G20: Matera Declaration reflects Indian concern for farmer welfare, agri-diversity, says EAM Jaishankar

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Matera [Italy], June 30 (ANI): Expressing gratitude to Italy for highlighting food security at the G-20 summit, External Affairs Minister (EAM) S Jaishankar on Tuesday said that the Matera Declaration reflects the Indian concern on issues including the welfare of small and medium farmers, and recognising agri-diversity.

“Appreciate Italy for highlighting food security. The Matera Declaration reflects the Indian concern for the welfare of small and medium farmers, promoting local food cultures and recognising agri-diversity,” EAM Jaishankar tweeted. “Livelihood, health, digital access and climate action should now constitute the new developmental priorities.”
In an earlier tweet, Jaishankar said that India will step up its digital cooperation in health, education, and capacity building. “We will work closely on health and food security, responding to the Covid impact. Our development projects will continue to progress, especially in power, water, agriculture and IT.”

The G20 Foreign Affairs Ministers’ Meeting was held in Matera, under Italian Presidency, followed by a joint meeting of the Foreign Affairs and Development Ministers. Global governance and the sustainable development of the African continent were at the heart of the Foreign Affairs Ministerial Meeting.

The ministers underlined the need to avoid the “nationalisation” of interventions and to develop coordinated responses to major global challenges, such as post-pandemic recovery, international trade, climate action, as well as ecological and digital transitions.

In line with Italy’s attention to the African continent, the ministers reiterated the importance of supporting Africa in fighting inequality, enhancing the entrepreneurship of women and youth, and fostering the green and digital transitions.

The first joint meeting of Foreign Affairs and Development Ministers ended with the adoption of the “Matera Declaration”, which calls upon the international community to build inclusive and resilient food chains and ensure adequate nutrition for all, in line with the “Zero Hunger” goal set for 2030.

In the Matera Declaration, the G20 ministers recognized that poverty alleviation, food security and sustainable food systems, are key to ending hunger, encouraging social cohesion and community development, reducing socio-economic inequalities, and promoting overall inclusive economic growth and sustainable development.

They also called for implementing effective actions for the empowerment of women and youth in the rural-urban continuum. The ministers also stressed on enhancing social-protection measures and programs, with a focus on people living in vulnerable situations, of whom large shares depend on the agriculture and food sector for their livelihoods.

The declaration called for increasing catalytic investments for food security, nutrition, and sustainable food systems and territorial development, as part of the substantial COVID-19 emergency funding and longer-term national recovery plans and packages.

Furthermore, it focussed on accelerating the adaptation of agriculture and food systems to climate change, as increased climate variability and extreme weather events impact agriculture output and are among the forces driving the rise in global hunger while recognizing the importance of sustainable agriculture. (ANI)

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