Launch of IFAD’s China Rural Development Report – advocating for food systems transformation for rural prosperity

– The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), in collaboration with the China Agricultural Policy Center at Peking University, today launched the IFAD Rural Development Report 2021, during a virtual event.

The 2021 flagship report focuses on transforming food systems for rural prosperity. It describes global issues that affect the sustainability of food systems and provides recommendations on how to make food systems environmentally, socially and economically sustainable.

IFAD’s cooperation with China prioritizes supporting China’s rural revitalization strategy and promoting common prosperity for farmers in rural areas. “This report focuses on how rural people can benefit from food system transformation and truly address the issue of food security,” said Han Bin, deputy director general of the International Financial Cooperation Department of the Chinese Ministry of Finance. Finance. “This is particularly relevant at a time when the global process of poverty reduction has been set back by COVID-19 and more than 800 million people face hunger,” he added.

“The report is an effective response to the UN Food Systems Summit in 2021, making an important contribution to achieving the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs),” said Boya Emeritus Professor Wang Jinxia. at the College of Modern Agriculture, Peking University and Director of the Chinese Center for Agricultural Policy Research.

The occasion was an opportunity to share the report more widely and discuss the topics of the report from an international and Chinese perspective.

“The report highlights the importance of focusing investment and policy change on rural food value chains to make adequate and nutritious food accessible to all,” said Jyotsna Puri, Associate Vice President of the Strategy Department and IFAD knowledge.

“It also highlights that we need to ensure that food systems do not harm the environment and that food producers can earn a decent income,” she added.

In his keynote address, Huang Jikun, from the distinguished think tank China Center for Agricultural Policy Research at Peking University, pointed out that “innovative institutions, policies and investments are key driving forces for improving food security and promote greener agriculture. Innovative public investments will drive the development of a rapid, inclusive and greener transformation of food systems”.

Distinguished speakers and video messages from IFAD officials, Chinese government officials, academic researchers and members of the private sector also contributed to the debate.

Jianmin Xie, adviser to the International Cooperation Department of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs, highlighted China’s strategic priorities to make the food system more environmentally efficient and beneficial to rural people. He stressed the importance of “ensuring food security, promoting the reduction of agricultural carbon emissions and consolidating the good results of China’s poverty alleviation through rural revitalization”.

During the panel discussion, Shenggen Fan, Full Professor, College of Economics and Management, China Agricultural University; Xiande Li, professor at the Institute of Agricultural Economics, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences; Joachim von Braun, director of the Center for Development Research at the University of Bonn and chair of the scientific group of the United Nations Food System Summit; and Yan Shi, founder of Shared Harvest Farm and pioneer in China of implementing community-supported agriculture. Panelists contributed to the policy dialogue. They focused on actions that can be taken to transform food systems for rural prosperity and to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. Particular emphasis was placed on the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on rural economies and the importance of building the resilience of food systems in anticipation of future challenges.

Matteo Marchisio, IFAD Country Director for China, DPRK and Korea and IFAD Representative in China, reiterated that; “If you want to fix food systems, listen to everyone who works within food systems. Only by ensuring that rural people are heard and consulted in the search for solutions can these food systems become inclusive and sustainable.

/Public release. This material from the original organization/authors may be ad hoc in nature, edited for clarity, style and length. The views and opinions expressed are those of the author or authors. See in full here.

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