HRH Prince El Hassan inaugurates Jordan International Agricultural Forum

Dead Sea Deputizing for His Majesty King Abdullah II, HRH Prince El Hassan bin Talal inaugurated on Wednesday at the King Hussein Bin Talal Convention Center in the Dead Sea region the first Jordan International Agricultural Forum organized by the Ministry of Agriculture with the participation of delegations representing more than 60 countries and organizations.

In his speech, Prince El Hassan said that priorities must be defined and the human resources in the Arab world must be mobilized and good governance should be promoted to achieve human security in all its aspects and without discrimination.

His Royal Highness underlined the need to establish a regional knowledge base based on geography, geology and geophysics, as well as formulating regional, coordinated and integrated policies away from politics to realize sustainable development objectives.

Development policies and programs must be built on strengthening the relationship between food security and social protection to ensure an equitable distribution of food, he said.

Prince El Hassan said he hopes that some regional bodies will evolve into a social economic council representing the region, calling on Arab and regional organizations and bodies to provide their research and neutral studies on poverty, unemployment and development of human resources.

He emphasized the importance of increasing the productive capacity of rural communities, investing in their skills and educating their people, pointing out the need to enable farmers to use the latest agricultural methods and techniques to improve their incomes and production as a basic right.

He called for communicating with people, strengthening the social productive networks of civil society, and boosting the partnership between the political, economic and civil stakeholders to achieve social, environmental and economic sustainability.

Prince El Hassan called for adopting policies to achieve food security, including strengthening regional cooperation among Arab countries, preserving biodiversity, enhancing food security and bolstering self-sufficiency among other things.

Minister of Agriculture Khalid Hniefat said the forum complements regional and international efforts aimed at improving food security, fighting hunger and prioritizing agriculture in public policy.

Director-General of the Arab Organization for Agricultural Development, Ibrahim Adam Ahmed El Dukhiri, said that the organization seeks to achieve agricultural development and improve pan-Arab food security, stressing that the organization strives to help Arab countries implement the components of the emergency food security program.

FAO Assistant Director-General and Regional Representative for the Near East and North Africa (NENA) Abdessalam Ould Ahmed thanked Jordan for holding the forum, which offers an opportunity to highlight Jordan’s efforts to improve food security, pointing out that there are vast opportunities to invest in high-value crops which have high economic and social returns.

The two-day forum will discuss working papers on food security and sustainable agriculture in light of water scarcity as well as climate change, domestic and external investment, marketing, agricultural transformation and job creation.

Source: Jordan News Agency