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Prime Minister launches ‘National Zero Hunger Action Program’- SDPI’s efforts lauded

Mar 16 - Mar 21

Time Not Specified

PC Bhurban and Marriot Islamabad

This
is with great pleasure and honor that Prime Minister, Syed Yousaf Raza Gillani,
on the deliberations of Ministry of National Food Security with partner
organizations including Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI), has inaugurated
the ‘National Zero Hunger Action Program’, at ‘National Conference on Food
Security in Pakistan’ held on 16-21, March 2012. Prime Minister, while chairing
the concluding session also announced the establishment of ‘National Council
for Food Security’ in Pakistan.

The strategic national workshop, which lasted for one week, was organized by Ministry
of National Food Security and Research and supported by Sustainable Development
Policy Institute (SDPI), UN World Food Programme (WFP, UN Food and Agriculture
Organization (FAO, and OXFAM International. SDPI, which earlier also advocated
for creation of food security ministry, facilitated the workshop’s organization
which was aimed to produce a set of guidelines and frameworks for National Zero
Hunger Action Program along with the operational strategy of the newly created
Ministry of National Food Security and Research.

The main focus of the workshop was to trace the pathways to achieve food and nutritional
security for a growing population while addressing the food security challenges
in the country. Within the realm of the workshop, topics extending to nutrition,
access to food, water, provincial food and agricultural setups, women empowerment,
livelihoods, mobilization of local resources, and reaching the food poor,
particularly the malnourished segments of our society were covered.

Speaking on the occasion, Prime Minister said, he is delighted over unveiling of
National Zero Hunger Program and assured that this programme would not duplicate
what the provincial departments are doing, rather it will facilitate and support
the efforts of federating units in fulfilling the vital goal of food secure Pakistan.
He expressed gratitude to WFP, UNICEF, UNDP, USDA, USAID, SDPI, Oxfam and FAO
who brought experts particularly from Indonesia
and Rome to share
their best practices.

Inspired by Brazilian and Indonesian Zero Hunger Programs, Pakistan’s ‘National
Zero Hunger Program’ is a five year plan that would reach to a total of 61
million food insecure people across the country with a total cost of 16 billion
US dollars. The program, in its first year, will reach to 12 million people
which are 20 percent of total affected population with a cost of US 1.04
billion dollar.

Ministry of Food Security has also signed a letter of intent with WFP, under
which some 500,000 metric tones of wheat, donated by government of Pakistan will
be converted by WFP into nutritious food commodities that will be used to
combat hunger among the most vulnerable sections of society particularly malnourished
children, pregnant women and primary school children. These supplies will include
mineral and vitamin fortified wheat flour, high energy biscuits and fortified
pastes for the treatment and prevention of malnutrition among infants, and all
of these products will be produced in Pakistan.