At the kind invitation of the Akhtar Hameed Khan National Centre for Rural Development (AHK NCRD), Establishment Division, Government of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, H.E. Eng. Wassfi Hassan El-Sreihin, Secretary General, AARDO paid a visit to Pakistan from 12 to 15 December 2017 to grace the AARDO-AHKNCRD collaborative International Workshop-cum-Training Programme on "Irrigation System and Water Management”, held at AHKNCRD, Islamabad. Mr. Syed Abu Ahmad Akif, Hon’ble Secretary, Ministry of Climate Change, Government of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan graced the inaugural session as the Chief Guest. Among the dignitaries present on the occasion were Ambassadors & diplomats from the participating countries. He also interacted with the participants from member countries.
During the visit, the Secretary General had a meeting with Mr. Muhammad Asghar Ch., Director General, AHK NCRD, and Honorary Regional Representative of AARDO for South and Central Asia, and discussed matters of mutual interest, including activities of the Regional Office.
While in Pakistan, the Secretary General paid courtesy calls on Lt. Gen. Naweed Zaman, Rector, National University of Science & Technology, Dr. Muhammad Azeem Khan, Director General, National Agriculture Research Centre and apprised them of the activities and programmes of AARDO. He met with the Hon’ble Secretary, Ministry of Climate Change, Government of Pakistan and briefed him about the activities of AARDO, besides discussing matters of common concerns.
The Secretary General paid a visit to COMSATS Institute of Information Technology and met with the Rector, Prof. Dr. Raheel Qamar and discussed matters related to reactivating the Memorandum of Understanding signed earlier between them. He also visited the Pakistan Institute for Parliamentary Services and had a meeting with Mr. Zafarullah Khan, Executive Director.
He also met Dr. Zafar Iqbal Qadir, Chairman, Taleem Foundation, Islamabad at the Regional Office and discussed matters of common interests, including implementation of some projects from Taaleem Foundation in an AARDO member country.
The training programme on “Recent Advances in Agricultural Survey: Remote Sensing and GIS Applications” has been organized by AARDO in collaboration with the esteemed Ministry of Rural Development, Government of India, at Indian Agricultural Statistics Research Institute, (IASRI), New Delhi from 22 November to 12 December 2017, under additional technical contribution provided by the esteemed Government of India to AARDO. Nine (09) participants from 09 AARDO member countries, namely, R.O. China (Taiwan), Egypt, Jordan, Malaysia, Oman, Palestine, Sri Lanka, Sudan and Zambia attended the programme.
The Inaugural Function of the programme was held on 22 November and graced by Dr. N.S. Rathore, Deputy Director General, Education, Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR), H.E. Eng. Wassfi Hassan El-Sreihin, Secretary General, AARDO and Dr. A.K. Choubey, Director, IASRI who delivered their inaugural addresses. At the function, Dr. Tauqueer Ahmad, Head, Division of Sample Surveys, IASRI and Dr. Prachi Misra Sahoo, Principal Scientist and Course Director, IASRI informed about the background, course contents and field visits of the programme.
During the course of deliberations, the pertinent issues such as Planning and Organizational Aspects of Sample Surveys; National Agricultural Statistics System; Crop Yield Estimation using Crop Cutting Experiments Technique; Remote Sensing Application in Agriculture; Geographic Information System (GIS) & Data Models in GIS; Spatial Data Analysis of Raster & Vector Data; Land Recording System and Crop Production Estimation; Global Positioning System (GPS) and Indian Navigation System; Technology Fusion for Agricultural Surveys and Resource Planning; Applications of Remote Sensing and GIS for Land Use Statistics; Remote Sensing and GIS for Drought Assessment; Applications of Microwave Remote Sensing in Agriculture; Drone Remote Sensing for Precision Agriculture; Remote Sensing for Crop Growth and Crop Simulation Modeling; etc. have been addressed by eminent resource persons and faculty of the IASRI.
The field visits to various Institutions and projects such as Demonstration of Crop Cutting Experiment Station; Plant Phenomics Centre; Satellite Data Receiving Station; Forest Research Institute (FRI), Dehradun; National Agricultural Science Museum; Advanced Supercomputing Hub for OMICS Knowledge in Agriculture (ASHOKA), etc., have provided an opportunity to the participants to study and learn from the rich and varied Indian experiences.
The Valedictory Function of the programme was held on 12th December 2017 and graced by Dr. P.S. Pandey, Assistant Director General, ICAR, Dr. Manoj Nardeosingh, Assistant Secretary General, AARDO and Dr. L.M. Bhar, Officiating Director, IASRI. The dignitaries delivered their closing addresses and distributed the certificates of participation and mementoes to the participants. Dr. Tauqueer Ahmad, Head, Division of Sample Surveys, IASRI and Dr. Prachi Misra Sahoo, Principal Scientist & Course Director briefed about the training course and conducted the closing ceremony, accordingly. On behalf of the participants, the participants from Egypt, Sri Lanka and Zambia, Dr. Mohamed Ezzat Abdelhady Khalifa, Ms. Devika Chithranayana Rajapakse and Mr. Joseph Cheelo gave feedback on the programme and shared their experiences respectively. They also extended their gratitude and appreciation to AARDO and IASRI. A vote of thank was given by Dr. Prachi Misra Sahoo, the Course Director.
The organization of the study visits programme, on specific requests from the member countries, to study the achievements of the member countries in pertinent fields is one of the important activities of AARDO. Under this programme, the visiting delegates from the concerned member countries get exposure to the policies/programmes/models undertaken by other member countries.
On the request of the Palestinian Agricultural Disaster Risk Reduction & Insurance Fund (PADRRIF), Ministry of Agriculture, State of Palestine, a study visit on “Agricultural Insurance and Risk Management” for a three member high level delegation from Palestine to India was arranged, in collaboration with the Ministry of Rural Development, Government of India, for a period of one week during 12-18 November 2017.
The delegation was headed by Dr. Nasser Jaghoub, Director General, Palestinian Agriculture Disaster Risk Reduction and Insurance Fund (PADRRIF). He was accompanied by Mr. Iyad Ahmad Ghanim, Director, Compensation Department and Mr. Qais Ahmed Yousef Hantash, Director, Agricultural Insurance Unit, PADRRIF. The main objective of the visit was to study agricultural insurance schemes/programmes in India and derive benefit from their experiences in order to help PADRRIF to formulate its own model, based on local environment and conditions.
During the visit, delegation visited various Institutions/Centres of excellence in Delhi such as National Institute of Agricultural Economics and Policy Research (NIAP); IFFCO Tokyo General Insurance Co. Limited, Gurugram; Regional Office of the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD); National Institute for Transforming India (NITI) Aayog; Agriculture Insurance Company Limited; Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare; and Council of Food and Agriculture (ICFA).
The delegation called on the Hon’ble Additional Secretary, Ministry of Rural Development, Government of India on 14 November where a session was held with high level officials of the Ministry. The delegation also visited AARDO headquarters and had fruitful discussion with H.E. the Secretary General, the Assistant Secretary General, and other Senior Officers of AARDO.
The outcome of the study visit has enabled the delegates to learn from approaches, strategies and policies effectively addressing agricultural insurance and risk management which could be adapted to the Palestinian context. The delegates have acquainted themselves with up-to-date strategies, techniques on crop insurance policies and programmes in India. A report on the visit will be submitted by the delegates and same may equally benefit other member countries.
It is worth mentioning that, during the visits to Ministry of Rural Development and Ministry of Agriculture and Farmer’s Welfare, Government of India, the delegates were accompanied by H.E. Mr. Adnan Abualhayjaa, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to India, the State of Palestine and H.E. Eng. Wassfi Hassan El Sreihin, Secretary General, AARDO.
Dr. Manoj Nardeosingh, Assistant Secretary General, AARDO accompanied the delegates during their visits to IFFCO Tokyo General Insurance Co. Limited, Gurugram and NITI Aayog. Dr. Khushnood Ali, Head, Research Division, AARDO coordinated and accompanied the delegates during their visits.
AARDO extends its profound thanks to the esteemed Ministry of Rural Development, Ministry of Agriculture and Farmer’s Welfare, Government of India, National Institute of Agricultural Economics and Policy Research (NIAP); IFFCO Tokyo General Insurance Co. Limited, Gurugram; the Regional Office of the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD); National Institute for Transforming India (NITI) Aayog; Agriculture Insurance Company Limited; and Council of Food and Agriculture (ICFA) for their kind cooperation and hospitality extended to the delegates during their visits.
AARDO expresses its gratitude to the esteemed Government of India as it has always been generous in supporting AARDO’s technical and organizational activities.
The above titled training programme was organized by AARDO in collaboration with the esteemed Ministry of Rural Development, Government of India at the Central Soil Salinity Research Institute (CSSRI), Karnal, Haryana, India during 10-24 November 2017, under the additional technical contribution provided by the esteemed Government of India to AARDO.
The programme was inaugurated on 10 November 2017 by Dr. P.S. Minhas, Former Director, ICAR-NIASM (National Institute of Abiotic Stress Management), Baramati, Pune, Maharashtra, India. The training programme was attended by 10 participants from 10 AARDO member countries, namely, Bangladesh, Republic of China (Taiwan), Egypt, Jordan, Malaysia, Nigeria, Palestine, Sri Lanka, Sudan and Syria.
The pertinent issues regarding the sustainable use of water resources were addressed during the course of deliberations by the eminent resource persons and faculty of the CSSRI. The field visits to various institutions and projects provided an opportunity to the participants to study and learn from the rich and varied Indian experiences.
The valedictory function of the programme was held on 24th November 2017 and graced by Dr. Gurbachan Singh, Former Chairman, Agriculture Scientist Recruitment Board (ASRB), New Delhi, H.E. Eng. Wassfi Hassan El-Sreihin, Secretary General, AARDO and Dr. P.C. Sharma, Director, Central Soil Salinity Research Institute (CSSRI), Karnal. The dignitaries delivered their closing addresses and distributed the certificates of participation to the participants. Dr. R. K. Yadav, Head, Division of Soil and Crop Management, CSSRI and Course Director and Dr. R.L. Meena, Co-Course Coordinator briefed about the training programme and conducted the closing ceremony respectively. On behalf of the participants, Dr. Abul Kalam Sharifullah and Mr. Ammar Mohammed Abdelmajid Hussein from Bangladesh and Palestine respectively gave feedback on the programme and shared their experiences and appreciation of the course. A vote of thank was extended by Dr. Gajender Singh, Co-Course Coordinator, CSSRI.
African-Asian Rural Development Organization (AARDO), in collaboration with the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), UN Women (Zambia Office), and Regional Office of AARDO for Southern Africa, Lusaka, Zambia, organized Regional Workshop on above titled theme in Lusaka, Zambia from 6th to 7th November 2017. This Regional Workshop which was equally supported by UN Volunteers, United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) and Global Peace Foundation brought together youth experts from the member States to discuss, inter alia, youth empowerment through entrepreneurship, challenges and capacity building of rural youth and different modalities to implement the COMESA Youth Programme.
AARDO and COMESA common member States are at various stages of youth policy development and implementation, with multiple ambitions, varied approaches, different incentives, and numerous frameworks. Platforms for inter and intra-regional cooperation are crucial to enable sharing of experiences and knowledge, as well as tools and mechanisms, so that stakeholders and partners may together advance inclusive, transparent and responsive youth policies and interventions. Therefore, this collaborative regional workshop has provided a platform to stakeholders for youth empowerment around the COMESA region, to discuss and respond to the key questions outlined in the COMESA Youth Programme and to give a new impetus to evidence‐based, inclusive, participatory and effective youth empowerment policies and interventions, with emphasis on entrepreneurship development, especially in rural areas.
The workshop was attended by 15 senior level participants from seven (07) common member countries of AARDO and COMESA, namely, Egypt, Ethiopia, Malawi, Mauritius, Namibia, Sudan and Zambia.
The Inaugural Function was held on 06 November 2017 and graced by Ms. Agnes Mpundu Musunga, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Youth, Sports and Child Development, Government of the Republic of Zambia, H.E. Ambassador Dr. Kipyego Cheluget, Assistant Secretary General, COMESA and Dr. Manoj Nardeosingh, Assistant Secretary General, AARDO. The Representatives of UN Women, United Nations Volunteers, UNIDO and Global Peace Foundation also attended the inauguration of the workshop.
The workshop provided an opportunity to the resource persons and all the delegates to make presentations and share their experiences on youth programmes in their respective countries and discuss issued such as youth empowerment, policy development, effective implementation, inclusion of rural youth and women in national policies and programmes, youth and rural transformation. It was also a platform to make recommendations towards youth empowerment and entrepreneurship development. It was equally an opportunity to understand the COMESA volunteers’ programme.
During the closing ceremony, held on 07 November 2017, remarks were made by the dignitaries: Mr. Collins Mulunda, Director, Ministry of Youth, Sports and Child Development, Government of Zambia and Honorary Regional Representative of AARDO for Southern Africa, Dr. Manoj Nardeosingh, Assistant Secretary General, AARDO and Mrs. Beatrice S. Hamusonde, Director, Gender and Social Affairs, COMESA. It is believed that this collaborative workshop has enabled the participants to understand more about the cross cutting issues of entrepreneurship development and AARDO and COMESA’s initiatives targeting empowerment of youth and especially creating employment opportunities for rural youth through education, entrepreneurship and innovation. The participants will be able to share these gained knowledge and experiences with the concerned stakeholders in their respective countries for larger benefits.
African-Asian Rural Development Organization (AARDO) in collaboration with the Korea International Cooperation Agency (KOICA), Government of the Republic of Korea organised the above titled training programme in Seoul, 29 October - 18 November 2017 held at the Korea Rural Community Corporation (KRC), Seoul. The programme, first in series, was organised with the following objectives:
- To find a way of rural community development from consultation and technical assistance on rural development;
- To share the success story of Korean rural development through the economic growth experience;
- To disseminate the practical knowledge on rural development;
- To exchange the views on how to increase income generation and to improve living environment for better quality of life in rural areas; and
- To strengthen future cooperation in the rural development and capacity building areas among the participating countries.
The Programme commenced on 31 October 2017 with Opening Ceremony at Hotel Inter Four Points, Seoul and addressed by Mr. Park Baeryun, Director General, Korea Rural Community Corporation (KRC), Mr. Yoo, Byung-Rin, Honorary Regional Representatives of AARDO for the Far East, R. O. Korea and Dr. Yo, Woon Shik, Director, International Education and Exchange Center (KRC-IEEC). The programme was attended by seventeen (17) participants from fourteen (14) AARDO member countries, namely, Egypt, Ghana, Gambia, Jordan, Lebanon, Malawi, Malaysia, Mauritius, Morocco, Nigeria, Palestine, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Syria and one AARDO official.
The training programme consisted of two parts, plenary session and field /study visits. The plenary sessions included lectures by experts, the country reports, discussions and preparation of action plan by the participants. The lectures delivered by the experts covered topics like Effective Rural Development Strategies to Achieving SDGs, Rural Infrastructure and livelihood, Capacity Building for Rural Development, Crop Production and Post Harvest Technology, etc. Besides, two experts deputed by AARDO, from India presented their respective papers on “Rural Infrastructure and Livelihood” and “Value Chain Management”.
Field visits to different projects like Tele Monitoring and Tele Control System in Anseong Irrigation Area, Ansung City; Yeongsangang Project,Gwangju City; Gark Dong wholesale Market, Saemangeum Comprehensive Development Project, Water and Waste Management project, Rural Development Administration (RDA) and Korea National College of Agriculture and Fisheries, etc. provided first hand information to the participants on tremendous progress made by Korea in sustainable rural development.
The closing ceremony of the programme was held on 17 November 2017 and graced by Mr. Park Baeryun, Director General, Korea Rural Community Corporation (KRC), Ms. Sun Jong Lee, Programme Coordinator, KOICA and Dr. Yo, Woon Shik, Director, International Education and Exchange Center (KRC-IEEC). The dignitaries delivered their valedictory addresses; followed by award of certificates to the participants. At the end of the ceremony, on behalf of the participants, Mr Dare Adebowale Oladapo, the participant from Nigeria gave a Vote of Thanks to the host KOICA and KRC for organising the training programme; and to the AARDO official for the untiring efforts.
The above titled training programme was organized by AARDO in collaboration with the esteemed Ministry of Rural Development, Government of India, at Central Institute of Agricultural Engineering (CIAE), Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India during 24 October-06 November 2017, under the additional technical contribution provided by the esteemed Government of India to AARDO.
The Inaugural Session of the programme was held on 24 November under the Chairmanship of Dr. K.K. Singh, Director, CIAE. It was attended by 08 participants from 08 AARDO member countries, namely, Bangladesh, Egypt, Lebanon, Malaysia, Palestine, Sri Lanka, Sudan and Zambia.
During the various technical sessions, the pertinent issues such as agricultural mechanization including precision agriculture, animal, power operated and automated equipment; post-harvest mechanization; on-farm energy management and production; agricultural mechanization strategies; bio safety in poultry, etc. were addressed by the eminent resource persons and faculty of the CIAE. The field visits to various institutions and projects such as agricultural machine manufacturing industries; successful custom hiring centers/ yantradoot village; Eicher Tractors; ITC e-Chaupal; etc. provided the participants with an opportunity to study and learn from the rich and varied Indian experiences.
The closing ceremony of the programme was held on 06th November 2017 and graced by H.E. Eng. Wassfi Hassan El-Sreihin, Secretary General, AARDO and Dr. K.K. Singh, Director, CIAE. The dignitaries delivered their closing addresses and distributed the certificates of participation to the participants. Earlier, Dr. Nachiketkotwaliwale, Head & Course Director, Agro-Produce Processing Division, CIAE briefed about the course contents, field visits and presented a feedback report. On behalf of the participants, Mr. Poley Robert Siame, the participant from Zambia, shared his experiences and thanked the organizers for the opportunity provided to attend such a specialized high level training programme. A vote of thank was extended by Dr. P.C. Bargale, Head, Technology Transfer Division, CIAE.
AARDO, in collaboration with the Establishment Division (Prime Minister’s Office), Government of Pakistan and the Regional Office of AARDO for South and Central Asia, organized Regional Workshop on “Disaster Risk Reduction and Management” at Akhtar Hameed Khan National Centre for Rural Development (AHKNCRD), Islamabad, Pakistan, during 24-31 October 2017. Twenty three (23) delegates, from eight (08) member countries including host country, namely, Bangladesh, Jordan, Republic of China (Taiwan), Malaysia, Palestine, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Syria, attended the programme.
The workshop was inaugurated on 25 October by Chief Guest, Dr. Muhammad Hashim Popalzai, Special Secretary, Establishment Division, Prime’s Minister Office. During the Inaugural Session, H.E. Eng. Wassfi Hassan El-Sreihin, Secretary General, AARDO delivered his live address from AARDO Secretariat, New Delhi. Mr. Muhammad Asghar Chaudhary, Director General, AHK NCRD, welcomed the foreign and local participants, resourse persons and all the distinguished guests. Among the guests were Dr. Safdar Sohail, DG, National Institute of Management (NIM), Mr. Hasnain Mehdi, DG, Secretariat Training Institute (STI) and representatives from National Counter Terrorism Authority (NACTA), Excellencies, Ambassadors from Syria, Palestine, Mauritius and other members of the Diplomatic corps, who witnessed the Opening Ceremony, and were warmly offered a special welcome.
The workshop consisted of plenary sessions and exposure visits. During the plenary sessions, experts delivered their lectures on Disaster Risk Reduction and Management; Pakistan’s disaster risk situation and disaster management system; National DRR Policy and National Disaster Management Plan (NDMP) - An overview; Learning from Experience - Pakistan Context (Floods 2010); Learning from Experience - Pakistan Context (Earthquake 2005); Role of Media in Disaster Management; etc. Exposure visits along with the lectures provided an overall view on development in the field of Disaster Risk Reduction and Management and covered significant activities and operations that exposed the participants to Pakistan’s rich and vast experiences in DRRM. These exposures could be made possible with the collaboration of National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA), Space and Upper Atmosphere Research Commission (SUPARCO), Islamabad, Provicial Disaster Management Authority (PDMA), Peshawar Metrological Department (PMD), Islamabad, Emergency Service 1122 at Murree. The objectives of the regional workshop were fully achieved.
On his short visit to Pakistan, the Assistant Secretary General, Dr. Manoj Nardeosingh paid a courtesy call on His Excellency, Chairman of NDMA, Islamabad, H E Lieutenant General Omar Mahmood Hayat and discussed matters of mutual concern and cooperation. During the meeting, he briefed about AARDO’s mission and activities before referring to a previous initiative by AARDO regarding possibilities of entering into a MoU with NDMA through Government of Pakistan. Dr. Manoj underlined the support of Govt. of Pakistan in enhancing capabilities of AARDO members countries through organisation of international training programmes at AHK NCRD and AARDO”s Regional Office. The Chairman of NDMA informed the ASG of various initiatives, development and experience of NDMA in the field of DRRM. He emphasised that, having gone through different disasters and learned best practices, NDMA would wish to share these experiences, through AARDO platform to other members. ASG also presented a set of AARDO publications to the Chairman. The Chairman informed that a training institute under NDMA was in the pipeline and the signing of MoU with AARDO on mutual beneficial terms would, thereafter, be considered. ASG thanked him for all the courtesies and wished for a fruitful cooperation between the two organizations in the near future.
The valedictory session of the programme was held at AHK NCRD Islamabad, on 30st October 2017 where participants were felicitated and presented with certificates. The occasion was graced by Mr. Muhammad Asghar Chaudhary, Director General, AHK NCRD, Dr. Manoj Nardeosingh, Assistant Secretary General, AARDO, Mr. Israr Mohammad Khan, Director (Training) and Mr. Raja Zahid Pervez, Director (Admin & Research). On behalf of the participants, a vote of thanks was extended by the participants from Jordan and Pakistan.
The organization of study visit programme in the field of agriculture and rural development is one of the important activities of AARDO. AARDO, in collaboration with the Council of Agriculture, Executive Yuan, Government of the Republic of China, organized a specialized study visit programme on above titled theme in Republic of China, during 15 – 21 October 2017 with the following objectives: i) to observe, understand and learn various policies and technologies used for promotion of food processing and marketing of agricultural produce; ii) to study the models of small and medium on farm and off farm agro-based enterprises; iii) to examine the marketing and value chain management systems; and iv) to explore the possibilities to adapt and implement such policies and technologies, wherever possible.
Under the study visit programme, seven (07) expert-delegates from seven AARDO member countries, namely, India, Lebanon, R.O. Korea, Malaysia, Morocco, Sudan and Zambia attended the programme. The programme involved plenary sessions and field visits to research institutions as well as enterprises with successful processing and marketing strategies in different areas of agriculture. This helped in acquainting the participants to various technologies used in food processing and marketing of agricultural produce in Taiwan.
During their stay, the participants were exposed to a number of Institutions/ projects such as China Foods Industry Development Co., Ltd; Food Research and Development Institute; Taiwan Agricultural Research Institute (TARI), Council of Agriculture (COA); Wu- Feng Farmer’s Association; Yuan Jin Chuang Enterprise Co., Ltd.; Rice House Co., Ltd; Radiant Frozen Foods Co.; Taiwan Fisheries Research Institute, COA; and Tan Hou Foods.
As per the feedback received from Ms. Mudenda Hampango Sikwangala, the distinguished delegate from Zambia, the study visit was very enlightening and educative and its objectives were fully achieved. The programme was well balanced both in material content and course schedule. The participants were exposed to various elements of Taiwanese food processing and marketing industry. It was very impressive to see how much Taiwan has achieved in establishing a well-organized food processing and marketing sector. The lessons learnt are very important pointers on how Zambia particularly, and other AARDO member countries in general, can establish their food processing and marketing industry.
The study visit ended with a closing ceremony at the Council of Agriculture (COA) during which participants shared their experiences from the study tour.
The Special Session of the AARDO Executive Committee was held at The Hotel Leela Palace, New Delhi on 4th October 2017. The Session was chaired by Mr. Oomaduth Jadoo, Permanent Secretary, Prime Minister’s Office (National Development Unit), Government of the Republic of Mauritius, and Hon’ble President of the Executive Committee of AARDO.
Eleven, out of 13 members of the Executive Committee attended the Session. The countries represented in the Session were: (i) People’s Republic of Bangladesh, (ii) Republic of China (Taiwan), (iii) Arab Republic of Egypt, (iv) Republic of India, (v) State of Libya, (vi) Malaysia, (vii) Republic of Mauritius, (viii) Federal Republic of Nigeria, (ix) Sultanate of Oman, (x) Republic of the Sudan, and (xi) Republic of Zambia. His Excellency Eng. Wassfi Hassan El-Sreihin, Secretary General, AARDO attended the meeting as the Member Secretary to the Executive Committee.
The Secretary General extended a warm welcome to Hon’ble President and distinguished delegates to the Special Session and expressed his gratefulness to them for sparing their invaluable time to attend the Session. The Hon’ble President inaugurated the Special Session by mentioning, among others, that he would rely on invaluable support and suggestions of all the distinguished delegates to arrive at a constructive outcome of the meeting. After the opening addresses by the Hon’ble President and the Secretary General, the Special Session of the Executive Committee adopted the Provisional Agenda.
The Special Session of the Executive Committee was convened to elect the Assistant Secretary General of African–Asian Rural Development Organization (AARDO). The Executive Committee re-elected Dr. Manoj Nardeosingh, the current Assistant Secretary General for the second term of four (4) years with effect from 14th February 2018. After being re-elected to the post of Assistant Secretary General, Dr. Manoj Nardeosingh was congratulated by the Hon’ble President, the Secretary General, and other distinguished members of the Executive Committee by wishing him a fruitful tenure and success.
African-Asian Rural Development Organization, in collaboration with the Council of Agriculture (COA), Government the Republic of Taiwan, organized an international workshop on “Aquaculture Technology and Industry Development” at the Fisheries Research Institute (FTRI), Taipei, Taiwan during 17-22 September 2017. The objectives of the workshop were to learn Taiwan’s development experiences of aquaculture and its biotechnology-related industries; to introduce ornamental fish industry in Taiwan; and to study on marketing of the fisheries products and intelligent aquaculture.
The workshop was inaugurated by Dr. Jong-I Hu, Chief Secretary, Council of Agriculture (COA), Government of the Republic of China on 18th September 2017. During the inaugural session, H.E. Eng. Wassfi Hassan El-Sreihin, Secretary General, AARDO delivered his address. Amongst the guests, Dr. Grace Lih-Tung Lin, Director General, Department of International Relations, Council of Agriculture, Dr. Chen-Te Tseng, Chief Secretary, and Dr June-Ru Chen, Director General of the Fisheries Research Institute (FRI) graced the inaugural session. Besides, some senior officers from COA and FRI also witnessed the opening ceremony. The workshop was attended by 12 delegates from AARDO member countries, namely, Ghana, India, Jordan, Malaysia, Mauritius, Morocco, Palestine, Sri Lanka and Zambia and a special invitee from Turkey.
The workshop consisted of plenary session and field visits. During the plenary sessions, experts delivered their lectures on trends and latest developments of aquaculture and ornamental fish industry; introduction to mariculture; marketing in fisheries and intelligent aquaculture in Taiwan, etc. It was followed by field visits that provided, along with the lectures, an overall view on development of aquaculture technology and industry in Taiwan. Field visits were well arranged covering significant activities and operations that exposed well the participants to Taiwan’s rich and vast experiences in aquaculture and marine fisheries industry. These exposures could be made possible through visits to the Addiction Aquatic Company (Taipei), Mariculture Research Centre (Tainan), Sea–water Farm, Milk Fish farm and Grouper Farm (Kaohsiung city), and also Tungkang Biotechnology Research, ECOTEK Industrial Aquaculture Corp (displaying Intelligent Aquaculture), Sheng-Diao Aquatic Technology (displaying Tilapia Aquaculture), and JY LIN Trading Company (displaying Ornamental Fish Industry) at Kaohsiung city. The workshop concluded with a set of recommendations for enhanced cooperation for transfer of technology and technical expertise in the area of aquaculture development between Taiwan and the AARDO member countries.
On his short visit to Taiwan, H E the Secretary General paid a courtesy call on His Excellency Mr. Tsung-Hesien Lin, Minister of Agriculture, Republic of China. During the meeting, Secretary General profoundly thanked and expressed sincere gratitude for ceaseless generous support extended by the esteemed Government of R O China to the Organisation over the years. He reiterated the commitments of the Organization towards rural poverty alleviation in the member countries through capacity building. He briefly explained as to how the fisheries and aquaculture development programmes in the member countries could be greatly beneficial in achieving the objective of rural poverty alleviation and food security. Highlighting the importance of fisheries and aquaculture for food security, income generation and alleviation of rural poverty in the member countries, Secretary General suggested that mobile schools could greatly help and bring about a tangible impact through on the small scale aquaculture formers training and skill development.
Appreciating the views of Secretary General, Hon’ble Minister assured of continuing support of his esteemed Government to the Organisation and suggested to submit a comprehensive proposal seeking assistance for implementing development activities in the member countries. The meeting was utmost fruitful and concluded with prospective notes and warm exchange of greetings.
H E the Secretary General also paid a courtesy call on Mr. Michael P Y Hsu, Director General, International Organisations, Ministry of Foreign Affairs. In the meeting, Secretary General thanked the esteemed Government of R O China and the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and the Agriculture for their unabated generous support to the Organization. He expressed his sincere gratitude to the esteemed Government for providing 26 fellowships annually for participation of AARDO member countries in specialized short-term training programmes organized by ICDF, ICLPS and AVRDC. Sharing his concerns for the rural poor in the member countries, he felt urgent need of support to be extended in various forms including provision of mobile schools for the development of fisheries and aquaculture sector. Commending Taiwan’s advancement in fisheries and aquaculture, Secretary General hoped that the kind support of the esteemed Government in this area would continue for further benefit of the member countries. Appreciating the endeavors made by AARDO towards rural poverty alleviation, Director General assured him of his government’s continuing support to the Organization.
AARDO has been conferred the prestigious 10th Global Agriculture Award- 2017 by the Indian Council of Food and Agriculture (ICFA), New Delhi, in the category of “Livelihood Leadership” in recognition and acknowledgement of its pioneering role and impact in the field of agriculture and rural development through capacity building and other initiatives aimed at promoting sustainable livelihood of rural population in its member countries in Africa and Asia. The 10th Global Agriculture Leadership Summit and Awards was organised by ICFA in New Delhi on 5-6 September 2017.
The Award was received by His Excellency Eng. Wassfi Hassan El-Sreihin, Secretary General on behalf of AARDO, from His Excellency Prof. Kaptan Singh Solanki, Hon’ble Governor of States of Haryana and Punjab of India, and the Chief Guest of Award Function, in New Delhi on 5 September 2017.
In its citation the ICFA said, “…One of the earliest examples of South-South Cooperation in rural development in the African-Asian region, AARDO promotes collaborations with various international organizations for the economic and social welfare of the rural community. The Organization has been effectively collaborating with the appropriate international and regional organizations, including UN agencies, the national bodies, governmental or non-governmental, both in the developed and developing countries, for purposes of taking action to accelerate agriculture and rural development in the member countries. With the mission to catalyse efforts of the African-Asian countries, to help them empower their rural societies and to reconstruct the economy of their rural people, AARDO has been playing leadership role in helping its member countries with knowledge sharing, successful experiences, models and effective programmes, thus helping them launch cooperative action.”
The Leadership Summit was attended by high level dignitaries, including Ministers, Members of Parliament, Diplomats, eminent scientists, scholars, senior officials, corporate, farmers leaders from Africa, Asia and Pacific, Europe, USA and host country India. It served as a forum for resources persons to present their papers and share knowledge and experiences with the delegates on a wide range of pertinent issues like Climate Smart Agriculture for Global Food Security; Doubling Farmers Incomes by 2022; International Cooperation for Agriculture Growth; Partnering for African Agriculture Development, etc.
ICFA, established in 2015, is a national level apex Non-Government Company with a mandate for policy research and advocacy, trade, technology and investments facilitation in food and agriculture sector towards empowering the farmers and addressing the issues of agricultural development, global food security and environmental sustainability.
AARDO and ICFA have been regularly participating in each other’s activities since they signed Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for collaborating activities in July 2016.