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UN okays PHL initiative for declaration of 2014 as 'Int'l Year of Family Farming'


The UN General Assembly formally passed the Philippine initiative for the declaration of the "International Year of Family Farming, 2014."

The Department of Foreign Affairs said on Tuesday that the UN approved the Philippines’ initiative at the plenary session of the UN General Assembly on Dec. 22.

"This was an initiative which the Philippines initially pushed at the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) conference last June 2011, and at that meeting, the FAO called on the United Nations to declare 2014 as the International Year of Family Farming, in recognition of the fact that there are more than 1 billion people in the world working as farmers in plots less than five acres in size, and that the lack of support for them has fueled massive migration to cities, with all its impacts for food security and environmental sustainability," Philippine Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Ambassador Libran Cabactulan said.

"Consequently, the declaration is intended to give strong support for FAO and other organizations' initiatives to develop means to ensure prosperous and sustainable family agriculture development in rural and fishing areas in all continents, and especially in the developing countries. Following the passage of the FAO Resolution last 2 July 2011, the Philippine Mission in New York thus spearheaded the successful passage of this Resolution before the UN General Assembly, and we thank our friends and partners for making this possible," he said.

The Resolution obtained broad support from many countries in the developing world, with over 36 co-sponsors from countries in Asia, Latin America, Africa, Europe and Oceania in joining the Philippines in promoting the passage of this Resolution.

"With this Resolution, we hope for countries and regions to join together in identifying the special needs of their family farmers, and develop ways and means to resolve ongoing challenges for family farmers, such as the difficulty of access at fair prices to resources and production, including access to land; aging of the rural populations and scarce incorporation of young people in agriculture; effective recognition of the essential role of women in agriculture, and lack of participation of small farmers and fishermen in the making of decisions and policies," Ambassador Cabactulan said.

By Faye P. Velasco -PNA)

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