Minister of Agriculture Mahindananda Aluthgamage briefed the delegates at the Ministerial Session of the 36th Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) Regional Conference for Asia and the Pacific (APRC) held in Dhaka, Bangladesh about Sri Lanka’s agriculture sector and the challenges that have arisen amid the global Covid-19 pandemic. The Minister highlighted the innovative measures that are being taken to develop the agriculture sector of the country, at the interactive sessions held from 8 to 11 March 2022.
The Minister had a fruitful discussion with Director General of FAO Qu Dongyu on 10 March, on the sidelines of the conference. During discussions, the Director General of FAO stated that Sri Lanka is one of the key agricultural countries in South Asia and poverty eradication and ensuring food security is not a challenge to the small island as Sri Lanka has historical advantages in the agriculture sector. He invited Sri Lanka to use FAO as a platform to promote investment opportunities available in the country’s agriculture sector. He reaffirmed FAO’s readiness to support Sri Lanka. The Minister briefed the Director General on the initiatives taken to develop Sri Lanka’s agriculture sector.
To further collaborate and develop the agricultural cooperation with Bangladesh, Minister Aluthgamage held a bilateral discussion with the Minister of Agriculture of Bangladesh Dr.Muhammad Abdur Razzaque on 11 March. During the meeting, the two Ministers discussed possible areas of cooperation based on the bilateral agreements entered into by both sides and to promote and strengthen each other’s export commodities.
High Commissioner Professor Sudharshan Seneviratne, Additional Secretary of Agriculture Technology Dr.Gamini Samarasinghe, Deputy High Commissioner Ruwanthi Delpitiya and First Secretary (Commercial) Srimali Jayarathna of the High Commission of Sri Lanka in Dhaka participated in the discussion.
The 37th Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) Regional Conference for Asia and the Pacific is scheduled to be held in Sri Lanka in 2024.