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Food and Agricultural policies for a new international economic order

65. The Conference took note of the background against which this item had been placed on its Agenda. Many delegates stated that a growing inequality in economic conditions between countries had caused the Twenty-Eighth Session of the UN General Assembly in 1973 to call a Special Session in 1975, to discuss the problems of development. In the meantime the Sixth Special Session on raw materials and development had taken place in April-May 1974, resulting in the Declaration and Programme of Action on the Establishment of a New International Economic Order. The resolutions there adopted with some reservations, in what some had called a historic document, set out the principles and objectives of the developing world as well as the basis for a new pattern in international economic relations. The Twenty-Ninth Session of the UN General Assembly adopted a further resolution endorsing the Declaration and Programme of Action in the Establishment of a New International Economic Order. At the Seventh Special Session, the process was carried further, and what might be considered the first concrete steps were taken towards the inauguration of a new era of international economic cooperation. All Organizations of the United Nations had been entrusted with the implementation of the Programme of Action, and FAO had an important role to play in this.

66. The Conference carried out a broad debate on the major policy issues facing the world in the food and agricultural sector in the light of the prospects for the remainder of DD2, the recommendations of the WFC, of the resolutions of the Sixth and Seventh Special Sessions and the Twenty-Ninth Session of the UN General Assembly, and in particular of the endeavours under way to establish a New International Economic Order. Together with the debate on Medium-term Objectives, this discussion also provided guidance for FAO as to the ways in which it might have to readjust its programme and working methods in response to the changing requirements.

67. The documents prepared for the consideration of the Conference indicated clearly that, despite the relatively larger crops in 1975 in much of the developing world, progress during the first half of the 1970s had been disappointing and the medium- and longer term prospects for the food situation remained alarming. Between 1970 and 1974 the per caput food production in developing market economy regions had actually fallen at a rate of over 1 percent a year. The extrapolated growth of production in the same regions to 1985 would remain below the growth of population, to say nothing of demand growth. These trends would have serious implications for the nutritional status of the population of the affected countries.

68. Because of the importance of agriculture in the overall development process, FAO would necessarily remain at the very centre of development action. The Programme of Work and Budget (PWB) for 1976-77 represented an effort to maintain the relevance of FAO's activities to the changing situation; a good part of it had been drawn up as a direct response to the resolutions of the WFC.

69. However, the process of adaptation had to be continuous, since there was no doubt that FAO could do more to help bring about desirable changes in the economic relations among nations. The most relevant areas included the Organization's many programmes in support of production growth and improved nutrition, its more recent initiatives regarding world food security, its long-standing activities in the area of commodity problems and policies, its endeavours to promote structural reform in agriculture, and the strategy proposed for international agricultural adjustment.

70. The Conference agreed with the general thrust of the policy issues facing the national governments and the international community, as presented in document C 75/14.

71. In discussing the policy issues concerned with food production and food security, the Conference agreed that the principal emphasis had to be on efforts to raise food production in developing countries. This arose not only from the recommendations of the WFC, but also from the fact that food production in many developing countries had not increased concomitantly with the growth of population and effective demand, with consequent adverse effects on their nutritional status, the extent of their self-sufficiency in food, and their balance of payments position.

72. The Conference agreed that for this purpose, the developing countries would have to further intensify their efforts to mobilize resources and to give increased priority in their development plans to food production and the agricultural sector in general.

73. Some delegates emphasized that while it was important to give agriculture high priority, this did not need to be at the expense of non-agricultural objectives, since the agricultural and non-agricultural sectors were closely interlinked. Whenever possible, the target for developing countries should be self-sufficiency in their basic foods.

74. In line with this priority, some delegates suggested that FAO should concentrate more of its efforts on promotion of increased agricultural and particularly food production. The Conference noted that FAO had already responded to this need by proposing a PWB which placed heavy emphasis on supporting efforts of developing countries to increase their agricultural production.

75. The Conference agreed that even if the developing countries made a maximum effort towards accelerating their food production, it would not be possible for them to reach the required levels of output without a major transfer of resources from the developed countries, to be accompanied by technical aid. While some delegates did not accept the validity of the secretariat estimates for the magnitude of such transfers needed, there was general agreement that the value of international resource transfers should increase greatly.

76. Much of the resources would be needed for major investments in such fields as irrigation, expansion of cultivated area, increased productivity, storage facilities, and for integrated rural development schemes. At the same time, the provision of inputs such as fertilizers, pesticides, and appropriate agricultural machinery at reasonable prices was felt to be equally important.

77. The development of new technology through research and its application through training, extension services and incentives to farmers were considered important components of the efforts to promote production, to be supported by increased credit and improved marketing. The importance of better post-harvest management of already produced food, with a view to reduction of losses in harvest, transport, storage and processing, was also emphasized as a means towards increasing food availability.

78. FAO should enlarge its activities in support of food and agricultural production growth in developing countries. Depending on the situation in individual countries, it would be required to extend its assistance either through integrating its activities with the nationally drawn up production plans, or by helping countries to identify the most suitable policies and programmes for increasing agricultural production in line with local requirements and the local social and economic environment. In this, as in other policy areas, FAO should keep as its guideline the relevant resolutions of the WFC, and the Sixth and Seventh Special Sessions of the UN General Assembly.

79. The Conference endorsed the proposals contained in the document on policies for improved nutrition which suggested that countries should adopt a planned approach to nutrition improvement, combined with nutrition intervention programmes, and indicated areas and ways in which international agencies and developed countries could assist developing countries in this task. The Conference noted that a detailed discussion of this topic, covering, inter alia, the progress made in implementing Resolution V of the WFC, and the activities planned by FAO within an interagency framework, was carried out under Agenda Item 10.

80. While agreeing with the suggested approach, some delegates stressed the fact that adequate production was a precondition for effective implementation of nutrition policies. One delegate suggested in this connexion that first emphasis should be placed on adequate quantities of food being made available, and that the nutritional quality of foods, while still of extreme importance, had necessarily to take second place. One delegate also cautioned against too many resources being used on the diagnosis of the nutrition situation, suggesting that fairly simple indicators would give operationally adequate guidelines. Other delegates stressed the social implications of good nutrition, and the importance of environmental sanitation and quality of drinking water for the health and nutritional status of rural populations.

81. There was widespread agreement with the policy proposals put forward for the purpose of achieving faster growth of agricultural export earnings of the developing countries. It was recognized that efforts to find solutions to the commodity trade problems were at the very heart of the "North-South" dialogue. The Conference discussed the proposed approach more fully under Agenda item 9.1.

82. The Conference agreed on the importance of structural reform in agriculture, which many delegates considered a prerequisite for the acceleration of food production in developing countries, as well as for the achievement of greater social Justice. There was general agreement that, in those countries, rural structures should provide for people's participation in planning and decision making, incentives for increased production, adequate rural infrastructure and social services, and more effective administrative organization.

83. Several delegates stressed the importance of adopting an Integrated Rural Development approach, for both production and social reasons, though it was suggested by some that such an approach was costly in terms of both money and administrative manpower.

84. Some delegates held the view that radical agrarian reform was a precondition to progress, since experience (e.g. with the green revolution) had shown that an accelerated rate of growth of food production could not be sustained until appropriate institutions conducive to economic growth and social change had also emerged. Such institutional reform was necessary in order to redistribute economic and political power, and also to increase the incomes of the rural poor. Others pointed out that in some conditions it was most appropriate to concentrate on reforms which gave farmers adequate incentives for adoption of new techniques through improvements in such fields as land tenure conditions, marketing, credit, and price policies. Some delegates warned against too rapid change through land reform, since the social cost might otherwise exceed the economic benefits being sought. The Conference agreed, however, that each country had to develop its policies for structural change against the background of its own social objectives.

85. The Conference agreed that increased national and collective self-reliance in developing countries was an important basis for accelerated agricultural and general development. Several delegates cited their own experience in this regard. At the same time it was recognized that this did not mean that countries would have to turn their backs on the advantages to be gained from trade and international division of labour, and from international solidarity as reflected in various programmes for mutual cooperation and development assistance. The objective of a greater degree of self-sufficiency in basic foods was recognized as valid by all delegates, though some felt that there was need for analysis of its various effects. Some delegates expressed themselves particularly in favour of the proposals for increasing the availability of local trained manpower. Others stressed the importance of collective self-reliance through economic cooperation among developing countries.

86. The Conference agreed with the basic conclusions of the analysis of the problems ant policy issues. Many delegates felt that these conclusions suggested that unless the old unjust international economic order wee changed the world would before long have a mayor food crises on its hands, the rate of economic development of the developing countries would slow down, and social and political tensions would rise. It recognized that there were no easy ways to success, but it wee convinced that prospects for developing countries for solving their problems were good. Developing countries would have to make greater efforts to raise their food production to reduce domestic inequalities, and to provide for ruraldevelopment more in keeping with increasing well-being of rural families. Developed countries would have to give more development aid to agriculture, to support developing countries in their pursuit of their social and economic development goals, and to facilitate the growth of the developing countries export earnings.

87. The Conference concluded that the basic analysis of the required policy actions was now well advanced, and detailed recommendations for action had been made at the WFC and other fore. The implementation of the recommendations had, however, been slow. The stress therefore had to he not on further analysis of policy options, hut on action. The majority of delegates suggested that on the one hand many developing countries needed to devote more of their attention and development resources to agriculture and on the other hand that the developed countries should now make definite commitments, in the spirit of the New International Economic Order, in such areas as trade policies, and technical, financial and food aid, to help speed up the development of the developing countries.

88. The Conference noted that the task of monitoring the implementation of Section V (Food and Agriculture) of the resolution of the Seventh Session of the UN General Assembly had been assigned to the World Food Council. This task would call for adequate technical preparation SO that the fundamental policy issues on which political decision was required by the WFC could be clearly identified and formulated. FAO had the capacity to assist the Council in this monitoring role through its statistical and technical services, its intergovernmental machinery, and its proposed strategy on international agricultural adjustment, with accompanying guidelines and indicators, which the Conference considered under another agenda item .

89. The efforts to bring about a New International Economic Order had, in the view of several delegates, necessarily an effect also on the organization and working methods of international agencies, including FAO. This had been recognized by the Seventh Special Session of the UN General Assembly, through the decision to set up an ad hoc Committee on the Structure of the UN System. These delegates therefore put forward a number of proposals for changes in the programme presentation and allocation of budget resources, the internal structure of the organization, its relations and coordination with other international organizations, and its committee structure.

90. The Conference then adopted the following resolution:

Resolution 3/75



Bearing in mind resolutions 3201 (S-VI) and 3202 (S-VI) containing the Declaration and Programme of Action on the Establishment of a New International Economic Order, Resolution 3381 (XXIX) of the General Assembly containing the Charter of Economic Rights and Duties of States, Resolution 3362 (S-VII) on International Economic Development and Cooperation adopted by the Seventh Special Session of the General Assembly, especially its Sections V and VII, and the recommendations of the World Food Conference,

Considering the decision of the Conference to establish a Committee on World Food Security (Res. 21/75) with which the other committees and subsidiary organs of FAO shall collaborate, in particular the Committee on Commodity Problems (Res. 23/75) which in turn shall undertake the task of studying progress in international agricultural adjustment and recommending to nations measures for improvement and stabilization of the terms of trade of the developing countries through an integrated approach to commodity problems.

Considering that the United Nations has at present under discussion a new structure for international economic cooperation that may affect the entire United Nations system and, consequently the relations between FAO and the Economic and Social Council, Recalling and reaffirming the constitutional mandate of the Organization.

Taking into account that the Agreement concluded between the United Nations and FAO in conformity with Article 57 of the Charter of the United Nations and Article XII of the Constitution of FAO recognized this Organization as the Specialized Agency of the United Nations responsible for food and agriculture, Bearing in mind Article XII of the FAO Constitution, and also Article XIII paragraph 1 which stipulates that "in order to provide for close cooperation between the Organization and other international organizations with related responsibilities, the Conference may enter into agreements with the competent authorities of such organizations defining the distribution of responsibilities and methods of cooperation",

  • 1. Affirms its belief that the Organization should play a fundamental role in the United Nations system for implementation of a new international economic order in the field of food and agriculture;

    2. Requests the Director-General to review from an agricultural standpoint the relationship between the prices of agricultural products and other commodities and industrial products, in particular how to achieve greater price stability and improved access to the agricultural commodities markets by exports from developing countries, and to submit a report to the Committee on Commodity Problems within the framework of FAO's contribution to international agricultural adjustment. In this work, the FAO should cooperate closely with other UN bodies. and especially with UNCTAD;

    3. Requests the Director-General to prepare and elaborate draft arrangements between FAO and the World Food Council, and a draft agreement with the proposed International Fund for Agricultural Development, clearly defining the distribution of responsibilities and methods of cooperation between FAO and these bodies;

    4. Requests further the Director-General to report to the Sixty-Ninth Session of the FAO Council on the present relations between FAO and the World Food Council relating to administrative, budgetary and personnel matters in order to clarify the distribution of administrative and financial responsibilities, as well as the methods of cooperation between the respective bodies, and not to accept any commitment for the period after the Sixty-Ninth Session of the FAO Council;

    5. Requests also the Director-General to prepare negotiations with the United Nations on the role of FAO in the context of the initiatives for restructuring of the UN system in the economic and social fields and in due course to report thereon to the FAO Council;

    6. Requests the Council to present to the Nineteenth Session of the Conference the texts of any draft agreements for its approval or confirmation as appropriate;

    7. Requests the Director-General to take the necessary steps to have the Consultative Group on Food Production and Investment in Developing Countries keep the FAO Council informed on its work, and present recommendations to the Organization in the specific ambit of this Group's competence;

    8. Reaffirms the need for fostering collaboration between FAO and other international organizations coordinating the efforts of the international community in the ambit of international economic relations, particularly the development financing agencies, regional economic commissions, UNCTAD and GATT.

    9. Reaffirms its request to the Director-General to study the restructuring of FAO and further requests the Council to embark, as soon as possible, on a study of the composition and terms of reference of the Council, the Programme Committee, the Finance Committee and the CCLM, in the context of the establishment of a new international economic order and the restructuring of the UN Economic and Social System. These recommendations to the Council and the Director General should ensure that the Organization responds concretely to the aspirations of the developing countries with respect to their effective participation in the affairs of the Organization, bearing in mind the need for an equitable geographical distribution.

  • (Adopted 27 November 1975)

    B. Strengthening of national and international agricultural research

    Areas of research requiring further emphasis
    FAO's role in support of agricultural research
    Approach to international cooperation in agricultural research

    91. The Conference agreed unanimously that research was a vital instrument of agricultural progress which should be regarded as an integral part of the process of rural development, and recommended that it should be supported and strengthened nationally, regionally and internationally, including through FAO's own Regular and field Programmes. This was essential not only to enable member countries to increase food production and improve the nutritional levels of their people through the adaptation of existing technology to local needs, but also to enable them to develop a strong and independent scientific and technological basis of their own. Attention was drawn to the very high rates of return which had been demonstrated to investment in well planned research, and to difficulties which had frequently arisen in connexion with imported technology, which had often proved a false economy and a distortive factor in the economies of the recipient countries.

    92. The Conference welcomed document C 75/15 as a comprehensive statement of the main problems to be tackled in building strong national research capabilities in developing countries, drawing on support from developed countries, international research centres, and multilateral and bilateral technical assistance agencies to build a more effective and better articulated global agricultural research system.

    93. In respect of building national institutions, the Conference agreed that under-investment in research and scientific training was still a major constraint on agricultural development. It urged its member countries to review their support to their own organizations so as to give due priority, where necessary, to improving the conditions of service and facilities of the research personnel so as to allow quality research to be undertaken, reduce the "brain drain", and provide adequate "critical mass" for effective inter-disciplinary research. Increased support should be in real terms to offset the effects of inflation.

    94. The Conference then adopted the following resolution:

    Resolution 4/75



    Recalling World Food Conference Resolution IV relating to Food and Agricultural Research, Extension and Training, which recommended the strengthening at the national, regional and international levels of agricultural research and related services and improving the dissemination of their results,

    Recalling further Resolution 9/71 adopted at its Sixteenth Session, which gave emphasis to the encouragement of agricultural research in the Organization's Programme of Work and Budget,

    Commending the action already taken by the Organization in the establishment of the current Agricultural Research Information System and the encouragement of stronger links with national research services and international agricultural research centres both in the current biennium and in the proposed Programme of Work for 1976-77 and through its activities in support of the Consultative Croup on International Agricultural Research (CCIAR), its Technical Advisory Committee and the International Board for Plant Genetic Resources,

    Welcoming the increased support for international agricultural research programmes being given through the medium of the CGIAR,

    Considering that the orientation and conduct of research work should be increasingly suited to the development priorities of each region and country, with particular reference to the needs of the developing countries, and based on optimal use of local physical and human resources,

    Considering further the importance of documentation on the results of already completed investigations and on current research operations,

    Recognizing the need for mutual impact between research and development services including extension,

    Recognizing the need for the introduction of research evaluation procedures,

    Expressing its conviction that national research services in developing countries must be created, or further strengthened and improved, to provide new means of improving food and agricultural production, and post-harvest technology, and that these should include training, the adaptation of research results from national and international research centres, and the provision of appropriate links to extension and other supporting services for medium and small farmers, and fishermen so as to assure the effective application of research results,

    Recognizing the need for further research on the whole chain of processing, storage, distribution and marketing in order to provide better incentives to producers, and to improve food availability to consumers,

  • 1. Urges all Member Nations to review and evaluate their national agricultural research systems, and also their supporting services for small and medium farmers and fishermen including the provision for training;

    2. Requests all Member Nations already having advanced research systems to reinforce their efforts, through bilateral and international arrangements, to assist developing countries to build up their national research capabilities, as well as to devote an increasing share of their own research effort to the specific problems of tropical and semi-arid agriculture;

    3. Stresses the importance of cooperation among developing countries in the field of agricultural research;

    4. Calls the attention of Member Nations to the significance of a close interaction between research scientists, extension workers, farmers and fishermen, and consumers - in the solution of practical problems - and requests FAO to assist Member Nations in this respect;

    5. Recommends that FAO give strong and coherent support to the establishment of improved agricultural research capacity of national research centres in developing countries;

    6. Requests the Director-General to consider what steps may be needed to strengthen the Organization to fulfil this task during the 1976-77 biennium;

    7. Requests further that the Director-General contemplate, in conjunction with the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research, the establishment, wherever necessary, in homogeneous geographic regions of a regional research and agricultural documentation centre having as its principal task to support and complement agricultural research efforts undertaken within a national framework by the countries of the same ecological area .

  • (Adopted 26 November 1975)

    Areas of research requiring further emphasis

    95. The Conference agreed that FAO had an important role to play in assisting in the identification of regional and national priorities for research; it supported the broad priorities suggested in document C 75/15, and emphasized the need for continuing strong international and national efforts to increase the quantity and improve the quality of the staple foods of the mass of the population: cereals, food legumes, and roots and tubers. The latter, in particular, were felt to merit yet more research.

    96. Attention was drawn, however, to certain products and problems, including those related to factors of production, which were felt to have been given insufficient emphasis. The products included fruits and vegetables, oilseeds, fish, and tropical hardwoods, in each case involving not only production but also post-harvest technology to improve producer returns, increase domestic "value-added" and provide additional employment. Livestock and pasture development, especially in the drier and upland areas, were also felt to merit more support.

    97. Among the general problems identified were the improvement and stabilization of agricultural production under rainfed conditions - both at the low and the high ends of the rainfall spectrum; the needs of high altitude area; better environmental management and control of pollution (including that by agricultural chemicals), erosion, salinization, and other sources of loss of productivity both under irrigated and rainfed conditions. The Conference noted that several international agencies were working on environmental problems and the need for a fully integrated inter-agency programme was stressed. For this purpose the Conference invited the Director-General to maintain the necessary contacts with Unesco, UNEP and WMO.

    98. The development of more efficient agro-industrial technology, including that related to input manufacture, the production of more efficient and lower-cost inputs suited to tropical conditions, and the use of zootechnical and household wastes for livestock feed and fertilizer, was felt to be a further fruitful field for cooperation between developed and developing country institutions and international agencies. A related subject requiring basic as well as applied research was energy use in agriculture and research on low-cost sources of energy. Here it was argued that basic research should be left to the scientific community, and that FAO's main role should be to support, and where necessary, to cooperate with appropriate institutions already engaged in applied research in this field.

    99. There was strong emphasis on the need for socio-economic research, both at the macro and micro-levels, including that required to improve the transfer mechanisms, especially for the smaller farmers. -The latter implied an inter-disciplinary research approach involving both biological and social scientists to define problems, and pilot projects to demonstrate solutions. The need for closer contact between research workers and farmers was emphasized. If this was not done, their motivations, resources and constraints would not be understood, research would be divorced from practice, and new technology developed by research institutions might either be unsuited to farmers' needs, or unacceptable for reasons beyond their control. Moreover, fundamental social or economic changes might be needed before the results of research could be put to work and farmers provided with adequate incentives to adopt them. A feedback from the farmers to researchers and national planners was therefore felt to be a pre-requisite for successful transfer of existing improved technology or the development and widespread adoption of new technology, and the Conference considered that FAO, through its field projects and Senior Agricultural Advisers/FAO Country Representatives, should cooperate with national research and extension agencies and farmers' organizations in providing means of testing and demonstrating new technology at the farm level, and the essential feedback to policy makers.

    100. The Conference adopted the following resolution:

    Resolution 5/75



    Recognizing that the international price of fertilizers as well as the cost of applying them and constructing factories constitute an obstacle which limits their use and represents a threat to food production in the developing countries.

    Bearing in mind the need to employ more economic alternatives to these inputs,

    Noting the importance of the effect of nitro-fixing bacteria in symbiosis with many leguminous crops or species of other families having an ameliorative effect on soils which la superior to chemical fertilizer.

    Emphasizing the need to coordinate international efforts to stimulate research in connexion with this process and publicize the respective information, especially in the developing countries.

    1. Recommends that the Director-General grant highest priority to the diffusion of a proper use of biological fixing of nitrogen through nitro-fixing bacteria and convene to this effect an ad hoc meeting of "rhizo-biologists" for the purpose of working out a plan to disseminate on a worldwide scale the practical application of recent research taking into account local situations; and

    2. Urges Member Nations in a position to do so to provide, through a coordinated action of their specialized organizations, the skills required to execute this programme.

    (Adopted 26 November 1975)

    FAO's role in support of agricultural research

    101. The Conference strongly endorsed the proposals for follow-up contained in part 5 of document C 75/15 as providing a viable framework for future FAO support to agricultural research and commended this to the Director-General.

    102. Particular emphasis was, however, placed on FAO action in the fields of policy guidance as to priorities, assistance to building and/or strengthening national research systems, training, the improvement of the information base, and of developing linkages between research and other services to farmers in order to accelerate the transfer and adoption of promising new technology. It was suggested that to help FAO assist its member countries, the research coordinating committee at Headquarters might be strengthened by representation of those countries, leading possibly to the subsequent formation of a statutory body.

    103. The Conference recommended that FAO should stand ready to assist countries on request in the diagnosis of problems and in the planning of national systems to meet identified national priorities, and should be given adequate flexibility to do this on an interdisciplinary basis. This was an area in which FAO might utilize the facilities and resources of existing national institutions and member countries (both developed and developing), and the Conference noted the willingness of several of these both to offer such cooperation and to provide financial assistance to well formulated projects. It further requested the CGFPI and the IFAD to give strong support to such requests for assistance, noted a suggestion for the establishment of informal consortia of donors, and suggested that FAO could play an important part as an intermediary in helping countries to identify and obtain the necessary financial means, as well as in providing guidelines on research organization and management based on comparative studies of existing forms of organization.

    104. The Conference agreed that training was of crucial importance in assisting the developing countries to upgrade their research establishments, and recommended that FAO, in collaboration with the International Agricultural Research Centres (IARCs) supported by the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research (CGIAR) and other organizations for cooperation, should consider how current training of research and extension staffs could be reinforced. While the International Centres were encouraged to step up their present efforts to train research planners, managers, and scientists with a practical orientation towards the needs of developing countries, an urgent need was also recognized to train production specialists and extension technicians to advise and train farmers. Such training should not only be technical but should emphasize understanding of farmers and their problems, and should therefore be conducted either at the national level or within a group of countries having comparable problems and conditions. FAO could play a valuable part in organizing this type of programme. The Conference welcomed indications of increased support from the more developed countries for training and urged that a scholarship programme be established with FAO acting as coordinator.

    105. A related aspect of this problem which the Conference recommended should be accorded higher priority was scientific manpower planning, with special reference to the identification of training needs. This should be undertaken over the long-term on a country-by-country basis with adequate follow-up. The Conference urged that studies along these lines should be reinforced and noted that some had already been initiated by FAO.

    106. The Conference recommended that scientific information cervices should be considered as a priority element of FAO's Regular Programme, and expressed satisfaction at FAO's initiative in developing the AGRIS, CARIS and genetic information systems. These should help to avoid duplication, to facilitate coordination of national and international research programmes, and the development of cooperative research networks; as well as accelerating progress by giving individual research workers or institutions in developing countries more ready access to the latest data on completed and current research and to its material output. However, the Conference urged FAO to ensure that such systems were simple and practically oriented to make use of other related systems in the interest of complete coverage. In this respect FAO should ensure efficient division of work. The Conference urged all member countries to collaborate fully with FAO so as to make these system a truly global, since any mayor gaps could defeat their objectives.

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