The Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA) reported on Wednesday that it launched a cycle of webinars to anticipate solutions and public policies for food security, economic recovery and trade after the COVID-19 pandemic.
The first webinar called “Thinking of the world and food security in Latin America and the Caribbean in the post COVID-19” was opened by IICA’s Director General, Manuel Otero.
The Ibero-American Secretary General, Rebeca Grynspan and the former President of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), Enrique Iglesias, participated in the activity, who discussed the challenges after the health crisis, as well as its political and social effects.
Both pointed out that the construction of a new multilateralism, greater regional integration and cooperation, strong political leadership and solid support for micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and productive units will be key aspects to alleviate the effects in the countries. Latin Americans, from a crisis that they cataloged as “without precedent”.
“It is a different crisis that needs different solutions. At the concert of nations there will be a discussion on the post-COVID-19 multilateral architecture and Latin America could have a relevant voice, “said Grynspan.
According to the authorities, the crisis has led to a revaluation of state action, but crucial and inevitable measures such as confinement and social isolation have exacerbated problems such as low productivity, poverty, unemployment, food insecurity and gender violence; as well as an increase in the digital divide.
OPPORTUNITY FOR AGRICULTURE
Both Iglesias and Grynspan emphasized that, for agriculture and the food sector in Latin America, the scenario looming after the pandemic represents a vital opportunity for the region to position itself even more as a major food supplier.
“That world to come will bring a need for food and Latin America is one of the great providers. With technology, much more can be done than what is being done now and it is essential to explicitly support SMEs, especially those in small agriculture, so that this allows the economic issue to be managed in some way. ”Affirmed Iglesias.
According to experts, in this area IICA, based in San José, has an important role to play because the food issue will be fundamental after COVID-19, also highlighting the organism’s efforts to minimize the impacts of the pandemic in the sector hemispheric agricultural.
“Latin America has to learn to have State policies for agriculture and rurality, hopefully it is time for a re-hierarchization of the agricultural sector in earnest, that the bioeconomy is the way for us not to think of agriculture only of ‘commodities’; we are working on that. These are difficult times and more crisis, more technical cooperation, “said Otero.
The next seminar of this cycle organized by IICA will be on Thursday, May 14, at 4:00 p.m. Costa Rica time (22:00 GMT), whose central theme will be sustainable development, agriculture and food in the new international context.