The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) is the specialized agency of the UN that leads international effort to defeat hunger. With over 194 member states, FAO works in over 130 countries worldwide.
Bangladesh and FAO enjoy an excellent relationship since Bangladesh joined FAO in 1973. FAO was one of the first international agencies that extended considerable assistance to Bangladesh for relief and rehabilitation during the immediate post-liberation period. It also supported national efforts for economic recovery and reconstruction.
FAO’s technical assistance in the country covers sustainable agriculture (including crops, livestock and fisheries), natural resources management, forestry, food security and rural development. FAO made remarkable contribution in Bangladesh agriculture particularly delineation of 30 agro ecological zone, establishment of CIRDAP – a regional rural development organization, enhancing food safety and security through Country Investment Plan (CIP) for agriculture and food security; CIP for environment, forest and climate change, strengthening Bangladesh food safety authority, marine stock assessment at Bay of Bengal, Anticipatory Action in emergency context, the Hand-in-Hand Initiative, Agriculture Sector Transformation Plan and Digital Village Initiative, etc.
Bangladesh has also reciprocated equally by being one of the most active members and contributing significantly to FAO’s endeavors, commissions, committees and working panels. Hon’ble Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has been nominated by FAO as the Co-chair of the “One Health Global Leaders Group on Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR)”. This underlined the unique position of Bangladesh to play a leading role regionally to raise awareness and action to address AMR. FAO also awarded the Ceres Medal to the Hon’ble Prime Minister in 1999 as recognition of her fight against poverty. In 2015, our “Floating Bed Agriculture” was declared by FAO as the “Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems (GIAHS)”. In this method, farmers of the wet land and flood affected parts of Bangladesh use the water bodies upon submerged land for crop production.
Recently (17 June 2021), Bangladesh has been elected a Member of FAO Council from the Asia Region for the term 2022-2024 at the 42 nd Session of the FAO Conference at which 183 member states
participated. Bangladesh with other Council Members will now lead the organization at both policy and executive level in deciding and advising on matters pertaining to the implementation of programme and budget execution, monitoring of activities under the new results-based framework, monitoring of implementation of governance decisions and oversight of the administration of the organization for three years. Bangladesh Embassy in Rome actively worked to obtain support in favour of Bangladesh.
This comes at a moment when Bangladesh is going to host the 36 th Asia and the Pacific FAO Regional Conference (APRC) from 08-11 March 2022 in Dhaka which is expected to be attended by Ministerial level
delegates from 46 member countries of the region. Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has agreed to inaugurate the Conference which Bangladesh is going to host for the first time.
Please see details for some works of FAO Country office in Bangladesh.
Bangladesh - Impact of Anticipatory Action booklet and the ‘Striking before the Floods in Bangladesh’ video. This documents the outcome of acting early to protect farming families in northwestern Bangladesh from the 2020 monsoon floods. Importantly, this study showcases how quickly FAO can act. Based on a 10-day forecast, FAO managed to support over 18 000 households ahead of the floods peak delivering livestock feed and storage drums to 85% of households in two weeks’ time. This anticipatory action pilot is one of the first projects in this growing number of collaborative, multi-agency interventions. It is also the very first sudden-onset disaster in which FAO tested this type of protective action that was previously applied only in more gradually unfolding crises.
Also see the FAO-Bangladesh Annual Report brochure (attached), a summary of the achievements made in 2020 under the three pillars of the Country Programming Framework (CPF) 2019-2021. In line with the CPF, FAO contributed towards actions in the following areas: agricultural diversification and sustainability; fisheries and livestock production; postharvest transformation; value addition and nutrition and supply; enhanced access to social protection and safety nets; increased resilience; food system sustainability (including food safety and food waste); climate change, deforestation and forest degradation; and disaster risk reduction and anticipatory action.