Abu-Ghazaleh Discusses Methods of Food Sustainability at UN
What we need are business initiatives rather than assistance policies and advice – Abu-Ghazaleh
NEW YORK, September 24, 2008, Mr. Talal Abu-Ghazaleh, in his capacity as the Vice Chair of the United Nations Global Alliance on ICT and Development (GAID), has called on governments and leaders of the private sector worldwide to consider establishing a food fund, funded by some of the Official Development Assistance (ODA) contribution, for the purpose of investing in ICT-enabled food production facilities.
In roundtable discussions on the role of technological innovations in addressing the food problem, held at the UN headquarters in New York today, Abu-Ghazaleh added that what is required even more urgently than aid is assistance in developing sustainable and feasible for-profit projects involving land owners, government, investors and other stakeholders, bringing together all the ICT-based needed resources.
Mr. Abu-Ghazaleh – the only member of the Arab business sector participating in the meetings that include state and business leaders – went on to say “What we need are business initiatives rather than assistance policies and advice, rather ICT-based implementations to convert these lands to become food producers for local consumption and export.”
He elaborated that through his professional work, he knew of many success stories that were result of small and large projects with the right leadership rather than the right assistance, citing numerous examples in that regard.
Abu-Ghazaleh mentioned the efforts his establishment, the Talal Abu-Ghazaleh Organization, is exerting in this field and its cooperation with governments and businesses. He concluded his statements by raising questions on key issues that need to be explored.
Secretary General of the United Nations, H.E. Ban Ki-moon opened the first UN Private Sector Forum on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and Food Sustainability. The Forum provides an unprecedented opportunity for the business leaders to dialogue with the heads of states, civil society and heads of UN agencies on the Millennium Development Goals and food sustainability.
The Forum will feature around seven roundtables discussing: Water Access and Management; Agricultural Inputs and Infrastructure; Financial Mechanisms and Risk Management Instruments; Nutrition; Energy and Biofuels; the Role of Technological Innovations; and the Job Creation for Low-Income Populations.