DAR hosts int’l forum on rural dev’t

MANILA Agrarian Reform Secretary John R. Castriciones on Tuesday called on members of the Centre on Integrated Rural Development in Asia and the Pacific (CIRDAP) to share their significant advances in poverty reduction so that others may learn and improve their programs and policy measures.

We may be coming from different countries and that the manifestation of poverty may have different contexts but still we should find value by coordinating our initiatives and experiences, Castriciones said during the opening of an international forum hosted by the Department of Agrarian Reform, in collaboration with CIRDAP, which consists of 15 member countries.

He said CIRDAP members need to discuss relevant themes and concerns, and identify prospects or leads for cooperative action to further the objectives of agriculture, agrarian reform, and rural development.

Being bonded together in a regional inter-governmental body in CIRDAP, the countries of the Asia-Pacific region are facing similar challenges and concerns that require all our governments to find ways to reduce poverty, increase food production in a sustainable manner, and enhance food security to improve the quality of life of our people, Castriciones added.

The event intends to raise awareness on innovative approaches adopted by governments, private sectors, and other stakeholders in support of the promotion of sustainable rural livelihoods in the region.

Agriculture Secretary William Dar and CIRDAP Director General Tevita Boseiwaga Taguinavulao graced the event, along with representatives of the member-countries Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Fiji, India, Indonesia, Iran, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Myanmar, Nepal, Pakistan, the Philippines, Sri Lanka, Thailand, and Vietnam as well as delegates of government agencies, the private sector, non-government and civil society groups, and farmers' organizations and cooperatives.

The forum, with the theme Defining opportunities and pathways for regional collaboration partnership on integrated rural development, will be held in SEDA North Vertis Hotel in Quezon City until September 25. (PR)

Source: Philippines News Agency