Webinar: SSC & International Development Cooperation in the Post COVID-19 World: Sustainable Agriculture, 10 September 2020

By September 9, 2020 September 10th, 2020 Events
  • When: 10 September 2020 (14:30-16:00 (Beijing Time)
  • Organized by: Global South-South Development Center Project
  • How to Join: Tencent Meeting (Meeting ID 285 527 580)
  • Meeting Language: Chinese

For his policy brief on the pandemic on 9 June 2020, António Guterres focused on the need to safeguard everyone’s access to food and adequate nutrition: for now, and in the future. Food interconnects with all aspects of our lives: Water • Land • Energy • Culture • Jobs • Technology • Economies • Policies • Families.

“Unless immediate action is taken, it is increasingly clear that there is an impending global food emergency that could have long term impacts on hundreds of millions of children and adults”, he said, in a video message to accompany the launch. Furthermore, soaring unemployment rates, income losses and rising food costs not only jeopardize food access in both developed and developing countries but also have long-term effects on food security. Even in countries with abundant food, there are risks of disruptions in the food supply chain.

The coronavirus is expected to slash the global economic output by $8.5 trillion over the next two years. Estimates suggest that the number of people who could be pushed into extreme poverty in 2020 may reach as high as about 49 million people, with around half of this increase occurring in Sub-Saharan African countries. Were this to happen, the number of people who are acutely food or nutrition insecure will expand rapidly in as little as three months. An additional 130 million people may join the ranks of people living in extreme poverty by 2030. Many of these vulnerable people are themselves involved in food production or food systems-related work to secure their own food access. More than 2 billion small producers, farm laborers, rural workers, and their families, who represent a large proportion of the moderately and severely food insecure, may be disproportionately affected by economic shock.

Besides COVID-19, there are multiple crises threatening food security, including conflicts, climate extremes and desert locusts. It’s high time to rebalance the relationship between food systems and the natural environment by transforming them to work better with nature and for the climate. To realize the SDGs, the global food system needs to be reshaped to be more productive, more inclusive of poor and marginalized populations, environmentally sustainable and resilient, and able to deliver healthy and nutritious diets to all.

We cannot continue thinking of agriculture, the environment, health, poverty and hunger in isolation, world problems are interconnected, and the solutions are intertwined. The current pandemic is a wake-up call to all of us.

How can agriculture become better able to resist major international shocks such as climate change, and health crises such as the COVID-19 pandemic? What are the new characteristics of South-South cooperation in agriculture in the post-COVID-19 era? What will be the focuses of South-South cooperation in agriculture after the COVID-19?

At this critical moment, we need to realize that in a world where economies are fully integrated, only by fighting against the pandemic together can we completely overcome the epidemic and achieve common prosperity. In this context, the Global South-South Development Center Project aims to evolve in pace with the current situation and explore innovative approaches to enhance knowledge exchange and cooperation among its partner institutions via online brainstorming. The webinars will focus on the common concerns to expand ways of thinking and promote awareness-building and experience-sharing in terms of South-South cooperation and international development cooperation.

Session II: South-South Cooperation and International Development Cooperation in the Post COVID-19 World · Sustainable Agriculture

Moderator: Ms. Zhu Li, Deputy Division Chief, Division II of UN Programmes, China International Center for Economic and Technical Exchanges

Speakers:

  • Ms. Jia Yan, Programme Policy Officer, World Food Programme
  • Ms. Wu Jin, Associate Dean of College of Humanities and Development Studies, Executive Dean of College of International Development and Global Agriculture/China Institute for South-South Cooperation in Agriculture at China Agricultural University

Agenda:

  • 4:30-14:40 Opening Remarks
  • 14:40-15:40 Presentations
  • 15:40-15:55 Q & A
  • 15:55-16:00 Concluding Remarks

More awareness-building and experience-sharing webinars on economic development, energy efficiency, environmental protection, etc. will come soon.