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ASEAN and CGIAR to Launch Joint Program on Accelerating Innovation in Agri-Food Systems

04 October 2023, Malaysia: The ASEAN-CGIAR Innovate for Food and Nutrition Security Regional Program will be officially launched on October 4, 2023. This program aims to scale up and scale out integrated innovations in order to enhance the resilience of ASEAN’s agri-food systems to climate change. The launching ceremony will be part of the 45th Meeting of the ASEAN Ministers on Agriculture and Forestry.

“Over the next 10 years, the program envisions delivering better livelihoods for food producers and stakeholders, while ensuring affordable, nutritious, and healthy food for consumers. Additionally, it seeks to foster a healthier natural environment for all,” according to Dr. Jongsoo Shin, the ASEAN-CGIAR Regional Program Director.

CGIAR has been working with the ASEAN Secretariat, ASEAN Member States, and a range of funding and other partners to develop this multi-year research and innovation program.
Dr. Stephan Weise, ASEAN-CGIAR Program Co-Director, emphasized that “the Program aims to be bottom-up, cross and trans-disciplinary. It is being co-created and, therefore, is fully co-owned by ASEAN partners.”

Under the ASEAN-CGIAR Innovate for Food Regional Program, the following eight intervention packages were developed:

  • Regenerative Agriculture/Aquaculture Practices and Judicious Agrochemical Use 
  • Climate Neutrality and Circular Agriculture
  • Enhancing ASEAN Agrobiodiversity Use and Landscape Biodiversity
  • Enhancing Value Chains and Regional Trade
  • Transboundary Pests and Diseases
  • Private Sector Investment and Sustainable Financing
  • Farmer-Led Irrigation for Climate-Resilient Agri-Food Systems
  • Food Systems Transformation for More Nutritious and Healthy Diets

The initial 5-year Program is expected to shift into full gear in 2024, targeting a budget of USD 60 million over 5 years across 8 Intervention Packages (IPs). Contributions from the ASEAN Member States through bilateral or in-kind resources are expected. Initial funding was already given by several international partners, such as the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research and the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office of the Government of the United Kingdom, to start the groundwork for the 10-year regional program.

The program will be divided into two parts – a Planning Meeting and the Program Launch.

The Planning Meeting will provide a platform for comprehensive discussions on the progress made by the intervention packages in this kick-off phase. Stakeholders will delve into the details of each intervention package, including objectives, strategies, expected impact, challenges, and collaboration aspects. This meeting will also facilitate internal planning and management discussions to further strengthen the partnership.

The Program Launch in the evening, which will be attended by high-level officials from the AMS and CGIAR experts, as well as funders, is a celebratory event marking a significant milestone in the Program. This event acknowledges the promise of scaling up innovative solutions for positive transformation across ASEAN’s agri-food systems, benefiting various stakeholders.

Also Read: Global Conference on Sustainable Agricultural Mechanization: Efficiency, Inclusiveness and Resilience

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