Speaking after his attendance at the G120 World Farm Leaders’ meeting in Paris, IFA President John Bryan has welcomed the commitment from the President of France Nicolas Sarkozy and the Minister for Agriculture Bruno Le Maire that agriculture will be at the forefront of global policies at the G20 discussion under the French Presidency in 2011.
John Bryan said, “It was encouraging to hear President Sarkozy passionately calling for action to deal with the extreme price volatility which is damaging for farmers, consumers and society generally. The French President told the gathering of farm leaders from 120 countries that he would promote two key principles at the G20: more investment is required from public and private money in agriculture across the globe in areas such as research, processing, capacity, storage, logistics and access to markets. He said that it was a mistake that public investment in agriculture had dropped from 15% in the mid 1980’s to no more than 5% today and this needs to be addressed.”
Mr Sarkozy also called for modern global governance that delivers better market transparency and regulates the financial derivatives markets to ensure that commodity prices reflect market conditions rather than speculation.
John Bryan said that it was clear from the G120 farmers’ conference that there is a renewed interest in the concerns facing global agriculture. “With the global population expected to grow to over 9 billion by 2050, world food output will have to increase by over 70%.”
In this context, he called on the Government here to reopen its TAMS immediately and engage with farmers and the industry to scope out an investment plan from both public and private resources to achieve and exceed the Food Harvest 2020 targets for agricultural growth.