New Delhi, Sep 9 :
Closely following India’s decision not to ratify the WTO’s Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA) on the issue of food security, Prime Minister Narendra Modi Tuesday urged the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) to take the lead in protecting interests of the poor and farmers at the World Trade Organisation.
Describing FAO Director General Jose Graziano da Silva, who called on him Tuesday, as one of the champions of the “No Hunger Project” in Brazil, Modi said: “India does not stand in the way of a rule-based global trade agreement, but the country cannot sacrifice the interests and food security of the poor and the farmers.”
Calling on the FAO to take the lead in protecting the interests of the poor and farmers at the WTO, the prime minister sought Da Silva’s participation in addressing the challenges confronting Indian agriculture, especially in capacity-building in food storage.
Modi suggested that “some portion of such capacity addition brought about by the FAO’s efforts through international financial institutions, could be earmarked for the food and nutritional requirements of the poorest countries”.
He also sought FAO’s cooperation in designing a special campaign targeted at women in India, which would highlight ways to improve nutritional value and food habits.
The prime minister further discussed ways and means by which FAO could contribute towards increasing nutritional value in the Mid-Day Meal scheme for school children, enhancing production and protein content of pulses, improving production of oilseeds, enhancing milk productivity, and modernization of fisheries sector in India.