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Afghanistan and FAO: Achievements and Success Stories










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    Sri Lanka and FAO: Achievements and Success Stories 2011
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    Upon achieving independence from the United Kingdom, the country of Ceylon became a member nation of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) in 1948 and development support to Ceylon’s agriculture and livestock sectors dates back to 1953. With UNDP support, FAO was actively involved in providing technical assistance to the country which was renamed “Sri Lanka” in 1972. In 1979, a full FAO Representation was established within the UN compound in Colombo. As UNDP support for FAO executed projects diminished in 1990, FAO has continued an active supporting role through trust fund arrangements and with the Technical Cooperation Programme to address government needs and priorities within the sectors of agriculture, animal husbandry, fisheries and forestry. Since 1979, some 350 projects and programmes have been implemented with FAO support amounting to nearly 300 million USD, while many thousands of Sri Lankans have benefited from training in-country and abroad and m any have been supported to participate in international conferences around the world. The government and the people of Sri Lanka have significantly benefited from the technical expertise and support provided by FAO over the past half a century. Consequently FAO has a high degree of respect within the country and the government has displayed a considerable level of trust for FAO as the Representation was requested in 2010 to take a lead for agricultural livelihood reestablishment for conflict dis placed people in the north including full provision of seed paddy for the current planting season. As the 26 year-long conflict with the Tamil Tigers ended in 2009, a new planning exercise is now underway between the government and FAO to prioritize needs within each mandated sector for the next five years. FAO maintain constant and regular contact with government officials and has close partnerships with the UN Country Team and donors to assist the government to address their stated needs and p riorities within FAO’s mandated areas. Toward this end, FAO co-chairs the sector working group on agriculture and food security with WFP, and is currently also responsible for the coordination of agriculture rehabilitation in the north. Finally, FAO chairs the poverty pillar of the UNDAF which encompasses FAO’s mandated sectors. Looking ahead, FAO’s programmes in Sri Lanka will continue to expand in 2011 and beyond, with some 100 staff at present based in 10 different locations.
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    Maldives and FAO: Achievements and Success Stories 2011
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    Maldives became a member of FAO in 1971 and was accredited to the FAO Representative’s office in Sri Lanka in 1979. The economy of Maldives has grown rapidly since 1975, making impressive socio-economic progress when measured by improvements in socio-economic indicators and poverty reduction. The government has played a central role in the rapid growth of fisheries and tourism, which are the main foreign exchange earners of the country. Food security in Maldives has unique features as the countr y depends on imports for most of its food needs, including rice, which is the country’s staple grain. Outside of Malé, fishing and subsistence agriculture are the main sources of food security and livelihoods for the vast majority of the people. The agricultural sector of Maldives is based primarily on coconuts and other tree crops with only some 4 000 hectares under other agriculture crops. In response to the current food and fuel crisis, Maldives is integrating food security into national plan ning. It has removed tariffs on imported food items, agricultural inputs and fuel and is intensifying and diversifying agriculture and fisheries. Maldives is also promoting and strengthening small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in both these sectors, while providing financial support for small growers and fishers in rural areas. Climate change is central to all discussions about food security in Maldives, because it is adversely affecting crops and fish stocks and reducing land area as the sea le vel rises. Developing agriculture as the third pillar of the economy, after tourism and fishing, is one of the priorities of the 7th National Development Plan, which is being implemented at present. The government is working with FAO and IFAD as well as the private sector to develop agriculture by introducing new and innovative techniques and technology that would make farming into a vehicle for commercially viable sustainable rural development. Since the early 1970’s, FAO has provided assistanc e to the government through national and regional programmes to address the needs and priorities of the country. Direct support from FAO in the form of targeted Technical Cooperation Programme (TCP) projects has totalled US$9.5 million. Additionally, Maldives has been a recipient of support from numerous regional TCP projects. The country also received substantial amounts of emergency assistance for post tsunami recovery in 2005 and 2006. Donors supporting development through FAO in Maldives inc lude: Japan, Finland, Sweden, Belgium, EC, Germany, Saudi Arabia, and the Netherlands.
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    Myanmar and FAO: Achievements and Success Stories 2011
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    Myanmar economy did not undergo significant structural changes, even though it experienced different political and economical systems since it independence in 1948. The country is still an agro-based country in which agriculture sector is the backbone of the economy and main stay of rural economy. Some 20 percent of Myanmar’s 48 million people suffer from undernourishment, confirming that the nation has significant work ahead of it if it is to achieve the Millennium Development Goal of reducing the proportion of people suffering from hunger by half by the year 2015. Life expectancy is low at 57 years of age, while child mortality rates are high at about 107 per 1 000 live births. Agriculture in Myanmar is the most important sector of the country’s economy, contributing 42 percent to the country’s gross domestic product (GDP). Agricultural exports are valued at $379 million a year. The sector supports 70 percent of Myanmar’s labour force. Rice is the major crop, covering about 60 percen t of the country’s total cultivated land area. Rice accounts for 97 percent of total food grain production by weight, and it is one of the main reasons that more than 98 percent of Myanmar’s total water use goes to agriculture. Myanmar became a member of FAO on 11 September 1947, and an FAO Representative Office was opened in 1978. Over the past 30 years, FAO has provided assistance through some 100 national projects and many regional field projects that support crops, livestock, fisheries and f orestry efforts. Projects also cover agriculture and rural investment planning, census, statistics, agricultural research, food and industrial crops, crop processing, food technology, plant protection, and animal health with a total budget of $193 million since 1978. FAO projects in Myanmar are funded from the Organization’s own resources under the Technical Cooperation Programme (TCP) while others are funded through donor contributions (e.g. Australia, Austria, Italy, Japan, PricewaterhouseCoop ers Charitable Foundation, Sweden, UK-DFID and the UN Central Emergency Response Fund.). The country further benefits from a number of FAO assisted regional and global programmes, including emergency operations and rehabilitation programmes, and the Emergency Prevention System for Transboundary Animal and Plant Pests and Diseases (EMPRES).

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