Excellencies, Colleagues,

I would like to thank the President of the General Assembly, HE Abdulla Shahid, for convening us here today to sustain our focus on the global food crisis. We also align ourselves with the statement delivered by China on behalf of the Group of Friends of the Global Development Initiative.

As a global donor, an elected member of the Security Council, and COP28 President, the UAE is committed to address and prevent further hunger through collective action.  I would like to highlight four areas where I believe we can jointly make both an immediate and long-term difference.

First, we welcome efforts to facilitate the export and production of food and agricultural products that have been impacted by the conflict in Ukraine. We are hopeful that recent progress will help to alleviate the conflict’s impact on food security. While this is a critical near-term solution, we must also continue to highlight the significance of sustained progress in this regard. 

Second, as was the case during the start of the pandemic, we need our international financial institutions to enhance support for social safety nets. Accordingly, the international public finance approach should be generous and designed to prevent any hindrance to the development of lower-income countries and communities, which do not bear responsibility for the food crisis.

Third, the current food crisis needs to serve as a prompt for greater investment in food and water in fragile countries. Whether we want to call it climate adaptation or conflict prevention, there are proven interventions – like drought-resistant crops, enhanced irrigation, and community management boards – that can be taken to scale and mitigate current and future food crises. We also encourage the G7 to look to its “Just Energy Transition Partnership” as a model for scaled food and water investment in fragile countries over the next 18 months.

Fourth, we must continue to increase investment in food systems innovation. Last year, the UAE and the United States launched the “Agriculture Innovation Mission for Climate” with over 200 government and non-government partners and raised $4 billion for addressing climate change and global hunger through new technology and approaches. We now aim to raise an additional $4 billion by COP27, and we invite new partners to join us in ensuring that food systems generate increased supply and demonstrate greater resilience.

Thank you again.