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New FAO funding mechanism makes its debut

Sweden and the Netherlands are the first partners with total contributions of $26 million

Photo: ©FAO/Giulio Napolitano
FAO's livelihood assistance helps to improve the food security of vulnerable households as seen here in Niger.
29 November 2010, Rome - Sweden and the Netherlands today became the first resource partners to provide funds to FAO's new multipartner programme, a direct follow up to FAO reform. The voluntary contributions agreed upon, to be used by 2013, amount to a total of roughly $26 million.

The new FAO Multipartner Programme Support Mechanism (FMM) has been developed to enable FAO's resource partners to allocate their contributions in direct support of the agency's Programme of Work and Budget.

Greater trust in FAO

"The willingness of Sweden and the Netherlands to adhere so quickly to the mechanism is encouraging", said FAO Assistant Director-General José Maria Sumpsi, who signed the agreement with Sweden and the Netherlands.

"It also shows that FAO's renewal has engendered greater trust in the agency and the reforms underway. We hope that other countries will join this initiative", he added.

The novelty of the system is that the voluntary contributions are no longer tied to a specific programme or project but go right into the FAO budget along with the assessed contributions from member countries.

This means that FAO can use them wherever appropriate within the terms of the Memorandum of Understanding, to deliver results that will make a difference for people suffering from hunger.

New funds to support global goals

The objective of the agreement is to promote the continuing contribution of food and sustainable agriculture to the attainment of FAO's Global Goals, namely access by all to sufficient and safe food, the contribution of sustainable agriculture and development to economic and social progress, and the conservation and sustainable utilization of natural resources.

Sweden's contribution of approximately $19 million until 2013 will be used for activities designed to meet the climate challenge through sustainable management of natural resources and improved rural livelihoods.

For the first time, Sweden, a member of the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture, makes a significant contribution to the core administrative budget of the Treaty.

The Netherlands's contribution (around $7 million) will support policy assistance and capacity development activities at country level.