EU to Offer US$ 1.6 Billion to Fund Poor Countries’ Agriculture

Agriculture in Brazil During the recent G8 summit held in Hokkaido, Japan, European Union (EU) officials announced that the EU plans to make available 1 billion euros (US$ 1.6 billion) to support agriculture in developing nations. The objective behind the initiative is to increase global food production rapidly, stated the president of the European Commission, José Manuel Durão Barroso.

"The European Union is ready to provide new stimulus to the agriculture of developing countries," stated Barroso, recalling that the bloc had already turned 550 million euros to investment in the sector in 2008. "Additional measures are necessary," he said.

The Europeans fear that the food places at risk the millennium development goals. They are also concerned with the oil price hikes, as the barrel has exceeded US$ 140. According to Durão Barroso, the EU plans to discuss with the leaders of the G8 short-, medium- and long-term measures for the fuel price hikes.

"We must find solutions to structural problems like the great dependence on fossil fuels," pondered Barroso.

The EU should also try to persuade the United States, France, Germany, Great Britain, Italy, Japan and Russia to take on the engagement of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 50% between 1990 and 2050. The target had been defined at the bloc summit in 2007, in Heilligendamm, Germany, with the support of Japan and Canada.

"Developed nations may do more and engage themselves in reductions ranging from 60% to 80% by 2050," pointed out Barroso. But he stated that it is not enough to think of the future. "We must establish long-term objectives for our offspring, but we must establish medium-term targets for us."

Brazilian President, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, participated in the event with the leaders of the remaining countries of the G5 – China, India, Mexico and South Africa  -  plus Australia, Indonesia and the Korean Republic.

ABr

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