Over two days of meetings at the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) in Paris, agriculture ministers and representatives from about 50 countries agreed to redouble their efforts and implement better practices to feed the growing world population, fight climate change, and ensure that farmers and workers can make a successful living from agricultural production.
The meeting was co-chaired by the Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau and her New Zealand counterpart, the Honourable Damien O’Connor. This role acknowledged the leadership of Canada’s producers in sustainable development and ensuring global food security.
Although the challenges faced by the sector are similar around the world, each country adopts different approaches to meet their needs. The meeting allowed the Ministers to discuss best practices, and to reaffirm the importance of collaboration to encourage growth in the sector.
With this in mind, the participating countries asked the OECD, an organization whose mission it is to collect and analyze evidence-based data, to explore actions that would allow a better comparison of how each country is evolving their policies and sustainable development.
To conclude the meeting, Ministers Bibeau and O’Connor released a joint statement noting the productivity of discussions.
Additionally, participating OECD nations established a shared vision and goals for the agricultural sector through a Declaration on Transformative Solutions for Sustainable Agriculture and Food Systems.
At the meeting, Minister Bibeau had several bilateral meetings to deepen relationships with key partners:
- Marc Fesneau, France’s Minister of Agriculture and Food Sovereignty;
- Luis Planas, Spain’s Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food and Environmental Affairs;
- Atsushi Nonaka, Japan’s State Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries;
- Mark Spencer, the United Kingdom’s Minister of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs;
- Charlie McConalogue, Ireland’s Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine.
Minister Bibeau reminded her counterparts about Canada’s reputation as a trustworthy trading partner and discussed opportunities for enhanced cooperation in the agricultural sector.
Prior to the OECD meeting, Minister Bibeau met with various agricultural stakeholders in Paris, notably:
- A round table with French importers of Canadian agricultural products; two bilateral meetings with French agri-food companies that are making important investments in Canada; and,
- A meeting with the World Organisation for Animal Health DG, Dr. Monique Eloit to discuss global animal health standards in international trade.
Believing firmly that resilient and productive world food systems are essential to the sustainable growth of our economy, the Government of Canada continues to work with international partners and organizations that assemble countries with similar objectives, like the OECD.
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