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FAO renews support for recovery in conflict-affected areas of eastern Ukraine

FAO has an important role to play in a new EUR 25-million project to provide support for eastern Ukraine.

The recently announced initiative “EU support to eastern Ukraine: Recovery, peacebuilding and governance, 2018–2022” is financially supported by the European Union and implemented by the United Nations Development Programme, UN Women, the United Nations Population Fund and FAO. FAO presented its part of the project earlier this week in Severodonetsk city in Ukraine, announcing its intention to promote the economic recovery and development of micro, small and medium enterprises located in government-controlled areas of Donetsk and Lugansk oblasts.

Despite much progress, conflict-affected regions of Ukraine continue to face substantial obstacles to building socioeconomically developed and resilient communities. Key contributing factors include the closure of enterprises, the economic blockade, damage to critical infrastructure, endemic unemployment, and increases in prices and poverty that have outpaced national averages.

This has had a negative impact on food security and people’s ability to meet basic needs, often forcing them to apply negative coping mechanisms.

To this end, FAO has launched a project to improve value chain development in Ukraine by establishing a widely accessible and effective network of service providers, improving market access for various forms of enterprises, and providing high-quality technical and vocational training based on market needs in the region.

The start of the project has coincided with two FAO-supported trainings in Severodonetsk this week – both targeting local agribusiness – as part of a separate ongoing project. The first one, “Agrotrade Ukraine,” was conducted for local enterprises and authorities; it aimed to provide step-by-step guidelines on export opportunities for Ukrainian producers and key rules of trade relations with European vendors, including the specifics of the European Union organic market, with an accent on the marketing of honey.

The second training, “Climate change: Challenges and opportunities in Ukraine’s agricultural sector,” gathered the representatives of regional departments of Agricultural Development, the local chamber of commerce, various non-governmental organizations, state and private extension services, and providers of machinery and social services. Experts from FAO, the Ukrainian Hydrometeorological Centre and the Institute of Animal Science shared key international findings on global climate change and national forecasts on the impacts that climate change has on plant growing, forestry, fisheries and livestock. Additionally, the experts suggested a comprehensive list of measures to be taken by farmers in order to adapt to climate change and mitigate its effects.

Both trainings have served as preparation for the launch of a wider educational programme on the upcoming FAO project. The Organization will continue its long-term partnership with the European Union and other international partners in the areas of recovery and local governance reform. FAO intends to further enhance its presence in eastern Ukraine, including promoting the implementation of 2030 Agenda  and the Sustainable Development Goals.

11 December 2018, Kyiv

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