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Global Forum on Food Security and Nutrition • FSN Forum

Re: Invitation to an open discussion on the political outcome document of the ICN2

WHO Western Pacific Region
WHO Western Pacific RegionAustralian Permanent Mission to the UN GenevaSwitzerland

Comments on the ICN2 zero draft political outcome document

WHO WESTERN PACIFIC REGION

The WHO Western Pacific Region welcomes the opportunity to provide comments in relation to the Second International Conference on Nutrition (ICN2) zero draft political outcome document.  We also reiterate our support for the Joint Working Group (JWG) and its work to develop a strong and relevant statement.

At this time, we present general comments on the content and structure of the document, with the view to providing more detailed comments on language to inform discussions at the next meeting of the JWG on 14 April 2014.

The document in its current form is not clear in its intention.  It does not successfully draw out all the drivers of good nutrition, nor adequately acknowledge the need for collective work or approaches.

  • The document overemphasises the role of food systems but underplays the role of other drivers of good nutrition such as health, education and social welfare.

Overarching principles of good nutrition should be highlighted at the beginning of the document, so as to provide for a logical basis for commitments which appear later in the document. 

The document should also make early reference to the different sectors which must be engaged.

  • The reference to different sectors in paragraph 12 needs to made earlier in the document.

The document should reference current WHO and FAO activities and commitments in the nutrition space (for example, the Global action plan for the prevention and control of NCDs 2013-2020) in a more strategic manner. 

  • Where possible, language from existing commitments should be inserted to ensure the strength and relevancy of the document.

The commitments proposed in paragraph 21 do not sufficiently provide for actions in all relevant sectors.  Once again, there is a disproportionate focus on actions relating to food systems which affects the balance of the commitments statement.

The document should focus on promoting good nutrition - it is difficult to effectively address environmental sustainability in this forum.

The WHO Western Pacific Region looks forward to participating in the development of the document and will appreciate the opportunity to provide specific comments on further iterations of the draft as they become available.