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IFAD calls for more investment in rural development

  • Published at 04:36 pm February 12th, 2020
ifad president
In this file photo taken on October 30, 2018 President of The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) Gilbert Houngbo poses at IFAD headquarters in Rome AFP

The agency has $200 billion ongoing programs in the world, including 34 projects worth $2.3 billion in Bangladesh.

The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), a specialized United Nations agency to address hunger and poverty, has urged its 177 member countries to increase investment in rural development so that its goal of improving world's marginal people's lives and eradicating hunger by 2030 can be fulfilled.

The call was made at ongoing IFAD Governing Council meeting that began on Tuesday at the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) headquarters in Rome of Italy. 

"The elimination of hunger and extreme poverty is still beyond our reach, it is like an abstraction, like a distant mirage," said IFAD President Gilbert Houngbot.

"Extreme weather, conflict, fragility, and migration are further triggering the difficulties, especially threatening our food system. We need to invest more in the rural people who grow our food," he added. 

He stated that small farmers were producing half of all the world's food calories using 30% of the world's farmlands. 

"However, they had to survive with hunger for poverty despite being the producers of the food," said Houngbot.

"We have just 10 years in our hand to reach our global targets of eradicating the extreme poverty and hunger, for which we need gearing up our investments," he said and added that government and private sector funding were also crucial there.

Apart from IFAD president, representatives from member countries were present in the council meeting. 

Meanwhile, the IFAD was planning a $30 billion new fund-program for the rural development over the next 10 years. 

The organization has $200 billion ongoing programs throughout the world, including 34 projects worth $2.3 billion in Bangladesh.

According to the UN agency, about 820 million people across the world pass their days with hunger, and the number is on the rise. 

The weakening of global economy is the main reason behind this, it believes.

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