Food Security: EU Supports G8 Initiative for a "New Alliance" with Partner Countries, Donors and the Private Sector

May 18, 2012, 13:02 ET from Delegation of the European Union to the United States

WASHINGTON, May 18, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The European Commission welcomes the "New Alliance to improve Food and nutrition security" launched in Washington, DC today, on the eve of the G8 Summit. The European Union has been an active partner in the preparation of the "New Alliance" which aims at boosting productivity, domestic and international private sector investments and supporting innovation and technology in Africa.

It will support it as part of its action to tackle hunger and poverty, food security, nutrition and agricultural development. The "New Alliance" gathers together donors, partner countries and the private sector in a joint effort to lift 50 million people out of poverty in the next ten years. The meeting also took stock of achievements since the G8 Summit in L'Aquila in 2009, where the European Commission improved on its pledge of 3.8 billion euros by delivering it sooner than originally forecast – over two instead of three years.

"The European Union is at the forefront of the fight against hunger, as demonstrated by our speedy delivery on the commitments we made at the L'Aquila G8 Summit in 2009," said EU Commissioner for International Cooperation, Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Response, Kristalina Georgieva, and EU Development Commissioner, Andris Piebalgs. "During the food crises which hit the Horn of Africa and the Sahel the EU has provided substantial and swift support to help the worst affected people. Since then we have launched initiatives to assist the affected countries to prepare better for disasters and make them more resilient.  We are confident that, by making donors and the private sector work together, we can help tackle the root causes of hunger and eradicate hunger. The EU will actively support the New Alliance and ensure that all new initiatives benefit primarily small farmers and women."

The New Alliance will promote private sector investments in agriculture by improving the business environment and explore ways to reduce risk through providing better legal and administrative conditions for investors.

The European Commission welcomes the fact that it also includes support of the implementation of the Voluntary Guidelines on Land Tenure (VGLT) and the Principles of Responsible Agriculture Investment (PRAI) in developing countries, which was adopted by the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) on May 11. The EU intends supporting actions in the area of risk management and agricultural research, such as improved soil and pest management, better seed varieties and nutrition.

Food security and agriculture have been identified as priority sectors for EU aid in the EU new development policy "Agenda for Change." It also recognises the key role of the private sector.  The EU therefore welcomes the focus of this year's summit in involving private sector actors.

For more information, please see:
Further Background: 
IP/12/480 - The European Union at the G8 summit in Camp David "Acting together"
MEMO/12/357 - The European Union at the G8 summit in Camp David: Questions and Answers
Website of DG Development and Cooperation – EuropeAid
Website of the EU Development Commissioner, Andris Piebalgs
Agenda for Change & @EUintheUS

SOURCE Delegation of the European Union to the United States