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Minister of Agriculture Welcomes New Director of FAO to Cambodia

PHNOM PENH: The Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, Veng Sakhon, received a courtesy call and introduction from the new Director of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations (UN), Rebekah Bell, at the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries on Tuesday, 1 March.

During the meeting, Director Rebekah Bell expressed her deep gratitude to the Minister of Agriculture and the leaders of all other Ministries, units and professional officers in all sub-sectors, for support and cooperation in making the FAO Mission in the Cambodia a success. She said that some agricultural development projects have already been implemented, which are hoped to contribute to the development of the agricultural sector in Cambodia to grow in accordance with the policy that the Royal Government and the Ministry has planned to contribute to raising living standards, increasing income, and creating more work opportunities to increase productivity, ensure food security and nutrition, adopt new agricultural technologies to change climate change resilience habits, increase production and economic efficiency.

In this first meeting, Minister Veng Sakhon warmly welcomed Rebekah Bell’s mission in Cambodia and through her, he thanked the FAO for its continued support, responsibility and better cooperation with the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries to implement projects prioritizing the growth and development of Cambodia's agricultural sector, which has bore significant results by promoting the improvement, training and dissemination of modern agricultural techniques to farmers. The Minister said this is the necessary capital and solid foundation to strengthening and expanding production capacity, ensuring both quantity and quality in response to the context of the free market, competition, climate change, environment and innovation, in accordance with the agricultural policies and plans for 2019-2023 and the context of the Covid-19 pandemic and living in the new normal. Regarding the new FAO Director’s five-year term, the Minister stated that the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries will wait to provide better cooperation to ensure the successful implementation of programs.

On this occasion of the meeting, the two sides discussed key issues that are fundamental to the development of the agricultural sector and agreed to prioritize: building infrastructure, supporting the strengthening of processing capacity through the private sector, small and medium enterprises (SMEs), agricultural marketing systems (crops, vegetables, animals and fish), cold chain systems, development of sub-sectors of aquaculture and forestry, agricultural input to improve production standards and ensure quality and safety to meet the needs of the export market and maintain the growth of the family economy and the national economy.

It should be noted that in the near future, the new FAO office in Cambodia will be relocated to the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries.

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