Farmers' Strategy for Ag Development & World Food Security

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   This document has been made available in electronic format  
            by the Committee for the Promotion and 
               Advancement of Cooperatives COPAC
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                    WORLD FARMERS' CONGRESS
                    Versailles, April, 1996

                      FARMERS' STRATEGY
                 FOR AGRICULTURAL DEVELOPMENT
                   AND WORLD FOOD SECURITY


     This statement outlines the reasons for and
     possible elements of a new policy perspective for
     agricultural development and world food security,
     elaborated and proposed by farmers themselves on
     the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the
     International Federation of Agricultural Producers,
     at the World Farmers' Congress in Versailles in
     April 1996. This policy stance is a contribution
     of world farmers to the World Food Summit. 


            1. CHALLENGES FOR FOOD AND AGRICULTURE

1.   The greatest challenges that lie ahead for food and
agriculture are related to the quality of human life. These
include the eradication of poverty and hunger and the achievement
of rural-urban balance. Involvement of agricultural producers in
initiatives and decisions affecting their lives, their
involvement in decisions in the future shape of societies and
their integration in the market systems in a fair and beneficial
manner is essential to achieving these goals.  

2.   The greatest challenge that lies ahead for food and
agriculture is therefore how we organise our societies and our
future, how we decide on our priorities and lifestyle, and on how
much we value peoples' participation and democracy. 

3.   By the year 2025, it is estimated that there will be 2.5
billion more people to feed. This must be done in an
environmentally-sustainable manner. Farmers have long proven that
given the right incentives and access to research facilities and
services, they can meet such a challenge. Top-down approaches
aimed at increasing agricultural production substantially need
therefore to be avoided. 

4.   The  challenge of eradicating poverty and hunger is an
income rather than a production problem. The relationship between
population growth and food availability during the course of the
last quarter century provide a relevant example of this fact.
Between 1969 and 1994, world population has grown by 1.6 billion
- an increase which is approximately equal to the actual world
population in 1900. According to FAO statistics, food
availability per capita has grown during the last thirty years,
including in the least developed countries. During the same
period, the number of malnourished persons has declined from 950
million to 800 million. The majority of worlds 1 billion poor are
in the rural areas of the developing countries - they are mostly
small-scale farmers. 

5.   The challenge of establishing a sustainable rural-urban
balance is a problem of social priorities. Today, urban areas are
growing at an unprecedented pace. 61 % of world's population is
expected to be living in cities by year 2025. This means that
many of the life-support mechanisms will be seriously strained,
unless rural-urban balance is rethought, and rural development
redefined in a more optimistic and dynamic manner.  

6.   For several decades, societies and governments have pursued
policies which have dictated against rural development. In
developing countries, substantial resources were siphoned off
from rural areas in favour of industrialisation and urban
development. In industrialised countries, few steps were taken
to ensure survival of rural communities. As cities pursue their
expansion in the twenty-first century, rural areas should have
the chance to pursue their own development in a balanced and
economically viable manner. 

7.   Today's challenges in food and agriculture can only be met
through the involvement of farmers, fisherfolk and foresters in
initiatives and decisions affecting their lives. Full and formal
recognition needs to be accorded to farmers' representative
organizations, from grassroots to the global level. They must be
involved in decisions in the future shape of societies and their
integration in the market systems in a fair and beneficial
manner.  At present, there are 2,4 billion people working in
agriculture, representing 45 % of the world's population.
Farmers, as producers of food, must be given the necessary
economic incentives and enabled access to know-how and resources,
so that they can realise their full potential as productive
members of their respective nations. 


       2. FAMILY FARMING AT THE HEART OF THIS CHALLENGE


8.   The continuity of  the economic, social and environmental
sustainability of the family farming system of agriculture lies
at the heart of this challenge. 

9.   Only through family farming and development of the
micro-economy can agricultural and food production take on a
human size, and be both a provider of food as well as of revenue,
thereby providing a solution for the eradication of poverty and
hunger. Family farming and small-scale agriculture needs to be
enabled and encouraged, because of the following reasons :

     (a)   When family farming and small-scale agriculture is
     used as an engine of growth, increases in rural incomes
     enhance the effective demand for locally produced goods and
     services, thereby stimulating development in industry and
     the services sector. 

     (b)   Increases in rural incomes are usually beneficial
     also for farmers worldwide as food imports usually increase
     in line with increases in purchasing power. 

10.  Only through family farming can the social tissue of rural
communities be kept alive, and provide a natural alternative to
the cities, thereby contributing towards the well-being of both
urban and rural areas. For this purpose, rural development must
be re-thought and revitalised as follows :

     (a)   Societies and governments must adopt a policy of
     favouring creation of wealth in the rural areas, rather
     than siphoning it off through direct and indirect taxation
     to urban areas. Farmers must be allowed a fair return for
     their efforts. Rural and urban development can only take
     place if farmers and rural communities have the income to
     sustain the local and urban economies  through their
     expenditures and investments, and not through taxation
     mechanisms. Siphoning of resources away from agriculture,
     as well as general neglect  of agricultural and rural
     development will only retard overall economic growth of
     countries concerned.

     (b)   Societies and governments must adopt a policy of
     recognising the professional status and contribution of
     farmers and family farms to the social fabric and national
     economy ; the provision of necessary incentives for
     attaining vibrant, sustainable farming communities is
     essential. 

     (c)   Societies and governments must explore possibilities
     of application of new technology, including information
     technology, to rural development and stimulation of
     micro-economies, through effective rural-to-rural and
     rural-to-urban linkages.

11.  Family farms can meet these challenges and play their full
role in society by acknowledging the contribution of family
members, especially of women, to farm household resource
management. Women farmers must be acknowledged as farmers in
their own right. 


                3. LEADERSHIP ROLE OF FARMERS


12.  During the last fifteen years, governments have
substantially retreated from agriculture. A long period of
government-centred agricultural development has come to an end.
Many models of agricultural and rural development, which were
inevitably based on the assumption of government-centred
operations, are no longer applicable. 

13.  There is now a strong necessity to redefine a vision for
agricultural and rural development and redefine a division of
roles among farmers and their representative organizations,
governments and private sector institutions.   

14.  Farmers take up the leadership role in proposing a new
policy perspective for the future,  by establishing this farmers'
strategy for agricultural development and world food security on
the eve of the World Food Summit.


                 4. RETREAT FROM AGRICULTURE


15.  The debt problem in developing countries has given rise to
the application of structural adjustment programmes with its
often devastating impact on family farming especially in resource
poor areas and to the subsequent retreat of governments from
agriculture. 

16.  Retreat of governmental involvement and of resources from
agriculture since the 1980's was on a massive scale, provoking
substantial qualitative and quantitative changes in this sector. 

17.  Once one of the highest priorities in development,
agriculture fell sharply in the development priorities since the
1980's. Development assistance to agriculture fell from 17% to
7% in the OECD bilateral development assistance figures over a
decade. This decline was complemented by weakening of development
assistance commitments in general. In mid-1990's, development
assistance by OECD countries fell to its lowest level in
proportional terms for the last twenty years -  being 0.3 percent
of GNP and much below the target figure of 0.7 percent. 

18.  In terms of sectoral emphasis, governments retreated from
agriculture during the structural adjustment programmes. Many of
the vital services to agriculture were cut. Agriculture dropped
in governmental development priorities. 

19.  Development agendas of this period were mostly shaped by
promotional non-governmental organisations. Many of the top-down
development initiatives carried out by governments had not worked
and governmental development assistance was in crisis.
Non-governmental organizations offered criticism as  well as
alternatives. Industrialised country governments gradually
incorporated the agendas of these organizations into their own
development agendas. Agriculture, however, was not a top priority
on the agendas of promotional non-governmental organizations.
Rather, concern was focused upon broad environmental and social
issues. 


   5.  PERIOD OF TRANSITION :  END OF TOP-DOWN AGRICULTURE


20.  The World Summit on Social Development, in March 1995, in
Copenhagen, officially marked the end of top-down agriculture and
the beginning of people-centred development. The Summit
recognised;

     -   farmers and farmers' organizations, including farmers'
     cooperatives, as an important pillar of civil society,
     equal in status to workers, employers and their
     representative organizations. 

     -   people's organizations as an important third force,
     complementary to market forces and to the authority of
     governments. 

21.  The Summit called for an active policy by governments of
promoting an economically-viable, people-centred development, in
continuous dialogue  with people's representative organizations. 

22.  Today, within the context of economic liberalisation and
democratisation, farmers organizations including farmers'
cooperatives are expected to take a much greater responsibility
in farming activities, in the upstream and downstream of
agricultural operations and in agricultural and rural development
in general. 

23.  Important problems remain in this period of transition,
especially in the small-scale sector. Many agricultural
institutions serving the small-scale sector have been dismantled.
Thus, small-scale farmers are faced with a vacuum, which they can
only fill if they are able to organise themselves. Important
resource and know-how issues also remain, especially in terms of
availability of appropriate infrastructures and technologies. 

24.  In any new strategy, farmers and farmers' organizations
including farmers' cooperatives need to take up a central and
effective role, with the government assuming a facilitating role.
Only in this way can success in agricultural and rural
development be assured. 


          6. CHANGING ROLES OF FARMERS AND GOVERNMENT


25.  A new strategy for agricultural development and food
security requires a redefinition of the role of governments,
farmers and private sector institutions. 

     (A)  CHANGING ROLE OF GOVERNMENTS IN AGRICULTURAL 
                   AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT

26.  The role of governments in agriculture has undergone
fundamental change, mainly because of the processes of reform and
adjustment. In the past, governments often played a key role as
a manager of national agricultural systems, with centralised
decision-making structures. Today, agricultural and rural
development have fallen sharply in the development priorities.
This is partly due to the retreat of governments from agriculture
following the structural adjustment programmes, and partly due
to a lack of a new strategy for agricultural development which
did not rely on a central role by government. 

27.  A closer partnership and dialogue is now required between
farmers and government on a new basis. Governments' renewed
commitment to agricultural and rural development, stability and
peace, as well as formal recognition, encouragement and
enablement of farmer initiatives are the essential elements of
this dialogue.

   (B) CHANGING ROLES OF FARMERS AND FARMERS' ORGANIZATIONS 

28.  Farmers are at present in the forefront of agricultural and
rural development. Much of the entrepreneurial responsibility is
now transferred back to farmers. Farmers have to take up much
greater responsibilities in the present market-oriented,
decentralised system. These responsibilities pertain not only to
the upstream and downstream of production and to their
integration in the market systems but also to development of
rural communities and agriculture in general. Existence of strong
farmers' organizations including farmers' cooperatives is
therefore essential for the success of the farming community in
the twenty-first century. 


                7. ELEMENTS FOR A NEW STRATEGY


29.  In the new strategy for agricultural development and food
security, farmers and farmers' organizations must constitute a
central component, linked to other sectors and institutions,
acting in coordination with other farmers' organizations and
institutions. Farmers must be able to master modern technology
and institutional arrangements, operate in a favourable policy
environment, and be endowed with adequate infrastructure. 

30.  The elements of a new strategy concern the following : 

     -   Farmers Organizations 
     -   Linkages with other institutions and sectors
     -   Transfers of technology and institutional know-how 
     -   Infrastructural issues
     -   Favourable policy environment
     -   Coordination

               (A) FARMERS ORGANIZATIONS 

31.  Farmers' organizations constitute a central pillar in any
future agricultural development strategy. 

32.  The number of farmers in developing counties, especially in
the small scale farming sector, are of the order of hundreds of
millions, where they represent the majority of the working
population in these countries. It is vital that they are able to
articulate their views, standpoint and needs in a coordinated
manner for the purpose of self-organization, as well as for the
purpose of influencing decision makers, and for making effective
alliances. This can only be done through strong farmers'
organizations.

33.  Genuine farmer organizations are organizations governed by
farmers, which work for farmers' interests.  These include
farmers' associations, farmers' unions, agricultural
cooperatives, farmers' marketing organizations and chambers of
agriculture. Regular elections of farm leadership are a key
element of this definition. 

34.  Farmer organizations need to be representative, democratic,
transparent, credible, accountable to farmers and open to all
farmers, irrespective of gender, social status, political
affiliation, race, tribe or religion.

35.  The quality and strength of a farmers' organization is based
on the degree of broad-based farmer control on the organization
and the fulfilment of the organization's commitments and
obligations to farmers.

36.  The participation of women farmers and young farmers, and
their involvement and integration in the decision making
structures through elected posts, is vital for the strength and
future of farmers' organizations. 

37.  Functions of Farmers' Organizations are ;

     -   representational functions with governmental, private
     and non-governmental organizations which provide services
     to agriculture and rural areas. Analysis including analysis
     on economic policy, agricultural and rural issues for
     representational functions especially with government.

     -   linkages at the operational level with governmental,
     private and non-governmental organizations which provide
     services to agriculture and rural areas,

     -   services to members  including communication and
     advisory services, marketing services, as well as
     organizational support services including for cooperative
     and farmer-owned business undertakings.

38.  Whenever necessary, farmers' organizations must be further
strengthened, in line with IFAP's Worldwide Action for
Strengthening Farmers' Organizations, so that they can
effectively undertake functions of representation, linkages and
services. 

39.  Whenever the provision of an economic service is
unsatisfactory or absent in any region or sector, farmers should
be encouraged and assisted by farmers' organizations to set up
their own family or farmers' private company, farmers' marketing
organizations, or farmers' cooperatives, or to link up with
private sector companies on favourable terms. 

40.  Farmers' cooperatives and farmers' financial institutions
need to be strong so as to enable farmers an easier access
financial instruments and a greater proportion of value added in
the food chain. 

41.  Whenever appropriate and desirable, farmers' organizations
including farmers' cooperatives must be enabled to take over
agricultural services and parastatals previously run by the
state.

     (B) LINKAGES WITH OTHER INSTITUTIONS AND SECTORS

42.  In decentralised and democratic structures, effective
working links, cooperation and coordination between different
actors, sectors and institutions form the basis of sustainable
development. This contrasts sharply with centralised decision
making systems and structures, where there is little need for
such linkages. 

43.  Farmers' organizations including farmers' cooperatives need
to establish intersectoral and inter-institutional linkages due
to changes in the centralised models of government. These include
linkages with other sectors such as finance, trade, industry and
commerce, linkages with institutions servicing agriculture such
as development institutions, research and extension as well as
linkages with other civil society institutions such as trade
unions, employers' associations as well as non-governmental
organizations. 

44.  Inter-sectoral and inter-organizational exchange and
coordination can generate innovative attitudes and efficient use
of resources as people and institutions of different backgrounds
and aims work together, seeking complementarity and cooperation. 

45.  In cases requiring farmer representation, e.g. linkages with
agricultural research,  it is essential that effective working
links be established at all levels between farmers' organizations
and the institution in question. Non-involvement of farmers'
organizations and confinement of working links only with
individual farmers e.g. some cases of farming systems research,
weakens effective farmer participation.  

46.  In establishing linkages with any sector or organization,
farmers' organizations including farmers' cooperatives must
clarify and highlight their own role in that particular sector
or activity. For instance, in linking with agricultural
extension, farmers' organizations must know their own potential
in this particular service and negotiate a mutually beneficial
partnership on those grounds. Common activities, which may also
be viewed as actual and potential areas of overlap, are vital
components of cooperation. 

47.  Linkage mechanisms may include partnership agreements,
exchange of information, business transactions, coordination and
cooperation panels, as well as farmers' organization
representation on appropriate committees and boards.     

   (C) TRANSFERS OF TECHNOLOGY AND INSTITUTIONAL KNOW-HOW 

48.  Structural adjustment and liberalisation necessitate more
than ever transfer of technology and institutional know-how to
farmers. Farmers need to master the functioning of market
economies. They need the most appropriate knowledge and know-how,
including for instance, how to set up companies, how to market
one's produce, how to establish credit systems. Farmers also need
services and facilities for veterinary inspection, standards and
quality control, patenting rights, effective customs and policing
of trade rules, without which they cannot use the opportunities
opened by GATT. 

49.  Farmers' organizations and farmer-to-farmer cooperation can
play a vital role in facilitating transfers of technology and
know-how through exchange of information and ideas among farmers
and farmers' organizations. Farmers' development cooperation is
one of the most effective forms of development assistance for
farmers, as farmers organizations share similar working
procedures and objectives. Such exchange and dialogue should also
include economic cooperation, including direct marketing and
encouragement of foreign investment by farmer enterprises.

50.  New technology will have an important contribution to make
to achieving world food security. Developments in appropriate
technology, biotechnology, information technology need to be
encouraged. 

51.  In the process of new technology generation and application,
including its legal framework such as patenting rights and access
to genetic resources, care must be taken by governments to
discuss with farmers' representative organizations, the
consequences for farmers both in the short and long term.
Governments must defend farmers' privilege in this field.

              (D) INFRASTRUCTURAL ISSUES

52.  Farmers cannot operate effectively in the absence of
adequate and appropriate infrastructural and regulatory
framework. This problem is most visible in small-scale
resource-poor areas, where the absence of basic infrastructure
is a major impediment for economic survival of family farms and
for food self-reliance. 

53.  The trend towards reduced investment in agriculture must be
urgently reversed to enable the realisation of adequate
infrastructure, in the general sense of the term, in rural areas.

54.  Essential infrastructural and regulatory framework is as
follows;

     -   Property Rights : clarity in land tenure arrangements
     and resolution of disputes ; 

formalisation  of property rights so that the indisputable proof
of ownership can be used in the marketplace in various forms;
security of land tenure and minimal interference in farmers'
ability to farm. 

     -   Legal Infrastructure : rights, procedures and
     safeguards for agreements and contracts; farmers' access to
     legal services and their rights to act collectively.

     -   Financial Infrastructure : well-functioning banking
     systems, credit facilities and financial services ;
     training for farmers and farmers' organizations enabling
     them to use financial instruments, e.g. risk management
     instruments; framework enabling the use of agricultural
     stocks as collateral; regulatory framework facilitating
     development of farmers' financial institutions including
     farmers' cooperative banks. 

     -   Marketing Infrastructure : institutions and
     institutional arrangements which favour market
     transparency, e.g. wholesale markets, inter-
     sectorial/inter-professional networks, and dialogue;
     strengthening of farmer-controlled marketing channels e.g.
     farmers' businesses farmers' marketing organizations and
     cooperative marketing; alternative trading channels. 

     -   Information Infrastructure : provision of reliable
     market information, whether this be in the form of radio,
     newspapers, or as advisory services, e.g. market
     information systems to cut down on speculation; direct
     marketing based on information technology without passing
     through major distribution centres; product and market
     development facilities. 

     -   Infrastructure for Transport, Energy,
     Telecommunications, Security Arrangements : the basis for
     development of local, provincial and national  markets ;
     accessibility / profitability of rural areas, 

     -   Educational Infrastructure : basic literacy and
     numeracy for business transactions based on written
     contracts and for the facilitation of rapid and efficient 
     information flows.  

55.  Special measures for small-scale resource-poor areas, must
concentrate, on valorising the potential of these regions. The
provision of infrastructural facilities, through increased
investment in the rural areas is essential for the realisation
of the full potential of resource-poor regions.

56.  Innovative ways of financing of rural infrastructures must
be seriously explored, for example through involvement of the
private sector, financing institutions, increases in development
assistance, as well as through debt conversion. In cases where
economic incentives have been accorded to the agricultural
sector, mechanisms should be developed for the gradual conversion
of rural incomes into rural investment. 

              (E) FAVOURABLE POLICY ENVIRONMENT

57.  A favourable policy environment and good governance is
essential for agricultural and rural development - in particular,
a stable macro-economic environment at national, regional and
global levels. 

58.  In order to work and invest, farmers must have viable
farming operations. This requires remunerative prices for farm
products and availability of inputs and credit at affordable
prices. 

59.  Policies at national, regional and global levels must also
promote ecological sustainability including the conservation of
land and water resources, and social sustainability - maintaining
an adequate balance between rural and urban development. 

60.  The international policy environment must be conducive to
agricultural and rural development. For this purpose, promotion
of peace and economic cooperation among nations, resolution of
the debt problem, fair trading practices as described in trade
agreements  must be considered high priorities.

         (F) COORDINATION ISSUES IN DEVELOPMENT COOPERATION

61.  Coordination of the efforts of all actors in agricultural
and rural development is essential for the achievement of world
food self-reliance and for the eradication of poverty and hunger.
Efforts in this direction should go beyond an exchange of
information among the relevant institutions, and be carried out
in terms of quantifiable objectives and targets. 

62.  Such coordination should necessarily involve regular
consultations and involvement of farmers' organizations without
which such efforts may remain unfocused, under-utilised and
dispersed. 

63.  Partnership of farmers' organizations including farmers'
cooperatives with governmental and intergovernmental
organizations, as currently being carried out under IFAP's
Worldwide Action for Strengthening Farmers' Organizations, is a
vital component in the coordination of efforts. Many
intergovernmental organizations and agencies, within the
framework of their current activities, command relatively
important resources and know-how. Many do not normally associate
farmers' organizations with their activities, and do not yet
possess a mechanism of consultation with small-scale farmers.
Activities of intergovernmental organizations, in the field of
agricultural and rural development, would be further strengthened
if such linkages were established between intergovernmental
institutions and farmers organizations especially at the field
level. 

64.  Partnership of farmers' organizations including farmers'
cooperatives with governmental and intergovernmental
organizations should involve :

     -   active involvement of representative farmers
     organizations at national and local levels, in the
     conception, design and implementation of the
     inter-governmental agency projects. This would provide
     agencies with the necessary farmer participation and
     feedback, while enriching farmers' organizations through
     the skills, knowledge and expertise of intergovernmental
     agencies.  

     -   giving responsibility to existing farmers'
     organizations for the implementation of certain parts of
     intergovernmental projects. 

     -   carrying out joint programmes between farmers' and
     intergovernmental organizations, at the regional or country
     level.

65.  Farmers' movement-to-movement cooperation must be
strengthened through greater discussion and exchange among the
farmers' organizations concerned. Coordination among
farmer-to-farmer initiatives should include policy coordination
in development cooperation issues.

66.   At the regional level, farmers' organizations in developing
countries should promote increased exchange, dialogue and
coordination with farmers' organizations in the neighbouring
countries. They should assist emerging farmers' organizations in
the region concerned. They should also aim to establish
consultative and operational links with appropriate sub-regional
institutions, with the aim of promoting linkages among these
institutions and farmers' organizations.

                8. SUMMARY OF RECOMMENDATIONS 

67.  A commitment by society to agricultural and rural
development must to be renewed and strengthened. The decline of
agriculture in the development priorities has to be reversed by
a re-appreciation of  its global importance. 

68.  A new partnership for agricultural and rural development
must be established among the main stakeholders, with clarity of
purpose and a clear division of roles among governments, farmers
and farmers' organizations including farmers' cooperatives, and
other sectors and institutions. 
   
69.  Greater recognition must be accorded to farmers'
organizations including agricultural cooperatives. Meaningful
working relations must be established with them at all levels.
Whenever necessary, measures must be put in place for their
further strengthening including through encouragement of a
greater unity within the farm movement. 

70.  The contribution of farmers and farmers' organizations in
the economic sphere must be further facilitated and strengthened
through farmer cooperatives, farmers' marketing organizations and
farmer ownership of business enterprises. 

71.  The difference between farmers' organizations -
organizations owned and governed by farmers, working for farmers'
interests - and the promotional non-governmental organizations
(NGO's) which do not have lines of accountability to farmers must
be recognised. 

72.   Farmers must be trained to take up greater entrepreneurial
responsibilities including upstream and downstream of the
agricultural production sector. 

73.   A favourable overall macroeconomic framework, as well as
social and political stability must be provided for the
development of the agricultural sector. Agricultural policies
should focus on family farming.

74.   The essential infrastructural and regulatory framework,
including functional product markets, credit systems, land tenure
systems and technologies must be established, or reinforced. The
potential of small-scale resource-poor areas must be developed
through product and marketing schemes, and through the
development of marketing channels. 

75.  Linkages must be created and consolidated between farmers'
organizations and other sectors and institutions. 

76.  Measures must be taken to ensure transfer of know-how and
use of new technology, especially through greater dialogue
between farmers' organizations and appropriate research and
technology institutions, as well as through farmers' development
cooperation.

77.  Development of rural communities must be given a high
priority within the overall framework of achieving a sustainable
rural-urban balance.  

78.  While in certain circumstances food aid is necessary for
food security, trading rules must ensure that the provision of
food aid is not abused and does not provide a disincentive for
local production. Whenever possible and appropriate, food aid
programmes must also aim to procure food from neighbouring
countries. 


                      9. PLAN OF ACTION


79.  Farmers' organizations, united in this assembly, resolve to:

     -   continue our efforts for the promotion of the interests
     of family farmers, men and women, 

     -   continue our efforts and contribution for the
     improvement of food self-reliance including  farmers'
     recommendations to governments on agricultural policies,
     for the eradication of poverty and for the improvement of
     the economic and social status of farmers in enhanced
     collaboration and dialogue with our governments and in
     cooperation with all relevant and appropriate
     intergovernmental organizations, sectors and institutions, 

     -   continue our role of making representations to our
     governments on issues of agricultural and rural
     development, 

     -   encourage and promote appropriate attitudinal changes
     on the side of farmers, for taking up greater
     responsibilities in terms of self-organization and for
     taking up greater entrepreneurial responsibilities
     including upstream and downstream of agricultural
     production. 

     -   continue our efforts to strengthen farmers'
     organizations, including agricultural cooperatives, by :

          (i)   upholding our principal standards as farmers
          organizations, of being democratic, transparent,
          credible and open organizations accountable to and
          representative of farmers in our respective countries;
          
          (ii)   by assisting in the formation and development
          of farmers' organizations and 

          (iii)   by strengthening farmers' development
          cooperation and solidarity at all levels.

     -   continue our work for the recognition and enhancement
     of the roles of women farmers and young farmers in rural
     development, for their full recognition as farmers in their
     own right, and for their full integration in the
     decision-making structures of farmers' organizations
     through elected posts,    

     -   continue to encourage 

          (i)   the establishment of inter-sectoral and
          inter-organizational linkages, 
          (ii)    investments in rural areas and rural
          infrastructure, 

          (ii)   optimal application of new technologies for the
          improvement of rural incomes and welfare. 
     
80.  We call on governments and intergovernmental organizations
to; 
     -   secure peace and stable economic environment, assure
     human rights, security of tenure and ownership rights,
     establish and maintain worldwide standards in social and
     environmental fields 

     -   renew their commitment to agricultural and rural
     development as the basis for the achievement of increased
     food self-reliance, the eradication of hunger and poverty
     and for the achievement of a sustainable rural-urban
     balance,

     -   promote family farming,
     
     -   promote the establishment of a new partnership for
     agricultural and rural development among the main
     stakeholders,

     -   accord a greater recognition to and promote farmers'
     organizations in all appropriate institutions and fora, 

     -   facilitate establishment of linkages between farmers'
     organizations and governmental organizations and
     institutions which provide services to agriculture and
     rural areas, including agricultural research and extension
     agencies. Facilitate linkages with industry and trade.

     -   stimulate increased investment in rural infrastructures
     particularly in transport, energy, telecommunications,
     marketing and information, training and education
     facilities, legal, financial and land tenure
     infrastructures for promoting the development of
     small-scale farming sector and for revitalising local
     micro-economies. 

     -   reverse of the downward trend in development
     cooperation funds going to agriculture, in close
     collaboration with farmers' organizations. To encourage and
     enable greater farmer-to-farmer cooperation among
     countries.

     -   encourage greater involvement of farmers' organizations
     including farmers' cooperatives in agricultural and rural
     initiatives and projects, including implementation by
     farmers organizations of certain components e.g.
     group-formation components,

     -   encourage greater development cooperation among farmers
     and farmers' organizations of industrialised and developing
     countries and economies in transition by channelling 0.5
     percent of official development assistance funds through
     farmers' organizations.  

     -   allow the necessary time and resources for agriculture
     to adjust, including the provision of necessary training
     and credit facilities for farmers, searching for
     comparative advantage of resource-poor regions,
     reorientation of programmes to assist them in this
     important period of transition.  

     -   recognise that the practice of food aid must be
     governed by clear rules ; increased transparency in food
     aid must be assured through greater provision of
     information and research in this area.    

81.  We call on agricultural research and extension institutions
to;
     -   establish and consolidate adequate linkage mechanisms
     with farmers and farmers' organizations at local, national,
     regional and international levels, including regular
     consultations, representation of farmers' organizations on
     boards, exchanges of information, joint projects and
     undertakings, in line with methodologies developed by IFAP
     through farmer-researcher consultations. 

82.  We call on civil society institutions and non-governmental
organizations to;

   -   support farmers and farmers' organizations in this
important period of transition.