The policy analysis workshop on food security, poverty alleviation and sustainable agriculture highlighted the importance of an enabling policy environment

The policy analysis workshop on food security, poverty alleviation and sustainable agriculture was officially opened this morning, Monday 9 September 2013 by Dr. Gayatri K. Rana, Director of the Centre for Library and Technology Dissemination on behalf of Dr. Haryono, Director General of the Indonesian Agency for Agricultural Research and Development (IAARD).

Dr. Katinka Weinberger, the Director of CAPSA, in her opening remarks highlighted the importance of agriculture in the region as a source of food as well as employment and livelihood. She elaborated that the sector is facing a number of serious challenges and addressing these challenges requires an enabling policy environment and sound investments based on rigorous analyses. The workshop is designed in response to this need for capacity development, and to better equip the participants with the necessary statistical and policy analysis skills that can help them make convincing arguments for the need to invest more in this sector.

In his message to the workshop participants, Dr. Haryono emphasized that the world needs a New Vision for agriculture and that 'business as usual' in no longer an option. Agriculture needs to undergo a radical overhaul to become more sustainable. Through building capacity for agricultural policy analysis, especially in the areas of food security, poverty reduction and sustainable agriculture, it is hoped that we can cope with the challenges and achieve the goal for the benefit of all mankind including farmers, Dr. Haryono added in his statement read out by Dr. Gayatri K. Rana.

The workshop is being held from 9 to 13 September 2013, in collaboration with the Indonesian Center for Agricultural, Socio-Economic and Policy Studies (ICASEPS) and IAARD. The participants include staff of the ministries of agriculture from various provinces of Indonesia. In addition, there are also participants from five other countries, namely Bangladesh, Nepal, Papua New Guinea, Sri Lanka and Timor Leste. The participation of these international participants has been sponsored by the Statistical Institute for Asia and the Pacific (SIAP), one of ESCAP's Regional Institutes, as part of the Asia-Pacific Regional Action Plan of the Global Strategy to Improve Agriculture and Rural Statistics.