India Region

G-20 Agriculture Working Group: Strengthening infrastructure for small and marginal farmers a priority

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15 June 2023, New Delhi: The 3-day meeting of the Agriculture Ministers under the Agriculture Working Group (AWG) of the G-20 began today in Hyderabad. More than 200 delegates from member countries, invited countries and international organizations are participating in the meeting.

Union Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Minister Narendra Singh Tomar in a press conference said that agriculture priority sectors are being discussed in the meeting. These areas form the basis of this year’s Agriculture Working Group. Tomar said that India has a full commitment towards food security and nutrition under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, policies have been made accordingly and its successful implementation is also being ensured.

Union Minister mentioned that there are four priority areas of the Agriculture Working Group. These include a) Food security and nutrition with a focus on improving social protection systems to promote agro-diversification and enhance food security, (b) Sustainable agriculture and financing green and climate resilient agriculture with a climate-smart approach focused on climate resilient technologies and farming system models for sustainable agricultural production, (c) Third, strengthening infrastructure for small and marginal farmers, women and youth, sharing technology and investment and through increasing economic opportunities inclusive agricultural value chains and food systems to enhance the resilience and efficiency of value chains, (d) Fourth, digitalization for agricultural transformation with an emphasis on standardized agricultural data platforms as digital public goods and leveraging new-emerging digital technologies to transform the agri-food sector. These are being discussed in different sessions of the meeting.

Tomar said that India is very prosperous and powerful in the agriculture sector and shares its knowledge and experience in the global interest of the agriculture sector, for which we will be ready in the future as well. He said that in the last nine years, many new dimensions have been established in the agriculture sector in the country, through which the welfare of medium to small farmers is the main objective. Given climate change and the environment, decisions have been taken in the interest of the agriculture sector.

The first side event was based on ‘Managing Agribusiness for Profit, People, and Planet.’ The keynote address was presented by the Director General of IFPRI, Dr. Johan Swinnen. The discussion was moderated by the Former Secretary, of DA&FW, Dr. Shobhana Kumar Pattnayak. The session’s panelists were from various private companies which are involved in building robust supply chain systems. The panel discussion focused on bringing out concrete examples of managing trade-offs between profit, people, and the planet. They also discussed ways to identify solutions, policies, and programs to achieve greater sustainability for food systems at large.

The second side event revolved around the topic ‘Connecting the Digitally Disconnected: Harnessing the Power of Digital Technologies in Agriculture.’ The event was initiated by the Under Secretary of Agriculture for Rural Development, USDA, and event Chair, Mrs. Xochitl Torres Small, and the keynote presentation was made by the Director General of ADB (Asian Development Bank), Mr. Kenichi Yokoyam. The discussion was moderated by the Chairman of the Centre for the Digital Future, Mr. Rentala Chandrashekhar. The session constituted panelists from various Agri Tech companies, start-ups, and international organizations. The panel discussion was focused on exploring strategies for scaling up and replicating the best practices of digital agriculture initiatives and on discussing the nature of interventions made by the government and stakeholders in promoting and supporting the bridging the gap for the digitally disconnected population.

Also Read: ICAR signs an MOU with Amazon Kisan to guide farmers on the scientific cultivation of crops

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