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Eye of Riyadh
Business & Money | Saturday 30 December, 2023 1:20 am |
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UAE Farmers Council discusses initiatives to strengthen sustainability of agricultural sector

Mariam bint Mohammed Almheiri, Minister of Climate Change and the Environment, chaired the ninth meeting of the Farmers' Council, to review the latest developments in the national agricultural sector and to discuss the Ministry’s initiatives to promote its sustainable growth.

 

The meeting also focused on identifying the needs of the farmers to increase domestic productivity and thereby optimise imports.

 

Mariam Almheiri said the UAE leadership places utmost importance on supporting farmers to enhance the sustainability of the agricultural and food sector, ensure national food security and address climate change.

 

She said, “The transformation of the agricultural sector to make it more sustainable was a top priority for the UAE during the recent COP28 held in Dubai. This is underpinned by the 'COP28 UAE Declaration on Sustainable Agriculture, Resilient Food Systems and Climate Action' being endorsed by 159 countries. These countries have a population of over 6.2 billion people, with 530 million farmers, and account for 77 percent of all the food we eat as well as 83 percent of all emissions from food systems.”

 

Almheiri said that one of the key goals of the UAE in the coming years is to make agricultural systems more sustainable and climate-smart, and that the Ministry will support farmers to enhance agricultural productivity and conserve natural resources.

 

She underlined the significance of maintaining open channels of communication with farmers to address their requirements.

 

She stressed the need for collective efforts by the government, the private sector, and all other stakeholders to promote the sustainability of the national farms and create new economic prospects for farmers.

 

The meeting, held in Fujairah, was attended by several high-ranking officials including Mohammed Saeed Al Nuaimi, Acting Undersecretary of the Ministry, Mohammed Mousa Alameeri, Assistant Undersecretary for the Food Diversity Sector, and Shaikha Ahmed Al Ali, Acting Assistant Undersecretary for the Regions Sector.

 

The meeting was also attended by representatives of farmers who have experience and knowledge of the UAE’s agricultural areas, as well as district managers, and the secretariat of the Farmers’ Council.

 

The participants reviewed the progress of the recommendations made during the earlier meeting. They discussed the latest updates of the initiative aimed at promoting the sustainability of national farms as well as the volume of local purchases and the increase in the number of farmers who have benefitted from the initiative.

 

The meeting took decisions regarding the registration of national farms, leveraging marketing opportunities for local agricultural products, and adding new entities to the list of contractors to enhance their contributions to local purchases.

 

The meeting discussed the farmer support program for 2023, which aims to coordinate farmer representatives to support productive farmers. The number of beneficiaries of the Production Input Support Program has increased from 694 in 2022 to 1,140 in 2023.

 

During the meeting, Almheiri honoured a number of members of the Farmers' Council for their outstanding and dedicated efforts during their membership in the Council.

 

The honorees included Ahmed Hamdan Al Malik, representative of the Northern Agricultural Area, Abdullah Khalfan Al Shuraiqi, representative of the Northern Agricultural Area; Hamed Al Hamed, representative of the Western Agricultural Area - Abu Dhabi; Hassan Juma Al Zaabi, representative of the Western Agricultural Area - Abu Dhabi; Rashid Mohammed Saif Al Atar, representative of the Eastern Agricultural Area – Fujairah; Rashid Muhair Bakhit Al Ketbi, representative of the Central Agricultural Area – Sharjah; Abdullatif Mohammed Al Banna, representative of the Central Agricultural Area – Dubai; Humaid Obaid Mohammed Al Zaabi, representative of the Central Agricultural Area - Ajman.

 

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