News 596 views last update:Mar 16, 2007

US and FAO: agreement on agriculture

The US and the United Nations' Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) today signed a framework agreement to coordinate technichal assistance on issues important to agriculture.

The agreement was signed by US agriculture secretary Mike Johanns (photograph) and FAO director-general Jacques Diouf.

The agreement will help to address issues such as plant and animal diseases including avian influenza , conservation, genetic resources, chronic hunger and the growing demand for renewable energy resources.


"This agreement will facilitate greater international coordination and collaboration on a broad range of agricultural issues and help to protect our agricultural systems," said Johanns. "I believe the benefits will be immediate by enhancing the worldwide response to highly pathogenic H5N1 avian influenza."

The Framework Agreement was approved last fall and formally signed today.

Crisis centre

Under the agreement, a Crisis Management Center was formed, operated by the FAO in close collaboration with the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) and located in Rome.

It provides animal disease analysis and deploys international resources to prevent and contain animal diseases.

The center is currently focused on highly pathogenic H5N1 avian influenza, which continues to spread in parts of the world. Three specialists of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) are currently assigned to the centre.

Related websites:
• United States Department of Agriculture (USDA)
• Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO)
• World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE)

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