The Workshop on Agricultural and Rural Development 'Sharing of Best Practices and Success Stories within the Poverty Reduction Framework' was organized by the SESRIC and IDB on 16-18 September 2010 in Antalya, Turkey. Experts and practitioners from various OIC Member Countries including Bangladesh, Burkina Faso, Indonesia, Pakistan, Malaysia, Senegal, Sudan, Tajikistan, Tunisia, Turkey, Uganda and Yemen and from regional and international organisations including the OIC General Secretariat, COMCEC Coordination Office, ICCI, AAAID, ACSAD, AGRA, AOAD, FAO, ICARDA and IFAD attended the workshop. Mr. Atilla Karaman, Researcher, represented the SESRIC thereat.
The workshop had the following objectives:
- to be a forum for exchange of knowledge, experiences and best practices related to agriculture and rural development;
- to assess shortcomings associated with the implementation of earlier Agriculture and Rural Development Programs by Multilateral Development Banks (MDBs)/Institutions and explore ways and means to overcome these difficulties in the different areas of IDB intervention;
- to develop recommendations and proposals for poverty reduction through Agriculture and Rural Development; and
- to brainstorm and share new programs that may be undertaken in the Least Developed Member Countries with a specific emphasis on the spirit of 'South-South Cooperation'.
The workshop was conducted around the following thematic areas:
- Integrated value chain interventions
- Improving the productivity, profitability and sustainability of small-holder farming
- Community Driven Development (CDD)
- Gender empowerment
- Enhancing sustainable management of natural resources
- Rural infrastructure
The Workshop participants recognized with consensus that there is a strong link between the Agriculture and Integrated Rural Development, and the Poverty Reduction and Food Security. Considering the huge impact of the agriculture sector’s development on poverty reduction, the participants stated that it was extremely important to promote unutilized potential within OIC Member Countries to attain food security.
The Workshop recognized the importance of private sector involvement in the development of agriculture sector through the concept of Public-Private Partnership (PPP) whereby the governments of the Member Countries provide necessary infrastructure and enabling environment (private sector friendly policies and regulations) and the private sector organisations bring foreign direct investment and operational efficiency in the sector.
The Workshop emphasized the transfer of knowledge from one Member Country to another thereby encouraging a more collaborative approach between the participating institutions with each one concentrating on improving different but compatible products.
The Workshop also stressed collaboration and establishing partnership between the OIC institutions, IDB and other specialised institutions in the agricultural sector in order to effectively promote the sector in the potentially least developed member countries.
The Workshop focused on shared best practices and how to increase the resilience of the food security system in the member countries.
The results of the workshop will be submitted to the "Exchange of Views Sessions" to be held during the 26th Session of the COMCEC Ministerial Meeting on 5-8 October 2010 in Istanbul.