"For trade measures to become fully effective, they need to be accompanied by the right investment policies, i.e. policies that allow farmers in developing countries to respond faster and fuller to the new trade opportunities. Aid for trade could be critical in helping the poor reap the benefits of freer trade."
18 February 2010, Organisation for an International Geographical Indications Network (OriGIn), Geneva
Opening Remarks, GIs and sustainable development
Presentation of the FAO Guide “Linking people, places and products – A Guide for promoting quality linked to geographical origin and sustainable GIs”
''GIs serve a multifunctional purpose. They not only generate more value but they also ensure better quality, protection of indigenous knowledge, culture and tradition and bring more investment. Many successful developing countries are already giving a great deal of attention to this and developing their GIs. ’’
18-23 January 2010, WHO, Geneva
Comments on Food Safety, WHO 126th Session of the Executive Board
Informed the Executive Board on issues of common interest between WHO and FAO to increase synergies and avoid duplication.
''Collaboration between the health and agriculture sectors should further enhance the effectiveness of food control systems and improve consumer protection.’’
2010 (forthcoming), ICC/Evian Group, Geneva
Peace and Prosperity through Global Trade - Agriculture and Trade, Joint publication of the Evian Group and the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) (under publication)
Agricultural trade has yielded much less benefit than it has potential for. To reduce hunger and poverty in poor rural areas, there is a need for greater investment in those areas so that agriculture incomes can become comparable to those in other sectors. This article also discusses major distortions which agriculture trade currently suffers from and argues that the Doha Round will be a step forward to rectifying some of those distortions.
“… more emphasis has to be placed on achieving long term goals rather than merely reacting to emergencies.”
14 December 2009, UNCTAD, Geneva
From Crisis to Security: The role of international cooperation in bolstering sustainable agriculture, UNCTAD Multi-Year Expert Meeting: The role of international cooperation in bolstering sustainable agriculture
Following the recent World Food Summit in Rome, the salient features of the Conference are shared with the participants of the UNCTAD meeting with an emphasis on three issues: the need to eradicate hunger as soon as possible; reversing the decline in investment in agriculture; and improving governance of global food issues.
“… world leaders seemed to accept that the root cause of hunger and malnutrition is underinvestment in agriculture in developing countries. Unfortunately investment at the international level as well as the domestic level has been decreasing.”
9-10 November 2009, Chamonix Mont Blanc, France
The Role of the Social Economy in Feeding the Planet, 4th Mont Blanc Meetings on the theme Feeding the Planet: What Role Can the Social Economy Play?
This presentation, in advance of the World Summit on Food Security, gives a general overview of the food security problem, examines the current situation and looks at the key challenges in the future.
“…this year for the first time in human history, the number of chronically hungry people passed the one billion mark.”
30 September 2009, WTO Public Forum, Geneva
Food Security and Sustainable Agriculture, WTO Public Forum Session 34: How Food Security and Sustainable Agriculture will change the post-crisis Agenda of the WTO (Speaking points)
The theme of this year’s WTO Public Forum is “Global Solutions to Global Problems.” But will the existing WTO trade rules conflict with investment in food security or meeting climate change goals?
“The FAO would like to have trade policies which are conducive to fostering food security for all.”
23 September 2009, IDEAS Centre, Geneva
Negotiating Mechanisms at the GATT/WTO, Negotiating mechanisms, the various interest groups and their functioning (Presentation for senior Vietnamese trade negotiators)
Drawing on his own experiences as Pakistan’s ambassador to the WTO, Dr. Manzoor Ahmad outlines the history of negotiating alliances at the GATT/WTO, examples of coalitions and the pros and cons of being a member of a coalition.
“Working together in negotiating alliances is like having a trade union. While it does bring extreme positions, it also makes negotiations easier to handle.”
31 August 2009, WMO, Geneva
Climate Prediction and Information for Decision-making, Third World Climate Conference WCC-3
Dr. Manzoor Ahmad examines the impact of climate and weather on food production and food security. He also discusses other factors, such as underinvestment in agriculture and higher energy prices, against a background of the global economic crisis.
“ … UN agencies have a crucial role to play in helping developing countries adapt to climate change.”
23 June 2009, Address at the IMD, Lausanne
International Trade, Climate Change and Agriculture, Perspectives Beyond the Crisis: Business Dialogue with Global Policy Makers
Perspectives on the impact of international trade on food availability, the current world food situation, and interlinkages between climate change, agriculture and population growth.
“Will there be enough food for 9 billion people by 2050?"
18 May 2009, UNCTAD, Geneva
The Global Economic Crisis – its causes and its multiple impacts, UNCTAD Public Symposium: Global Economic Crisis – its causes and its multiple impacts
The impact of the global economic crisis with particular reference to chronic hunger, investment in agriculture and uncertainty in trade in agricultural products.
“… with the financial crisis and rising unemployment, there seems to be every chance that the number of chronically malnourished people may further increase.”
22 April 2009, CSR, GAINS and GWIT Roundtable, Intercontinental Hotel, Geneva
Innovative Solutions to Fight Malnutrition, CSR and the future of food: innovative solutions to fight malnutrition
How should food security issues be tackled? This presentation examines the background to changes in food prices and suggests how to move forward. It also highlights issues such as biofuels, food wastages and the impact of high food prices on nutrition.
“With growing population and income, demand for food cereals is expected to rise by 50% by 2030. Agricultural productivity growth, on the other hand, has been declining."
March 2009, Public Service Review, International Development Online No.13, UK
Unfair Trade, Public Service Review: International Development 13 (pages 51-53)
In this article, Dr. Manzoor Ahmad argues for an improved set of internationally agreed trade rules for agricultural goods as a part of the Doha Round to address food security in developing countries.
“Could stronger trade rules play any significant role in stabilizing food prices and lowering the risk of any future food crises?
31 March 2009, IMD, Lausanne
Food and Agriculture: Strengths and Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats (SWOT Analysis), Food/agriculture, water and entrepreneurship for an interactive dialogue (Speaking Notes)
In this address to senior business executives, Dr. Manzoor Ahmad presents a SWOT analysis of food and agriculture in this time of crisis. He balances issues such as increased awareness of food security and use of scientific knowledge against the challenges of population growth and climate change.
“There is growing competition between food and energy needs due to the increasing use of bio-fuels.”
6 March 2009, ILO, Geneva
The Impact of the Food Price Crisis on Decent Work, ILO Tripartite Technical Workshop on the Impact of the Food Price Crisis on Decent work
Dr. Manzoor Ahmad comments on the ILO’s draft paper on this topic. He addresses issues such as the impact of food prices on employment and child labour. He also gives an update on food prices and highlights some FAO initiatives.
“Focused research on the impact of food crisis on rural employment is urgently needed.”
26-30 January 2009, UNHRC, Geneva
The Right to Food, Second Session of the Human Rights Council Advisory Committee
Since the World Food Summit in 1996, much work has been undertaken by the FAO regarding the Right to Food. This is an intervention at the Human Rights Council Advisory Committee on that topic. It highlights the FAO’s Right to Food Guidelines and looks at food security and investment in agriculture.
“The Right to Food is one of FAO’s priorities.”
13 January 2009, CUTS, Geneva
Facing Emerging Challenges in the Global Trading System, Possible Way Forward to Face
Emerging Challenges in the Global Trading System
Slower growth in the world gross product could impact on trade and poverty reduction, and bring demands for protectionist measures. How can we deal with such challenges?
“Keeping trade flowing in times of international recession is an international and regional challenge as well as a national one.”
January 2009, FAO In-Touch, Rome
An Insight into the Work of the Director of the FAO Liaison Office, The Director's interview with In-Touch (an FAO internal publication)
Volatile food prices and their effects on the world’s poor have brought the FAO into the limelight. In this interview, Dr. Manzoor Ahmad outlines the activities of the FAO Liaison Office. He stresses the need for cooperation between the international organizations in addressing humanitarian crises and climate change.
“What’s most important is that you have to believe in what you do.”
4-5 October 2008, IMD, Lausanne
Food and Energy Security Challenges, Food and Energy Security Challenges (Statement at IMD Lausanne addressing the Fifth Multi-stakeholder Dialogue entitled: Trade and Climate Change: Collaboration or Confrontation?)
Why are there no international rules to deal with surging food and fuel prices and the financial crunch? What can be done to ensure food and energy security against such a background?
“… the challenges from food and energy security are extra-ordinary and need matching and well-coordinated international response.”
25 September 2008,WTO Public Forum, Geneva
World Food Crisis: Are Trade Rules a Problem or a Way Forward?, World Food Crisis: Are Trade Rules a Problem or a Way Forward?
Dr. Manzoor Ahmad addresses four issues: whether trade rules could stabilize world food prices and reduce the number of chronically malnourished people; why the Uruguay Round Agreement on Agriculture has not made a difference to the overall food situation; whether the Doha Round could be a way forward to solving these issues and the role of FAO in tackling the food crisis.
“FAO anticipated the onset of a global crisis in mid-2007 and started acting immediately.”
1-3 September 2008, UN Human Rights Council, The 2008 Human Rights Council Social Forum, Geneva
Food Security, Food Crisis and the Right to Food, Human Rights Council Social Forum 2008
Eradicating poverty and extreme hunger is top of the UN’s Millennium Development Goals. The target is to halve the number of people living on less than a dollar a day and the number of people who suffer from hunger. Dr. Manzoor Ahmad discusses the food crisis and its relation to poverty and linkages with globalization, and makes suggestions for achieving these goals.
“Why is poverty decreasing but hunger increasing globally?”