SSTC boosting agrifood systems

Anping Ye

What you need to know:

  • The Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) has been spearheading cooperation among countries of the global South for more than 40 years, working through its extensive country-level presence.

Countries in the Global South offer countless development solutions, delivered in the form of knowledge, good practices, innovative policies, technologies and resources.

How can we facilitate the effective transfer and upscaling of these new practices from one country to another? 

This is where South-South and Triangular Cooperation (SSTC) comes in. It promotes and facilitates the sharing of effective approaches for more sustainable and inclusive agrifood systems.

SSTC projects and programmes support strengthening the capacity of the member states in raising the profile of food security and nutrition on national and regional agendas, especially through facilitating policy dialogues, peer-to peer learning, exchange of knowledge transfer of technologies, upscaling and replicating best practices. 

The Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) has been spearheading cooperation among countries of the global South for more than 40 years, working through its extensive country-level presence.

By virtue of this cooperation, women-owned businesses thrive, as in the case of Ms Loyda Twinomujuni  in Uganda, providing local employment and food security. The FAO-China South-South Cooperation (SSC) programme, has made it possible for Loyda to increase her milk production, run a farm where she rears cattle and pigs, and improve her livelihood overall.

Since 2020, FAO has also joined forces with the Republic of Korea and is implementing an SSTC project to enhance rice value chains in Ivory Coast, Tanzania, and the Philippines.

The South-South and South-North sharing of knowledge, ideas and strategies for addressing development issues, also remains a valuable reservoir for potential change and an incentive for sustainable development.

We are also witnessing a strong willingness of beneficiary countries to financially engage in SSTC, which is a testimony of its concrete results achieved to date at field level and that SSTC is becoming the most effective delivery mechanism for the transformation of the agrifood system.

One of the most recent financial contributions received has been from the government for the sum of $9.6m through a Unilateral Trust Fund (UTF), in addition to $2.4m already contributed by China for Phase III of the project.

The agrifood sector also remains a key source of food, income and employment, and reactivation and transformation of the agrifood systems is critical to ensure food and livelihood security and a sustainable recovery from the crisis, in the Global South.

For this reason, FAO recognises the importance of engaging with the private sector and other non-State actors, to promote the spread and uptake of new technologies and innovations in the global south and to strengthen market-related measures, including policies, to support these efforts. 

On September 12, we celebrated the UN Day for South-South Cooperation, which is an important reminder that SSTC is also an essential mechanism to advance the attainment of the SDGs.

Countries in the global South are still facing a range of challenges in achieving the SDGs, including SDG1 No poverty and SDG2 Zero hunger. However, these countries are also reservoirs of home-grown development solutions in the areas of agriculture and food security, that could be further replicated and scaled up through SSTC.

I strongly believe that we are experiencing a renewed SSTC momentum, which foresees brighter and stronger cooperation between countries of the global south and potential new partners. 

We must, therefore, seize these moments and join forces with other development partners, to further mainstream SSTC, for the greater good of humanity and to build sustainable, inclusive, and healthy agrifood systems.

Anping Ye is the director of South-South and Triangular Cooperation Division, Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO)

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