme. The one I visited had over 50 percent women enrolled. Lots of things are working. FAO invented a marvellous oven so that the women of West Africa who smoke the fish and control their own income can work more efficiently and keep an income all the year round. These are the things that really count. It reminds me of my dear friend Mr Palmer from Sierra Leone. "What every village needs is a vivid demonstration of something that works". There are so many of these - the blacksmith training that FAO is now doing. Those blacksmiths remind me of Ford starting in the bicycle world! Why not. Training people making parts for these machines. We have to realise what is involved here. Small businesses, independent people. As the Chairman said, the rich are very seldom hungry. The other name for hunger is poverty, We must encourage the local farmer to sell for cash, buy what the wants without anybody ordering him around, produce what he can produce. I met a wonderful African when I was in West Africa this year and we were talking about the rural poor, and he said "what the rural poor need is not relief, it is release, freedom to do what they know how to do". Listen to them because they often know a lot more than we do Serve them; learn from them.

I would also like to speak of the aquaculture project. I saw a wonderful aquaculture project in Zambia. Here were independent farmers digging their own ponds. Two experts were there for 600 farmers. They were advised, "You have not enough water. You have not the kind of land that will hold water." So you go ahead and dig your pond and they tell you how to go down to the bank and borrow $900. I have not time to tell you the details, but 300 of them are in a voluntary cooperative making money. They are going to hire their own people if they need any.

All this adds up to what we are here for, caring as we do. We all do, or we would not be here, hoping to be useful.

I must draw your attention here to what I consider to be a very beautiful, important contribution that an African government and country has made. I am talking of Cameroon, and its President, H.E. Paul Biya, and his people, who have made that little port of Douala the port of hope for the people of Chad, accepting food at tremendous difficulties for Cameroon and allowing that food to go into Chad where people are starving. That is a gesture of human solidarity and caring and compassion which is a model, and I would like to bring that to the attention of this council.

Otto FRIIS (Denmark): Allow me to make two brief comments on document CL 87/13, which in the view of my delegation contains a comprehensive assessment of the current African food crisis, which is certainly a serious one. I have listened carefully to what was said earlier this morning about the situation and I will not go into any detail about the grave concern which the situation is causing also in Denmark. But I think it is important to keep in mind the value of keeping an updated picture of the situation.

I would like to take this opportunity to express my Government's support for FAO's Global Information and Early Warning System. Through its close monitoring and reporting we believe that the system has played an important role in mobilizing a timely and coordinated response by the donor-community to the African crisis. We would like to encourage FAO to continue its current endeavours to further improve the analytical framework and reporting of the system.

Secondly, we find that the information contained in the document testifies to the structural nature of at any rate part of the African food crisis. Consequently it underlines the need for a close integration of short-term emergency relief and long-term development assistance, of which the FAO is certainly aware. This integration seems to us to be of great importance since we otherwise see the risk of making the African countries dependent on emergency assistance, particularly in the form of food aid. In our opinion this could endanger their long-term development objectives. We are certainly aware that such an integration may be hard to achieve given the current institutional division of labour within the UN system, where the World Bank provides structural assistance to the agricultural sector, the FAO provides medium-term structural rehabilitation programmes and the UN Office of African Emergency Operations provides short-term emergency relief. So we urge the various UN Agencies involved to coordinate their efforts in combatting the immediate effects and the structural causes of the African crisis.

Y.A. HAMDI (Egypt) (original language Arabic): Thank you, Mr Chairman. I should like first of all to express our pleasure at seeing you once more, and I should like to congratulate the Vice-Chairmen on their election. We also wish to congratulate the Director-General on his important statement, and we wish to thank Professor Islam and Mr Lignon for their introduction to this item.

The problems of food and agriculture faced by Africa have been very clearly identified in this document. These problems are multi-faceted, such as the continued decline in self-sufficiency in the continent, decrease in per caput food production, the problem of drought, the shortage of agricultural inputs such as fertilizers, seeds and technology, and man made emergencies.

The document has laid down guidelines to get prepared to face these emergencies at the national and the international levels. We fully approve these guidelines. We would in this respect commend the efforts made by the Organization in order to contribute in the implementation of these guidelines in cooperation with the governments concerned. In fact the Organization has taken the initiative in studying and preparing rehabilitation projects for the agricultural sector in 26 affected countries in consultation with the countries concerned.

These projects were so designed as to ensure rapid execution and considerable impacts in a short period and they aim at a large number of producers and inhabitants. They include technical assistance and training programmes and the provision of agricultural inputs such as seeds, fertilizers and pesticides. The Organization has appealed to the international community to contribute to these efforts. We are pleased to hear today that a number of countries and non-governmental organizations have expressed their readiness to finance these projects. We thank these countries

and organizations which have responded so favourably to this appeal and which have been listed by Mr Lignon.

In this respect we should like to appeal to the other governments and organizations to contribute to this programme in favour of the African countries, which would lay down the cornerstone of agricultural development in these countries and would also contribute to laying down the basis for self-reliance and self-sufficiency in the long-term.

We would also like to support the Director-General in allocating $200 million from the Regular Programme and within the framework of the Technical Cooperation Programme, which besides those contributions from other States and organizations, would he used in financing these projects.

In conclusion we should like to announce our country's preparedness to contribute to the training programmes regarding human resources in Africa and also to provide Egyptian expertise in different fields of agriculture at the bilateral level and through the Organization,


2. Election of three Vice-Chairmen and Designation of the Chairman and Members of the Drafting Committee (continued)
2. Election de trois Vice-Présidents et nomination du Président et des membres du Comité de rédaction (suite)
2. Elección de tres Vicepresidentes y nombramiento del Presidente y de los miembros del Comité de Redacción (continuación)

CHAIRMAN: Regarding the Drafting Committee, you will remember that yesterday the Chairman of the Group of 77 announced that Congo, Malawi, Philippines, India, Argentina, Mexico, Lebanon and Egypt, these eight names were mentioned by consensus. The Chairman of the OECD Group has informed me of Australia, Italy, Spain and the United States of America. In all therefore there will be twelve members. These constitute the Drafting Committee. We ought to have a Chairman of the Drafting Committee. I give the floor to the delegate of the Ivory Coast.

D. YOMAN (Côte-d'Ivoire): Au nom du groupe africain et en notre qualité de pays assurant la présidence de ce groupe nous avons l'honneur de présenter ici à l'élection par le Conseil lui-même la candidature de l'Ambassadeur du Congo, au poste de président du Comité de rédaction de la quatre-vingt-septième session. Cette suggestion, croyons-nous, qui n'est pas une première dans la pratique de notre Conseil, devrait à notre avis requérir le consensus de tous les honorables délégués présents dans cette salle. Le Groupe africain s'honore de cette candidature d'un de ses membres éminent qui est un homme d'expérience. Son Excellence. l'Ambassadeur Tchicaya, en effet, est un diplomate avisé mais également et surtout un agronome ayant assumé de hautes fonctions dans l'administration de son pays. Il connaît parfaitement la FAO et le fonctionnement de ses organes. Il a déjà assumé avec succès les charges de Vice-Président du Conseil, de Président du Groupe des 77 et bien sûr a participé à de nombreux comités de rédaction ici même. Du fait de son sens de la mesure, de sa compétence sur les questions alimentaires et agricoles, de sa disponibilité et son dévouement, nous sommes d'avance certains qu'avec l'aide des autres membres du Comité de rédaction le rapport final de notre session reflétera d'une façon claire et responsable les débats de notre réunion. Au nom du groupe africain, nous souhaitons, encore une fois, que cette proposition reçoive l'accord de notre Conseil.

L. ARIZA HIDALGO (Cuba): Queremos, Señor Presidente, apoyar en todas sus partes la proposición que ha hecho la distinguida representación de Costa de Marfil en la persona del Embajador Tchicaya para presidir el Grupo de Redacción. Creemos que es difícil repetir lo que ha planteado el colega de Costa de Marfil sobre las cualidades, capacidad y dinamismo del Sr. Tchicaya; por lo tanto, creernos que puede convertirse en un gran Presidente de un Consejo que necesita un buen Presidente del Comité de Redacción.

Sra. M. RUIZ ZAPATA (México): Yo estoy de acuerdo con la propuesta del Embajador Tchicaya ya que será un excelente Presidente; pero yo me quería referir a otra cuestión. Me parece que los nombres que dió usted por América Latina y el Caribe están equivocados y podría usted dejarlo abierto y en la tarde le comunicaría la Presidente de nuestro Grupo, la Embajadora de Venezuela, los nombres definitivos.

Dra. M. FERMIN GOMEZ (Venezuela): Dice bien la señora representante de México cuando indica que hay un error en la nominación de los miembros para el Comité de Redacción; en el Grupo de los 77 habíamos escogido en vez de México a Colombia para constituir el Comité de Redacción; así que Colombia pasará a formar parte del Grupo de Redacción en vez de México.

CHAIRMAN: That means that for the Drafting Committee we have the following: Congo, Malawi, Philippines, India, Argentina, Colombia, Lebanon, Egypt, Australia, Italy, Spain and the United States of America. If Council agrees, we will condemn Ambassador Tchicaya to sleepless nights and dinnerless evenings, because he will have to work very hard. Let us wish him well in his new task.


The Director-General reminds me that the members of the Committee will also have to work very hard in the evenings so we must thank them as well.

The meeting rose at 12.30 hours.
La seance est levée à 12h30.
Se levanta la sesión a las 12.30 horas.

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