Image: UNDP Uzbekistan

26 May, TASHKENT: The Ministry of Agriculture of the Republic of Uzbekistan, the United Nations Development Programme and the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) have organized the first National Dialogue in preparation for the UN Global Summit on Food Systems, which will be held in September 2021 in parallel with the UN General Assembly in New York.

National processes, dialogues and consultations in preparation for the UN Global Summit on Food Systems have already begun in more than 100 countries around the world. Regional dialogues have also been arranged with the participation of international partners.

On 25 May the Regional Dialogue on the transformation of food systems in Europe and Central Asia video conference was organized by the UN Forum on Sustainable Standards at the intercountry level. At this conference Uzbekistan was represented by the Minister of Agriculture of the Republic of Uzbekistan Jamshid Khodjaev.

The upcoming Fall Global Summit aims to kickstart action to make progress on the Sustainable Development Goals, each of which relies to some degree on healthier, more sustainable and equitably functioning food systems. This summit will have five goals, being to ensure access to safe and nutritious food for all, establish transition to reasonable consumption, encourage sustainable production, promote a level playing field, and provide resistance to vulnerability, shocks and stress. (More about the Summit: https://www.un.org/ru/food-systems-summit/about).

UN Secretary General António Guterres came up with an initiative to hold the Global Food Summit in 2021, and one of the first world leaders to show support for it was the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan Shavkat Mirziyoyev at the 75th session of the UN General Assembly,” said the Deputy Minister of Agriculture for accelerated digitalization of the agrarian sector Kakhramon Yuldashev.

“Climate change, which is of global importance today, and food security of the population in the context of the pandemic over the past two years, have shown that this is a strategic issue for any country. As with all other states, food security plays an important role in ensuring an independent economy, socio-economic and political stability of our country. In this regard, the Republic of Uzbekistan is taking the necessary organizational, legal, economic and social decisions, as well as systematic measures to implement them."

The first National Dialogue held in Tashkent on 26 May 2021 was attended by members of interested ministries and departments, as well as representatives of international and public organizations.

Dialogues like today's, conducted by UN member states, are the main component of the 2021 Food System Summit process and an effective format for involving all stakeholders including legislators, producers, distributors, farmers' associations, the private sector and consumers,” stressed the UN Resident Coordinator in Uzbekistan Helena Fraser. “It is important that everyone redefines their role in food systems for transformative action towards a healthier and sustainable planet. As a contribution to the work of the summit, the Ministry of Agriculture of the Republic of Uzbekistan, as an authorized body on behalf of the Government of the Republic of Uzbekistan, with the support of UNDP and FAO, will hold a number of national dialogues on food systems in the cities of Nukus and Namangan, in order to formulate a national strategy aimed at ensuring sustainable food systems."

UNDP Resident Representative in Uzbekistan Matilda Dimovska added at the National Dialogue - Consistent with the course of the Government of Uzbekistan, which has committed itself to increasing productivity and creating jobs in the agricultural sector, the UNDP office also prioritizes the development of sustainable agriculture through promoting new technologies, green financing and the creation of an enabling environment, paying particular attention to the management of water resources upon which all crops depend.”

The results of the regional and national dialogues will be included in the report of the UN Global Summit on Food Systems.

“The national dialogue in preparation for the UN Summit on Food Systems seeks to respect different opinions and views, encourage collective research, and identify new means of collaboration. This dialogue will bring together partners and stakeholders on one platform to take action that will lead to a better future, as well as providing an opportunity for those whose voices are rarely heard to take part in negotiations. Indeed, according to the goals of the upcoming Summit, we must all work together to change the patterns of production and consumption of food products used in the world, and our attitudes towards them," said Sherzod Umarov, Deputy Representative of FAO in Uzbekistan.

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