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IMPRIMER

Development NGOs Welcome Food Aid Announcement

April 30, 2008

The Canadian government is to be congratulated for its announcement today to pledge an extra $50 million to its food aid program. In addition, the untying of the food aid means that food can be supplied quickly by using regional markets.

"The government has done the right thing today, not just in terms of the increased dollar amounts but also through the untying of its food aid," says Gerry Barr, President and CEO of the Canadian Council for International Co-operation. "But it's not enough to get food out the door - we also need to get food in the ground. And that calls for a longer term strategy, not just a response to the current crisis."

Agriculture has been neglected in foreign aid policies and international trade rules have all but undermined the livelihood of small farmers in developing countries.

More than 70% of the people living in developing countries live in rural areas and depend on agriculture for their livelihoods. But CIDA funding for agriculture programs has been in decline since the 1990s.

At the World Trade Organization, none of the key trade reforms, to stabilize commodity prices and protect small farmers, that would help developing countries have been implemented.

"Volatile markets and fluctuating food prices affect the poor as they are ill-equipped to absorb these market shocks," says Barr. "It's time world's governments, including Canada, commit to ensuring food security in the long run."

The Canadian Council for International Co-operation is a coalition of approximately 100 organizations working to end global poverty.

For more information contact:

Katia Gianneschi
Media Relations
Canadian Council for International Co-operation
Tel.: 613-241-7007 ext. 311
katiag@ccic.ca 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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