Supporting Responsible Investments in Agriculture and Food Systems (RAI)

FAO and PARLATINO join forces to promote responsible investment in agriculture and food systems in the face of the COVID-19 crisis


The Commission on Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries of the Latin American and Caribbean Parliament (PARLATINO) and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) agreed to jointly promote increased responsible investment in agriculture and food systems in order to mitigate the effects of the COVID-19 crisis.  

"The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the urgency of increasing responsible agricultural investment. Today more than ever we need more and better investments to rebuild our economies, support community resilience and keep food supply chains alive," said Marcela Villarreal, Director of FAO's Partnerships Division.

FAO will provide PARLATINO with a practical guide to the Principles for Responsible Investment in Agriculture and Food Systems (CFS-RAI), with detailed guidance and examples of concrete actions.

Another of the agreements between the two organizations was the joint drafting of a declaration to promote the implementation of the CFS-RAI among the countries of Latin America and the Caribbean.

"Sustainable investment and the CFS-RAI principles will be a priority issue in our 2020 joint work plan, whose implementation will be supported by the Spanish Cooperation and the Mexican Agency for International Development Cooperation (AMEXCID)," explained Silvia Giacoppo, Argentine Senator and Alternate Secretary of Commissions of PARLATINO and focal point for FAO.

Creating an environment conducive to responsible investment in agriculture

The CFS-RAI seek to provide guidance on how to promote investments that strengthen food and nutrition security, as well as inclusive economic development and sustainable use of natural resources.

These guidelines contribute to the mitigation and recovery from the effects of the current pandemic, rebuilding more productive and resilient food systems for future crises.

According to Villarreal, "the basis for the implementation of the CFS-RAI principles is the creation of an enabling policy, legal, regulatory and institutional environment to mobilize these investments. Indeed, the enabling environment is one of the main determinants of the volumes and outcomes of agricultural investments.

The importance of creating an enabling environment for responsible investment in the food system was already recognized by parliamentarians around the world in the Declaration of the World Parliamentary Summit against Hunger and Malnutrition, signed in the Spanish Parliament in 2018.

This declaration was signed by legislators from more than 60 countries, as well as from the European Parliament, PARLATINO, the Parliamentary Front against Hunger in Latin America and the Caribbean, the Inter-Parliamentary Union and the Mercosur Parliament (PARLASUR).

Role of Parliamentarians for Responsible Investment in Agriculture

According to FAO's Programme Officer for Latin America and the Caribbean, Luis Lobo, "Parliamentarians can not only make laws to ensure sustainable investment - thus benefiting communities, vulnerable groups and the environment - but also exercise political control to ensure that policies are implemented," he said.  

Finally, the Cuban deputy Rolando González, secretary of commissions of the PARLATINO, declared that "the alliance PARLATINO - FAO is a good practice and very useful, a vital collaboration that allows to solve together common problems of our countries".