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D-8 meeting on agriculture, food security begins today

Published : 11 Jan 2022 10:08 PM | Updated : 12 Jan 2022 04:18 PM

A two-day meeting of the developing countries' alliance or D-8 ministerial level is starting in Dhaka on Wednesday organized by the Ministry of Agriculture. The 7th D-8 Ministerial Meeting on Agriculture and Food Security will be held virtually due to Covid-19 pandemic. Bangladesh is now the President of D-8 Forum. That is why this conference is important as part of South-South cooperation. In addition, Bangladesh is currently the President of the Climate Vulnerable Forum (CVF). This meeting will discuss the promotion of Climate Smart Agriculture, which is why this meeting is important.

Agriculture Minister Dr Abdur Razzaque on Tuesday said this in the online press briefing. Agriculture Secretary Saidul Islam and Additional Secretary Ruhul Amin Talukder were present during the discussion.

The minister said the high-level meeting would be attended by senior officials from the alliance member countries: Bangladesh, Egypt, Indonesia, Malaysia, Iran, Nigeria, Pakistan and Turkey, including agriculture and food ministers and secretaries. In addition, representatives of various international organizations including IDB, FAO, IFAD, IRRI, CIMMYT will also participate.

 The Minister further said that the main topic of discussion at this year's meeting was Agriculture and Food Security. In this case, important issues for the allied countries will be discussed. Cooperation on various issues including cooperation in agricultural production and increasing productivity, joint agricultural research, mechanization, agro-processing, blue economy, fertilizer production, seeds, animal feed, value chain development, training and capacity building will be highlighted.

Replying to a question on the price of rice, the minister said that the production of rice is increasing every year. There is enough rice in the market. But we have to keep in mind that the price of wheat has gone up in the world market at present. If the price of wheat goes up, the price of rice also goes up. There are 1 million Rohingyas in the country. 22-24 lakh new faces are being added every year. Also, some rice is being used as animal feed. As a result of all these factors and some inflation, the price of rice is a bit higher. But there is no situation where rice is not available in the market or people cannot buy it. There is no food crisis in the country at the moment.

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