Sustainable livestock and the Global Agenda get important support in 25th COAG Session

Sixteen country representatives spoke on behalf of the one hundred fifteen governments present at the session supporting the Global Agenda for Sustainable Livestock during the 25th COAG Consultation on 27 September 2016. They included major groups such as  the African countries (through Côte d'Ivoire) and the European Union (through Slovakia), as well as Afghanistan, USA, Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, Costa Rica, New Zealand, Switzerland, Australia, Malaysia, Bangladesh, Kenya, Sudan and China.  A wide range of overwhelmingly positive opinions and broad endorsement of the work done thus far was expressed.  COAG members considered both the seven-cluster structure and governance of the partnership as well as the connection the Global Agenda established with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as appropriate.  

Global Agenda Chair, Fritz Schneider, introduced the global importance of the livestock sector and recalled the mandate COAG gave FAO to open a multi-stakeholder consultation on the sustainable development of the sector. He introduced the biggest achievements of the Global Agenda, including the Panama declaration (June 2016) in which partners recognized the UN Agenda 2030 as a strategic framework.

The represented countries requested to  have FAO’s role strengthened in the Global Agenda as the secretariat (based on trust-fund resources), as programmatic collaborator in activities such as the different action networks, and as an inter-governmental stakeholder, particularly for Sustainable Development Goal 1 (SDG 1, no poverty) and 2 (no hunger) in order to bring these topics into the multi-stakeholder dialogue. The Global Agenda partners also appreciated the clear statement by FAO Assistant Director General, Ren Wang, regarding the Global Agenda not being owned by FAO and rather FAO being an active part of the partnership as a provider of technical and scientific inputs and as a stakeholder in the cluster structure.

In 2010 the FAO Committee on Agriculture (COAG) mandated FAO to initiate the Global Agenda by exploring multi-stakeholder opportunities for collaboration on livestock sustainability. After that, COAG has given guidance regarding FAO involvement in the Global Agenda every two years (2012, 2014 and 2016). COAG recommendations are considered by the FAO Council where executive decisions are taken regarding resource allocation and programmatic work.