Singapore successfully hosted the 38th Meeting of the ASEAN Ministers on Agriculture and Forestry (AMAF) on 6 October 2016, and the 16th Meeting of the AMAF Plus Three (AMAF+3) on 7 October 2016. In his opening address for the meetings, Minister Khaw stressed the importance of agriculture in ASEAN and the need for the region to strengthen cooperation. Under the chairmanship of Minister for National Development, Mr Lawrence Wong, the AMAF platform continued to provide leadership and established strong regional cooperation in agriculture, food security, fisheries and forestry matters.
“Agriculture will always be a key priority for ASEAN. Whether it is to ensure food security for our people or to tackle emerging concerns in agriculture such as antimicrobial resistance, it is important that regional cooperation and partnerships are strengthened.”
Coordinating Minister for Infrastructure
Minister for National Development
and Minister for Transport, Mr Khaw Boon Wan
Some of the key outcomes of the AMAF meeting were the adoption of the Key Performance Indicators for the Strategic Plan for ASEAN Cooperation in Food, Agriculture and Forestry (2016-2025), and the Strategic Plans of Action for various sectoral working groups. Progress and achievements were also attained in the harmonisation of standards for food, agriculture, and forestry products across the member states.
(8th and 9th from right) Minister for National Development & Second Minister for Finance, Mr Lawrence Wong and Minister of State for National Development & Trade and Industry, Dr Koh Poh Koon with ASEAN ministers.
The ministers also discussed the impact of antimicrobial resistance in agriculture as this resistance can threaten global public health, and significantly impact agriculture, food security and safety, as well as food trade. ASEAN ministers have agreed to strengthen regional cooperation to use antimicrobials prudently, enhance surveillance and research, and promote good animal husbandry practice to mitigate adverse impacts in this area.
The fishery sector also made headways in enhancing sustainable fisheries management, collaborative research, information and data exchange, as well as collaboration between the public and private sectors. Likewise, strides were made in promoting sustainable forestry practices through the implementation of a number of initiatives.
Following this, ASEAN ministers met their counterparts from China, Japan, and the Republic of Korea on 7 October 2016. The AMAF+3 meeting, also chaired by Minister Wong, has helped to further enhance cooperation between the countries in areas such as food security, as well as climate change mitigation and adaptation. Progress in the implementation of an emergency rice reserve and development of a food security information system was noted.
The next AMAF meetings will convene in Thailand in 2017.
Read more about the meetings and Minister Khaw's opening speech here.
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Last updated on Tuesday, April 14, 2020