YEREVAN, February 28. / ARKA /. Oxfam GB Armenia has launched today a project designed to improve regional food security in the South Caucasus through national strategies and small holder production worth a total of 600,000 euros.
Margarita Hakobyan, head of Oxfam GB Armenia, speaking at the launching ceremony, said the project is funded by the EU and is implemented by Oxfam in collaboration with the Armenian ministry of agriculture.
She said the goal of this four-year program is to ensure that small farmers, particularly women farmers, be involved in the development and implementation of food security strategy issues in order to ensure transparency of the process.
She said the food security of the South Caucasus region is one of the most important issues of the millennium and this is why the EU gives it a special attention. It is implementing similar projects also in Georgia and Azerbaijan.
She also expressed confidence that the project will not only enhance food security in the country, but also increase the production of local agricultural products.
Deputy agriculture minister Robert Makaryan said the ministry of agriculture and Oxfam set up a working group that involves all stakeholders and will develop a strategy for the sustainable development of rural areas and agriculture for 2015-2025 with the focus on food security.
He said the project’s activities are in tune with the main directions of the government’s policy in the agrarian sector. He said the Agricultural Union, founded in 2011 at the initiative of Oxfam and consisting of 14 local and international organizations is also involved in this project.
According to Makaryan, the ministry of agriculture jointly with Oxfam plans also to finalize a number of draft legislations, to stimulate cooperation in agricultural sector and monitor the implementation of some projects.
Oxfam is an independent international charity organization founded in 1942 in the UK (Oxford) working in more than 70 countries. -0-