D. Annual reports of member governments
(under Article XI, FAO Constitution)
The Conference has considered the dual purpose of the Article XI reports: (a) to provide the means for member governments to report on the progress made toward the aims of FAO and on action taken by governments on Conference recommendations, and (b) to provide information for the annual Program Review.
The Conference -
Considering that a number of advantages could thus be gained,
- Recommends that information on program and targets, or forward estimates, be obtained separately from Article XI reports as part of the regular work of the Economics, Marketing, and Statistics Division through correspondence and direct consultation with governments. This will permit greater flexibility in obtaining the information and will remove one of the principal complicating features of the existing Article XI questionnaire.
On account of the basic importance to the annual review of information on programs, targets, and forward estimates,
The Conference -
- Recommends that all governments reply promptly and as fully as possible to such inquiries as FAO may make.
Bearing in mind the views expressed in Commission I on the questionnaire for Article XI reports, the Conference has attempted to provide a simpler outline than that used last year, and one which permits greater flexibility in preparing the report. This should enable governments to adjust their reports to varying conditions in different countries. The Conference hopes that more countries will be able under this arrangement to send in complete reports and get them in on time.
The Conference -
- Recommends that the questionnaire consist of four parts, as follows.
A. General Position and Significance of Food and Agriculture
This is intended to be a general introduction and it can be brief. It affords an opportunity to bring out particularly significant features of the general situation in the country.
B. Progress and Developments in Food and Agriculture
e. Rural Welfare
f. Marketing and Distribution
There are no further subheads in this section, and the government is free to take up topics in whatever order it wishes. The principal purpose of this section is to bring out all significant new developments in special fields during the period reported on, but governments may use their own discretion in developing background material, including whatever statistics are necessary to fill out the picture.
C. Actions Taken by Member Governments on Selected Conference Recommendations
The Director-General should prepare for consideration of the first session of the Council in 1950 a short list of important recommendations adopted by the Conference. From this list the Council should make a selection, and governments should be asked to report the action they have taken on these recommendations.
D. Review of Selected Topics
Because in many fields significant changes appear only gradually over a period of years, an opportunity should be given for governments to report less frequently on such matters. The Conference believes that governments should be asked to provide a fairly full survey on two specified topics in each report. The topics chosen will change from one period to another and any given subject will be taken up again only after a lapse of a number of years.
- Recommends that the Director-General prepare a carefully thought-out list of special topics for use in reports over a series of years (together with a few questions to be asked on major aspects of such topics) for consideration by the Council and that the Council determine a schedule of subjects and the order in which they should be asked. Any such list would' of course, be subject to review if developments in subsequent years should bring some other subject into greater prominence. The aim of selecting these topics should be to facilitate the work of FAO in such fields as come into prominence at Conference sessions.
Examples of topics the Conference has in mind are: The Organization of Extension and Advisory Services; Co-operation in Agriculture; Control of Animal Diseases; Grassland Management; Water Conservation and Management; Soil Conservation; Storage Facilities and Methods; Nutritional Status and Policies; and Agricultural Price Structure and Price Policies.
The Conference further -
- Recommends that a proposed outline for Article XI reports, within the above framework, be forwarded to all members of the Council in time for consideration at the first session of the Council in 1950.
REFERENCE LIST, WORLD REVIEW AND OUTLOOK
The State of Food and Agriculture, 1949 (C49/9)
Food and Agricultural Targets and Outlook for 1950/51 (C49/23)
Interim Report on Trends in International Trade in Agricultural Commodities (CL6/4)
Report of the Latin American Pre-Conference Regional Meeting (C49/I/5)
Report of the Near East Pre-Conference Regional Meeting (C49/I/6)
Report of the Pre-Conference Meeting in Asia and the Far East (C49/I/7)
Report of the Regional Pre-Conference Meeting in Europe (C49/I/8)
Recommendations and Suggestions Made by the Pre-Conference Regional Meetings (C49/I/9)
Report on International Investment and Financing Facilities (C49/16)
Report on World Commodity Problems (C49/10)