Prime Minister urges FAO to stand up for farmers at WTO

Prime Minister Narendra Modi today called upon the Food and Agricultural Organisation (FAO) to take the lead in protecting the interests of the poor and farmers at the World Trade Organization.

The Prime Minister asserted that India does not stand in the way of a rule-based global trade agreement, but could not sacrifice the interests and food security of the poor and the farmers.

He said India looks forward to active participation of FAO in addressing the emerging challenges in Indian agriculture.

He was speaking to Dr Jose Graziano da Silva, director general, FAO, who called on the prime minister today.

The Prime Minister described Dr. da Silva as one of the champions of the "No Hunger Project" in Brazil, and sought a partnership with the FAO for capacity-building in food storage.

He suggested that some portion of such capacity addition brought about by the FAO`s efforts through international financial institutions, could be earmarked for the food and nutritional requirements of the poorest countries.

He also also sought FAO`s cooperation in designing a special campaign targeted at women in India, which would highlight ways to improve nutritional value and food habits.

Modi also discussed ways and means for the FAO to contribute towards increasing nutritional value in the mid-day meal scheme for schoolchildren, enhancing production and protein content of pulses, improving production of oilseeds, enhancing milk productivity, and modernization of fisheries sector in India.