PRETORIA. — Agriculture ministers from BRICS countries met in Pretoria yesterday to address the negative effects of climate change on world food security.
The gathering, the third of its kind, will culminate in the signing of a joint declaration which will demonstrate BRICS’ determination to meet the challenges confronting food security.
“We are required to ensure that the decisions we make today impact positively on the continent and the quality of the land we leave for the next generation and their children,” South African Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Minister Tina Joemat- Pettersson said at the conference.
“It is my expectation that we will emerge from this meeting with a shared sense that it was instructive, successful and well worth of the investment and effort we have made to be here.”
Food security is a huge challenge and thus a key priority for the African continent, said Joemat-Pettersson.
She said the meeting will consider and provide leadership on the important matters related to food security.
“Our priority on the continent and in South Africa is to promote sustainable agricultural and food production, which will enable Africa to feed itself and the world,” the minister said.
She urged BRICS countries to urgently and significantly accelerate agricultural and food production, so that people on the continent can enjoy sustainable access to safe, nutritious and affordable food.
BRICS ministers must promote smart, responsible and sustainable agriculture, the minister stressed.
BRICS is an acronym for world’s major emerging markets, namely Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.
“As we consider ‘Negative Effect of Climate Change on World Food Security’, we must remain mindful that, with few exceptions rural women fare worse than rural men and urban men and women against all the Millennium Development Goals indicators,” Joemat- Pettersson said.
This includes areas such as diverse as agriculture, health, education, paid and unpaid work and social protection. — Xinhua.