Monday, October 18, 2010

ROC agricultural minister takes center stage at APEC

ROC Council of Agriculture Minister Chen Wu-hsiung underscored measures for dealing with food and climate crises, as well as Taiwan’s contribution in this regard at the first APEC Ministerial Meeting on Food Security, which closed its doors in Niigata, Japan Oct. 17. 

Global warming and high energy prices are posting a tremendous threat to food safety in the Asia-Pacific, while escalating demand for food from emerging countries is further aggravating the problem, Chen pointed out during the two-day event.

In response to this unprecedented challenge, the minister called on APEC member economies to create an emergency food reserve mechanism to ensure safe and steady food supplies in the region.

In compliance with the framework of the World Trade Organization, Chen urged food-supplying countries in the region not to ban food exports at a time of short supply and high prices.
The official also proposed several initiatives aimed at increasing agricultural productivity, shared Taiwan’s experience in managing natural disasters and brought his counterparts up to speed on the ROC government’s policy adjustments to combat the impact of climate change on agriculture.

Chen concluded his speech with a poem he composed specifically for the occasion. Titled “Dance of Niigata,” the ode paid tribute to the birthplace of the famous Koshihikari rice and Japanese sake Daiginjo, and called on APEC agricultural ministers to work together to tackle their collective challenge.

The APEC ministerial meeting saw 21 senior officials and representatives issue a joint Niigata Declaration on APEC Food Safety and propose 62 action plans to promote the sustainable development of agriculture and facilitate sector-wide investment, trade and markets. (THN)

Write to Meg Chang at
Source: Taiwan Today

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