15-19 February 2016, Thimphu, Bhutan
In accordance with Article VI-1 of the FAO Constitution, the FAO Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific (RAP) organized the twenty-sixth session of the Asia and Pacific Commission on Agricultural Statistics (APCAS 26), in Thimphu, 15-19 February 2016 at the kind invitation of the Royal Government of Bhutan.
APCAS 26 welcomed 76 participants, including 56 from 19 APCAS member countries, two from observer countries, 16 from FAO and sub-regional organizations like SAARC (South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation) and the ASEAN Food Security Information System (AFSIS).
The Asia and Pacific Commission on Agricultural Statistics (APCAS) is a statutory body of FAO. APCAS brings together senior statistics officials from FAO member countries of the Asia and Pacific region, who are responsible for the development of agricultural statistics in their respective countries. They review the developments in their agricultural statistical systems since the last session and exchange ideas with experts from FAO and other organizations on the state of food and agricultural statistics in the region. FAO uses this occasion to inform the member countries about its activities in during the preceding biennium, particularly in Asia and the Pacific region.
Membership of the Commission
As per the Statute of the Commission, the membership of the Commission is open to all Member Nations of FAO and Associate Members whose territories are situated wholly or partly in the Asia and the Pacific Region or who are responsible for the international relations of any non-self-governing territories in the Region. As of March 2016, 26 countries are members of APCAS, namely Afghanistan, Australia, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, People’s Rep. of China, Fiji, France, India, Indonesia, Islamic Rep. of Iran, Japan, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, New Zealand, Pakistan, Philippines, Republic of Korea, Sri Lanka, Thailand, United Kingdom, United States of America and Viet Nam. Mongolia officially joined APCAS 26 during the session.
FAO member nations interested in becoming a member of the Commission may contact the APCAS Secretary for guidance.
The Commission heard presentation on 48 technical documents from attending countries and delegates. FAO opened the session with a report on its activities since the last Session and the actions taken on the recommendation of APCAS25. This Session discussed the monitoring framework on the Sustainable Development Goals, concluding with a recommendation that FAO take the lead on setting standards for the SDG Global Indicators, particularly for new indicators identified by the Inter Agency Expert Group, as well as capacity development for member countries to fulfil their reporting obligations. The Commission endorsed the establishment of a Global Commission on Agricultural Statistics as an important FAO Governing body to influence the development of agricultural statistics. The Session took note of the new guidelines for the World Census of Agriculture 2020, which will be rolled-out through scheduled regional workshops in 2016. Recent statistical developments in other domains like fishery, statistics, economic accounting and greenhouse gasses were also reviewed.