FAO Regional Office for Europe and Central Asia

Regional workshop highlights success of FAO-Türkiye Partnership Programmes

A regional workshop dedicated to the FAO–Türkiye Partnership Programmes (FTPP) took place on 24 January in Baku, Republic of Azerbaijan, to discuss the results and successes of recent projects. The workshop participants consisted of high-level representatives of relevant institutions in the countries of the subregion involved in the projects. The workshop was held as part of the  “Enhancing the visibility of the FAO–Türkiye Partnership Programmes" project.

Building on Türkiye’s long-lasting partnership with FAO, the FAO–Türkiye Partnership Programmes have had a transformative impact on agriculture, food and natural resources management, notably in beneficiary countries in Central Asia and the Caucasus. Since the initial phase of FTPP in 2007, the scope of the programme has widened to include more countries and to encompass new themes. Türkiye’s total contribution reached USD 30 million. Currently, the FTPP consists of two modules: the FAO–Türkiye Partnership Programme on Food and Agriculture (FTPP II) and the FAO–Türkiye Forestry Partnership Programme (FTFP). FTPP II and FTFP together comprise 20 projects covering a wide array of topics including but not limited to fisheries, forestry, food security, food safety, food loss and waste, and rural women.

The one-day workshop provided participants from the Republic of Azerbaijan, Georgia, the Republic of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, the Republic of Moldova, the Republic of Tajikistan, the Republic of Türkiye, the Republic of Turkmenistan, and the Republic of Uzbekistan with a valuable opportunity exchange knowledge and share experiences on how to  enhance food security, reduce rural poverty and strengthen capacities in forestry, natural resources, desertification and sustainable development. Speakers, panelists and participants discussed the objectives, activities and accomplishments of FTPP projects implemented under the programmes, exchanging lessons learned and experiences, and providing an opportunity to discuss steps for the future.

During the opening session, speakers emphasized the role of FTPP in the development of food and agriculture sectors in the beneficiary countries, and expressed  their appreciation of Türkiye’s contributions to the programmes.

Two keynote sessions followed. In the first, the Assistant FAO Representatives of Türkiye and Azerbaijan presented a panoramic view of the FTPP, identifying priority issues in the partner countries related to food systems, natural resources, capacity building and sustainable development, and detailing the success of the projects. Moreover, in this session, Erzsebet Illes, planning and programme coordination officer explained how the FTPP contributes to the implementation of the new FAO Strategic Framework.

The second keynote session explored the sustainability of the FTPP across a series of presentations delivered by government representatives of the beneficiary countries.

The workshop included various panel discussions on good practices highlighting project successes with a focus on gender and rural development as well as on the future of the FTPP where Panelists shared their opinions on innovative approaches and linked current and emerging issues at the country level with global and regional trends in food and agriculture and natural resources management. The panel also discussed the relationship between FAO’s four betters concept and innovations in production, nutrition, environment, and life.

The last panel was dedicated to the communication and visibility activities of the FTPP. Specialists from Azerbaijan, Kyrgyzstan, Türkiye and Uzbekistan discussed regional communication strategies and public information campaigns for the programmes’ achievements. They also explored the linkages between the Sustainable Development Goals and FTPP communication activities. The closing session of the workshop then summarized the main lines of the workshop.

This regional event demonstrated that the FTPP responds effectively to current challenges in the agriculture and food sectors and natural resources management in the beneficiary countries. All participants agreed that the resulting regional collaboration and synergies enable the FTPP to function as a powerful support mechanism for achieving the SDGs, in particular No Poverty and Zero Hunger.

24 January 2023, Baku, Azerbaijan