Vanuatu sought to support China's FAO candidate

China has requested Vanuatu to support its nomination for the FAO DG post in this year’s election. The request was made by the Chinese Minister Han who is seen in photo receiving a gift from Vanuatu’s Minister of Agriculture Nevu

Vanuatu has been requested to support China’s candidate for the position of the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) Director General (DG) in this year’s election during the 41st Session of the FAO Conference.

China's Minister of Agriculture, Han Changfu, made the request to Vanuatu’s Minister of Agriculture, Livestock, Forestry, Fisheries and Bio-Security (MALFFB), Hosea Nevu,during their dialogue yesterday.

Minister Han told Minister Nevu and high officials from the MALFFB that the government of China has nominated a candidate for the agency’s top leadership post and wants Vanuatu’s support during election at the FAO Conference in June, the highest governing body of the organisation.

If elected, China will help Vanuatu and other developing nations in food security related issues, said Minister Han.

FAO is a specialized agency of the United Nations (UN) combating hunger and poverty. Serving both developed and developing countries, FAO acts as a neutral forum where all nations meet as equals to negotiate arguments and debate policy.

The FAO DG post is very important because whoever is elected will head the agency and the wide range of responsibilities include overseeing food-aid programmes in over 150 countries across the globe.

The election of the new FAO DG in June this year will bring together all 194 FAO member countries. The new FAO DG will be elected by a majority vote, cast by FAO member countries.

In his response regarding the request from Minister Han, Minister Nevu said: “The request requires collective decision making.

“The MALFFB and Trade will submit a paper on this to the Council of Ministers (COM) to make the decision."

According to the Chinese Minister of Agriculture, China’s candidate for the FAO DG Position is Dr Qu Dongyu, the Vice Minister of Agriculture and Rural Affairs.

The Chinese Agriculture Minister was in Port Vila for a one-day visit.

He was accompanied by high officials from China’s Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs. The delegation includes the Director General of Fisheries, Zhao Liliang, Director of the Department of International Cooperation under the Ministry of Agriculture, Wu Changxu, Vice President of Chinese Academic of Tropical Agriculture and Science , Liu Guodao, Deputy Director General of General Office Liv Ruiming, Deputy Director of the Department of International Cooperation, Xie Jianmin, Director of Bureau of State Farms and Land Reclamation, Deng Qingin , Deputy Director of International Cooperation, Wu Changxuo and the head of the China National Agriculture Development Cooperation, Yudifei.

They will leave Port Vila today (Wednesday) to proceed on their journey to Fiji where they will attend the Second China-Pacific Island Countries Agricultural Minister’s Meeting.

The two-day meeting starts tomorrow (Thursday).

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