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COVID-19 Slow down the Development Towards SDGs – The 3rd Assessment Report of FAO

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Decades of development efforts undermined by pandemic – FAO report

According to the report of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations (UN), titled ‘Tracking progress on food and agriculture-related SDG indicators 2021’, COVID 19 has set back progress towards Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) enshrined in the UN’s Agenda 2030, undermining the decades of development efforts.

  • It focuses on eight SDGs, which were adopted at the UN summit in New York in 2015. It’s FAO’s 3rd assessment this time.
  • According to the report, the COVID-19 pandemic has increased the burden of chronic hunger. It has pushed around 83 to 132 million people into hunger in 2020.
  • COVID-19 has disrupted the food supply in society, around 14 percent of all food has been lost.

Key findings

i.The Pandemic caused the biggest harm in the agricultural system of the countries. It has also increased the price volatility in the supply market.

ii.Women suffered more than men due to disparity in earnings, gender inequalities in land rights, discriminatory laws and customs.

iii.Water stress also remains high in many regions of low-income countries. Which is not threatening progress towards sustainable development.

iv.The new report coincides with the recent UN Food Systems Summit, which aims to raise global awareness and spur actions to transform food systems, eradicate hunger, reduce diet-related diseases, and heal the planet.
v.The report also includes the contribution of the private sector to the SDGs.

Progress and Solutions

i.Agriculture: More investments are required to scale up supply and boost agricultural productivity in developing countries. It suggested the removal of agricultural export subsidies, duty-free access for developing and Least Developed Countries (LDCs), particularly for agricultural products.

ii.Biodiversity conservation– Support should be provided to plants and animals genetic resources.

iii.It suggests the need for progress in both the legal and practical aspects of women’s land rights and to combat the threat of illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing to the sustainability of global fisheries.

Recent Related News:

On 29th July 2020, The Food and Agriculture Organisation(FAO) unveiled a new Platform, “Technical Platform on the Measurement and Reduction of Food Loss and Waste” to support the global reduction of food loss and waste.

About Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) 

It is a specialized agency of the United Nations that leads international efforts to defeat hunger and improve nutrition and food security.

Headquarters- Rome, Italy
Establishment – 16 October 1945
Director General – QU Dongyu