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Wednesday, 13 March 2013

EU, FAO: support for nutrition and food security in Malawi

"The EU and the FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations) share the same vision on nutrition and food security, and we will work together to help Malawi, and all of sub-Saharan Africa, tackle this problem”, EU Development Commissioner Andris Piebalgs said ahead of a level visit to Malawi on 5th of March.
During the visit, Andris Piebalgs, and José Graziano da Silva, Director-General of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), met with President Joyce Banda to discuss the country's challenges on nutrition and food security, and are expected to stress the importance of efficient and effective coordination mechanisms between the different ministries in order to ensure food security.
Graziano da Silva belives that Malawi is on the good track to meet the Millennium Development hunger target ('Halve, between 1990 and 2015, the proportion of people who suffer from hunger'), mainly due to its investments of more than 10% of its national budget in agriculture.
In Malawi at present over 47 percent of children are suffering from stunting (when growth is held back due to a lack of access to nutritious food).

In 2012, Commissioner Piebalgs and President Banda signed two agreements. The first, on agriculture, for an amount of €63 million, was designed to strengthen agricultural productivity and expand the area of land under irrigation, doubling household incomes in agriculture and contributing to 6 percent annual growth in Malawi. The second EU contribution of €35 million funds cash transfers to extremely poor households.
The EU is a major donor in Malawi, having allocated €605 million under the current European Development Fund (EDF) 2008-2013.
FAO’s collaboration with Malawi includes the design and implementation of policies and programmes to improve agriculture, forestry and fisheries.

Source: FAO, European Commission