Director-General  QU Dongyu

Director-General and Secretary General of World Meteorological Organization discuss deeper collaboration


10 February 2020, Rome – FAO Director-General QU Dongyu met with Petteri Taalas, Secretary General of the World Meteorological Organization today to explore ways to further collaboration between the two agencies.

The meeting discussed potential WMO support to FAO’s Hand-in-Hand Initiative, which focuses on the most vulnerable people in Small Island Development States, Less-Developed Countries and Land-Locked Developing Countries, where closer cooperation is essential in order to mitigate the negative impacts of climate change and adverse weather events. The Secretary General agreed that there was clear scope to collaborate with FAO under the Hand-in-Hand Initiative.

Both leaders agreed that climate change, extreme weather, drought and flooding all make weather forecasting and preparedness essential, particularly with smallholder agriculturalists who are the most vulnerable. They also discussed the importance of building resilience for communities most affected by climate trends and weather events.

The conversation also touched upon issues related to water management; notably water scarcity, storage, efficiency and policy, looking at possible ways for the two agencies to increase cooperation in those areas.

Dr. Qu indicated that, within the framework of a comprehensive and strategic approach to collaboration between FAO and WMO, there is scope for increased cooperation on issues related to forestry, fisheries, agriculture as well as data sharing.