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Wednesday, October 15, 2014, 20:10

China pledges $50m for food safety

By Xinhua
 China pledges $50m for food safety

Chinese Prime Minister Li Keqiang delivers a speech during his meeting at the Food and Agriculture Organisation FAO ahead of World Food Day, on Oct 15, 2014 at the FAO headquarters in Rome. (AFP PHOTO / TIZIANA FABI)

ROME - Visiting Chinese Premier Li Keqiang said Wednesday that his country will donate $50 million in the next five years to the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).

Li announced the decision in a speech at the FAO headquarters in Rome during a visit to the UN organ on the eve of World Food Day, which falls on Oct 16 every year.

The new fund from the Chinese government, said the premier, will be used to promote South-South cooperation.

As the biggest developing country in the world, China will always be an active force in maintaining food security, and is ready to work with other countries to create a hunger-free and poverty-free world with sustained development, he added.

Food is a fundamental right of human existence, Li said, hunger and poverty remain hidden crises, which still pose great threats to the human society, despite that many countries have made remarkable achievements in agriculture.

More than 800 million people in the world are still faced with lack of food or malnutrition, Li warned, urging the international community to strengthen agricultural cooperation and pay great attention to developing countries, particularly the least-developed ones.

Li called for other countries to reduce trade protection, supply the least-developed countries with technologies and fund for developing agriculture, and further increase agricultural production and the level of food security.

China in recent years established agricultural technology demonstration centers, labs and technology transfer centers in nearly 100 countries and organized more than 30,000 professional visits to those countries for technological training, he said.

China is willing to share agricultural technologies, equipment and the idea of developing agriculture with all other countries, the premier said, promising to offer agricultural assistance to other developing countries under the framework of the South-South cooperation.

FAO Director-General Jose Graziano da Silva thanked the Chinese government for its additional contribution to South-South cooperation, which is aimed mainly at improving world food security.

It is widely recognized that China's achievements in food security and poverty reduction have made huge contribution to this global cause.

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