FAO, Sweden sign $10.8m agreement to improve emergency assistance

José Graziano da Silva - FAO Director-General

The UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) and Sweden’s International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA) have signed a $10.8 million Contribution Agreement aimed at improving the quality of FAO’s assistance to distressed populations in several high-priority countries and regions.

The two-year agreement is expected to help the FAO carry out projects in Chad, Niger, Somalia, Ethiopia, Syria and North Korea as well as contribute to two regional projects in the Sahel and Central and Eastern Africa.

The agreement was signed by Per Byman, Head of the SIDA Division for Humanitarian Assistance and Laurent Thomas who is FAO’s Assistant Director-General for Technical Cooperation.

Key aspects of the agreement include support to “FAO’s ongoing decentralization of emergency operations. The Organization will strengthen its capacities in areas such as needs assessment, gender, accountability to affected populations and risk management. At the same time, it will reinforce FAO’s focus on preparedness, response and sustained recovery,” the UN agency said in a statement.

Per Byman said the partnership will help the FAO to put into place the mechanisms to support vulnerable populations before, during and after emergencies.

“This will allow us to accelerate our efforts to target people at the key points of need and deliver assistance to them more effectively. We will encourage other donors to support the same vision” said Laurent Thomas, FAO Assistant Director-General for Technical Cooperation.

By Ekow Quandzie

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