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FAO DG praises Brazil's "strong commitment" to end hunger

Meets with Brazilian Minister Gilberto Carvalho

Photo: ©FAO/Giulio Napolitano
José Graziano da Silva with Gilberto Carvalho (right)
25 April 2013, Rome - FAO Director-General has praised Brazil's "strong commitment and support" to ending hunger at a meeting with Minister Gilberto Carvalho, Secretary General of the Presidency of the Brazilian Republic. The two held a bilateral meeting on Tuesday during a week-long session of  FAO's governing Council.

Taking part in the Council "has allowed me to grasp the full extent of the measures being implemented by the Director-General to improve FAO's efficiency," Carvalho said.

Brazil strongly supports FAO's efforts to eradicate hunger, he noted, citing his country's own commitment to end poverty and hunger with the country's successful Fome Zero (Zero Hunger) programme, which Graziano da Silva headed before he joined FAO. Partnerships with the private sector and civil societies are the key elements in President Dilma Rousseff's current Brasil sem Miséria (Brazil without Extreme Poverty) social programme, which builds on Fome Zero.

Following a recent revision of the way in which Member Countries' contributions are calculated, Brazil will be paying $15 million more into FAO's regular budget during the next biennium (2014-2015), "but that money is not wasted, it is an investment," Caravalho said.

He encouraged all countries to contribute more to FAO on a voluntary basis.

Carvalho noted that Graziano has achieved major efficiency savings and that the money is being  redirected to finance productive programmes and activities.

Graziano da Silva and Carvalho also discussed cooperation between Brazil and Africa and the participation of Instituto Lula and the African Union in a High-Level Meeting to take place in Addis Ababa on 30 June 30-1 July to focus on new, unified approaches to end hunger in Africa. 

Carvalho cited the example of the PAA Africa Programme a joint initiative involving FAO, the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP), Brazilian experts and the United Kingdom's Department for International Development. This was inspired by Brazil's success in carrying out its Food Purchase Programme (PAA) and WFP's Purchase for Progress (P4P) pilot initiative.

"True solidarity does not happen between the rich and the poor, but when everyone shares what they have," Carvalho added.