PCFS Statement on the High Level Forum IV on Aid Effectiveness Nov. 29 to Dec. 1, 2011, Busan, South Korea

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Advancing the Agenda of Agriculture and Rural Development in Development Effectiveness

PCFS Statement on the High Level Forum IV on Aid Effectiveness Nov. 29 to Dec. 1, 2011, Busan, South Korea.Advancing the Agenda of Agriculture and Rural Development in Development Effectiveness

 

Agriculture despite being a key sector in the development agenda especially of many southern economies remains a missing agenda in high level forums on aid effectiveness. From Rome to Paris to Accra and now in Busan, the inclusion of agriculture in any of the main discourses has yet to be realized.

 

 

Africa and Asia, the top two regions where aid inflows have been highest over the years, continue to face  worsening poverty, malnutrition and hunger. With over a billion people hungry, the rise in food prices that have made this basic necessity even more beyond reach of the world’s poor poses a challenge on how reversals can be made  in the current global agricultural system dominated by giant agro-industrial corporations.

 

Even as smallholder agriculture accounts for nearly 70% of global agricultural production, corporate control is intact with only 10 companies controlling 67% of the world seed market. Private sector participation has taken a strong dimension following global trade and economic policies that legitimize the access and use of developing countries’ resources for corporate profit.

The People’s Coalition on Food Sovereignty, a growing international grassroots network of small food producers and their support groups advocating for people’s rights to determine their own food and agricultural systems, has conducted regional and country consultations in aid and development effectiveness in  Africa and Asia. PCFS thus forwards these recommendations to the HLF IV:

  1. Formulate ARD policies that directly involve grassroots participation, including monitoring of ODA-supported programs;
  2. Re-channel resources to policies that promote land distribution and seed control of small food producers;
  3. Implement rights-based management that directly empower rural communities to participate in the formulation, implementation and monitoring of ARD programs;
  4. Scrap aid policies that support corporate agriculture, GMO production, dumping of toxic inputs and all other forms of tied-aid;
  5. Democratize agricultural research by directly  involving small –scale holders and CSOs working on agro-ecology; and
  6. Exercise full transparency of accountability mechanisms to ensure that rural people are able to seek redress for any negative impact of development programs.

Development effectiveness is about making marked improvements in the quality of life of rural peoples, which ultimately should contribute to poverty eradication. In Busan and beyond, this remains a challenge that needs decisive actions.