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Pakistani delegation is introduced to Brazilian Zero Hunger experiences

Mr. Sikandar Hayat Khan Bosan, minister of National Food Security and Research, during the CONSEA meeting in Brasília

Photo: WFP/Isadora Ferreira

From 27 May to 6 June, a delegation from Pakistan was in Brazil for a study visit organized by the Centre of Excellence against Hunger. The focus of the study visit is getting to know the Brazilian experiences and the programmes related to the Zero Hunger strategy in Brazil, since Pakistan is implementing its National Zero Hunger Programme. The delegation was led by Mr. Sikandar Hayat Khan Bosan, minister of National Food Security and Research, who made a presentation about the Pakistani programme during a CONSEA meeting.

During the first week of the visit, the delegation was given a presentation about the work of the Centre of Excellence and a food security in the world overview, besides en initial presentation about the Zero hunger Strategy in Brazil. The delegation presented an overview of the food security in Pakistan, highlighting the main challenges for the implementation of its National Zero Hunger Programme.

On the following day, the delegation participated in meeting of the National Council for Food and Nutrition Security (CONSEA), composed by members of the Brazilian government and civil society. They were able to witness the ordinary discussion of the Council, and minister Sikandar Hayat Khan Bosan was invited to speak briefly about food security in Pakistan and the cooperation with Brazil. In his speech, the minister highlighted the importance of agriculture to the Pakistani economy, including employment, income generation and international commerce. He also emphasized the importance of the work conducted by the Centre of Excellence for the promotion of social development in developing countries.

The delegation met with representatives of the Brazilian Food Supply Company (CONAB) and the Brazilian Company for Agricultural Research (EMBRAPA), to discuss their participation in the Brazilian Zero Hunger Strategy. The field visit took place in Planaltina, a small town near Brasília, so they could see the production and storage of grains, learn about the different modalities of investment in agriculture, and talk to representatives of smallholder farmers’ cooperatives about supplying produce for governmental programmes. On Saturday, the delegation had its first planning session, to begin discussions about their action plan.

Seminar on institutional food procurement
On the following week, the delegation went to Porto Alegre to participate in the international seminar "Institutional Purchase + Local Development". The event had the purpose of discussing the importance of governmental food procurement from smallholder farmers for the development of agriculture. The seminar was held by the Ministry of Social Development and Fight against Hunger (MDS), with support from the World Food Programme (WFP) Centre of Excellence against Hunger, in partnership with the United Kingdom Department for International Development (DFID) and the Government of the State of Rio Grande do Sul.

This visit was a follow up of the Pakistan-Brazil Seminar on Food Security and Poverty Alleviation, held in Islamabad in December 2012, when Pakistan found many similarities with the Brazilian scenario. Brazil participated in this seminar through the Centre of Excellence. “The Zero Hunger Programme unfortunately could not make much progress last year and now we are looking into developing and implementing it. This is a learning visit to see how Brazil implemented its Zero Hunger Strategy and we are delighted to be part of this interaction,” said minister Sikandar Hayat Khan Bosan during his time in Brasilia.

The whole overview of social safety nets they could have whilst in Brazil was key for Pakistan to further develop their ZHP. The programme is a five year plan that aims to reach a total of 61 million food insecure people across the country, with a total cost of 16 billion US dollars. Like Brazil, Pakistan has different challenges to address in regards to tackling hunger and investing in agriculture innovation.

 

To see more pictures of the study visit, see our album on Facebook.