9 December 2003, Rome -- The Federal Republic of Germany has agreed to provide 8.6 million euros for development projects to be carried out by FAO next year, the UN agency said in a statement today.

Germany will mainly finance several projects in Afghanistan and a project for HIV/AIDS affected children in Lesotho and Malawi.

In Afghanistan, returning refugees and internally displaced people will receive vegetable or pulses seeds as well as tools and fertilizer. Priority will be given to women.

The project aims to assist in resettling returnees, increase food production and improve the livelihoods of vulnerable households.

Another project will focus on training for Afghan women and men who are members of village groups for poultry and dairy production.

Working with local farmers, FAO has set up milk collection centres and started poultry production for women in several Afghan cities. The project will help to extend these activities.

It will also assist the Afghan authorities to support livestock development through a better animal disease monitoring system. In addition, veterinary health services will be strengthened.

Germany will also support the formulation of a medium-term national food security strategy. A comprehensive and user-friendly food security surveillance database will be established.

In Lesotho and Malawi, two southern African countries with high levels of HIV/AIDS, a project will protect and improve food and nutrition security of orphans and HIV/AIDS affected children.

Another project will promote conservation agriculture in Kenya.

Projects on the implementation of the Right to Food will be carried out in Brazil, Honduras and Sierra Leone.

In 2002, German trust funds amounted to around 8.5 million euros.
Erwin Northoff
Information Officer, FAO
(+39) 06 570 53105