19.10.2009 06:10

UN Food Chief: Economic Crisis Requires Swift Action On Hunger

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19.10.2009 06:10

“The current [economic] crisis is historically unprecedented in several ways,” Diouf said in the speech at the U.N.’s Food and Agriculture Organization’s headquarters in Rome. “As developing countries are more financially
and commercially integrated in the world economy, a drop in the global demand or supply and in credit availability had immediate repercussions on them,” he said.

Diouf said an additional 105 million people had been pushed into hunger as the crisis had “reduced the incomes and employment opportunities of the poor and significantly lowered their access to food”. The FAO chief said there are now some 1.02 billion undernourished people worldwide - one-sixth of the global population.

He suggested governments should increase agriculture’s share in official development assistance to its 1980 level of 17%, up from 5% today. Heads of state and government are set to meet in Rome Nov. 16-18 at a U.N. FAO World Summit on Food Security. The summit’s aim is to find ways for poor countries to boost their agricultural productivity
and improve the management of their food resources.

CME Group

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