Report of the World Food Council.

  • Author: UN General Assembly (34th sess. : 1979-1980)
  • Document source:
  • Date:
    14 December 1979

34. RESOLUTIONS ADOPTED ON THE REPORTS OF THE SECOND COMMITTEE
110. Report of the World Food Council

The General Assembly, Recalling its resolutions 3201 (S-VI) and 3202 (S-VI) of 1 May 1974, containing the Declaration and the Programme of Action on the Establishment of a New International Economic Order, 3281 (XXIX) of 12 December 1974, containing the Charter of Economic Rights and Duties of States, and 3362 (S-VII) of 16 September 1975 on development and international economic cooperation, as well as the agreed conclusions of the Committee of the Whole Established under General Assembly Resolution 32/174 on some aspects concerning food and agriculture,[1] Recalling also its resolution 3348 (XXIX) of 17 December 1974, by which it established the World Food Council to serve as a co-ordinating mechanism to provide over-all integrated and continuing attention to the successful co-ordination and follow-up of policies concerning food production, nutrition, food security, food trade and food aid, as well as other related matters, by all organizations of the United Nations system, Recalling further the Programme of Action to Eradicate Hunger and Malnutrition, contained in the Manila Communiqué of the World Food Council[2] and adopted by the General Assembly in its resolution 32/52 of 8 December 1977, as well as the Mexico Declaration of the World Food Council,[3] adopted by the Assembly in its resolution 33/90 of 15 December 1978, Bearing in mind the provisions of resolution 33/90 concerning the implementation of the decisions, resolutions and programmes regarding food adopted since the World Food Conference in 1974, Noting with regret the slow progress made in solving the fundamental food problems facing the developing countries, in particular food-priority countries and other developing countries with large food deficits, whose food situation is still deteriorating, and, in this context, noting with deep concern that the target of an annual growth rate of 4 per cent in the food and agriculture sector of developing countries, established in the International Development Strategy for the Second United Nations Development Decade and endorsed by the World Food Conference in 1974, has not been achieved, Noting with concern the strong impact of food-stuff imports on the balance of payments of food-importing developing countries, in particular the least developed countries, Recognizing that the responsibility for the development of food and agricultural production lies primarily with the developing countries themselves and that there is an increasing effort and growing commitment by developing countries to accelerate the development of their food and agriculture sectors, Reaffirming its strong commitment to overcoming hunger and malnutrition everywhere and, in that context, the need for greater international action to improve the production and distribution of food, Taking into account the relevant parts of the Declaration of Principles and the Programme of Action adopted by the World Conference on Agrarian Reform and Rural Development,[4] Expressing its deep concern at the fact that a substantial part of world resources, material as well as human, continues to be diverted to armaments with detrimental effect on international security and on efforts to achieve the new international economic order, including the solution of food problems, and calling upon Governments to take effective measures in the field of real disarmament that would increase the possibilities of allocation of the resources now being used for military purposes to economic and social development, especially development of developing countries, and to upgrading their food conditions, Having considered the report of the World Food Council on the work of its fifth ministerial session, held at Ottawa from 3 to 7 September 1979, [5]

1. Expresses its appreciation and thanks to the Government and people of Canada for the excellent facilities and generous hospitality provided for the World Food Council at its fifth ministerial session;

2. Takes note with satisfaction of the agreed conclusions of the Committee of the Whole Established under General Assembly Resolution 32/174 on some aspects concerning food and agriculture, which constituted an important input for the work of the World Food Council at its fifth ministerial session;

3. Takes note with satisfaction of the report of the World Food Council on the work of its fifth ministerial session;

4. Takes note of the concept of food sector strategies which emerged from the World Food Council consultations, invites the Council to examine this matter further, having due regard for the principle of full respect for the development plans and priorities of developing countries, with a view to enabling interested countries, particularly food-deficit developing countries, to consider the advisability or otherwise of adopting food strategies within the framework of their national development programmes, and to report to the General Assembly at its thirty-fifth session, and considers that development assistance agencies, whether national or international, should not make the preparation of a national food strategy a condition for development assistance;

5. Strongly urges developed countries, international institutions and others able to provide development assistance to increase substantially their assistance on concessional terms to the food sector in order to facilitate for developing countries the achievement of the agreed target of an annual growth rate of 4 per cent in agricultural production, for which an estimated necessary element of external assistance is $8.3 billion with $6.5 billion on concessional terms, at 1975 prices, as indicated in the Programme of Action to Eradicate Hunger and Malnutrition contained in the Manila Communiqué of the World Food Council;

6. Further urges that this target should be reached if possible by the end of 1980, having regard to the deep concern of the international community as a whole regarding its urgent nature;

7. Endorses the call of the World Food Council for greater equity in food distribution through more direct action by Governments and stresses the need for supportive action by all Governments, with due regard to the policies followed and conditions prevailing in the respective countries;

8. Calls upon Governments, all relevant organs, organizations and bodies of the United Nations system, other international organizations and the international community as a whole to give very high priority in their policies, programmes and actions to the eradication of hunger and malnutrition everywhere in the world;

9. Urges all Governments that have not yet agreed to the conclusion of a new food aid convention for securing the achievement of an absolute minimum flow of assistance of at least 10 million tons, even in times of high prices and food shortage, to reconsider their position and urges that every effort should be made to enlist new contributors and to increase the commitments of existing ones in order that a new food aid convention can be concluded without delay, in any case not later than the middle of 1980, and without awaiting the conclusion of a new international grain agreement;

10. Urges all countries, particularly those developed countries which are not yet contributing to it, to achieve immediately the 500,000-ton target for the International Emergency Reserve and to consider its enlargement in response to growing emergency needs;

11. Urges the traditional donor countries and those in a position to do so to provide additional food aid to developing countries in order to assist them in building national food reserves;

12. Strongly calls upon donor countries to do their utmost to preserve the nutritional value, including the protein element, of their food aid;

13. Calls upon traditional donor countries and those in a position to do so, considering the growing need of the developing countries for agricultural inputs and the increasing costs of the latter, to increase their assistance for agricultural inputs, especially fertilizer, through the appropriate bilateral and/or multilateral channels, in particular the International Fertilizer Supply Scheme of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations,[6] and also to make substantial contributions to the Seed Improvement and Development Programme and the Action Programme for Prevention of Food Losses of the Food and Agriculture Organization, so as to reach the agreed funding level of $20 million for each;

14. Recommends that the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, the World Bank and the regional development banks should consider undertaking a systematic assessment of the need to improve food security infrastructure at the national level as a basis for a major investment effort in the developing countries which request such assistance;

15. Invites the International Monetary Fund to consider providing, within the context of its financing facilities, additional balance-of-payments support for meeting the rise in the food import bills of low-income, food-deficit countries;

16. Notes with deep concern that only limited progress has been achieved towards the solution of the long-standing problems of international trade in agricultural products which adversely affect exports, particularly of developing countries, and whose solution could make an important contribution to improving over-all food production in the world;

17. Calls for urgent action in the different negotiating forums to move towards the approval and implementation of proposals to bring about the reduction and elimination of barriers to trade in agricultural products, in particular in relation to those of export interest to developing countries, and thus to facilitate, inter alia, more efficient patterns of production;

18. Urges developed countries to make their best efforts to adjust those sectors of their agricultural and manufacturing economies which require protection against exports from developing countries, thus facilitating access to the markets of food and agricultural products;

19. Recommends that the generalized system of preferences should be expanded to cover a wider range of processed and semi-processed products and, whenever possible, agricultural commodities and that the system of information on using the generalized system of preferences, providing technical assistance, including assistance in the field of research, development and marketing, should be enlarged and improved to enable developing countries to take full advantage of such preferences;

20. Recommends that the World Food Council, in accordance with its mandate, should give continuing attention to the impact of food trade on levels of food production in the world, in particular with reference to the economies of the developing countries, using to the maximum extent possible the necessary inputs which the different organs and organizations of the United Nations system should provide;

21. Recommends that all Member States and international organizations concerned should take appropriate steps to put into operation the Five-Point Plan of Action on World Food Security approved by the Council of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations at its seventy-fifth session and endorsed by the World Food Council at its fifth ministerial session,[7] mainly as an interim measure until a new international grain agreement has been concluded.

104th plenary meeting
14 December 1979


[1] Official Records of the General Assembly, Thirty-fourth Session, Supplement No. 34 (A/34/34), part two, sect. II, para. 18. [2] Ibid., Thirty-second Session, Supplement No. 19 (A/32/19), part one, para. 1. [3] Ibid., Thirty-third Session, Supplement No. 19 (A/33/19 and Corr. 1), part one para. 1. [4] See Report of the World Conference on Agrarian Reform and Rural Development, Rome, 12-20 July 1979 (WCARRD/ REP); transmitted to the members of the General Assembly by a note of the Secretary-General (A/34/485). [5] Official Records of the General Assembly, Thirty-fourth Session, Supplement No. 19 (A/34/19). [6] Approved by the Council of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations in its resolution 1/63 of 19 July 1974 (see Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Report of the Council of FAO, Sixty-third Session, para. 26). [7] .See Official Records of the General Assembly, Thirty-fourth Session, Supplement No. 19 (A/34/19), part one, para. 27 (d), and part two, para. 65.
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