GLOBAL ALLIANCE

International experts publish an open letter in support of the Global Alliance Against Hunger and Poverty

"As Laureates of the World Food Prize who have committed decades of our careers to addressing hunger, we urge G20 leaders to contribute to the development of an updated global plan, underpinned by evidence and sustained investments, aimed at reorienting the world towards the goal of eradicating hunger.”

04/10/2024 12:16 PM - Modified 3 months ago

With this appeal, some of the world's foremost experts in food security have published an open letter supporting the Brazilian initiative proposed by the Global Alliance Against Hunger and Poverty. The group urges the G20 to accept the proposal put forth by President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva for a plan to address the global food crisis.

The document, addressed to the leaders of the world's most important economies, “highlights President Lula's focus on addressing hunger and poverty during his presidency of the G20,” as well as the achievements of his first term, which saw poverty halved due to social welfare reforms, hunger-fighting programs, and economic growth.

Wellington Dias, Brasil's Minister of Development and Social Assistance, Family, and Fight Against Hunger, underscored the pivotal role of the federal government's reinstated social programs, which enabled the country to lift 13 million people out of hunger in just over a year.  Moreover, he underscored Brasil's acknowledged proficiency in formulating and implementing public policies aimed at eradicating hunger and poverty.  

“We are greatly pleased to acknowledge the endorsement of our Brazilian proposal by this renowned group of food security experts to form a Global Alliance Against Hunger and Poverty, during the G20 presidency. This endorsement shows that we are on the right track, and that the initiatives undertaken during the Lula and Dilma administrations, which successfully removed Brasil from the Hunger Map, now serve as global standards, recognized even within the scientific community," remarked the minister.

Among the 27 laureates of the World Food Prize who endorsed the urgent appeal to the G20 are distinguished individuals such as Sir David Nabarro, the co-leader of the United Nations  Global Crisis Response Group on Food, Energy and Finance; Professor Gebisa Ejeta, a recent recipient of the National Medal of Science from the United States; and Dr. Cynthia  Rosenzweig, a climate scientist at NASA.

To view the complete list of signing laureates, you can access it here.

Brazil without Hunger actions will help 331 million people. Photo: Agência Brasil

Wellington Dias, Brasil's Minister of Development and Social Assistance, Family, and Fight Against Hunger, underscored the pivotal role of the federal government's reinstated social programs, which enabled the country to lift 13 million people out of hunger in just over a year.  Moreover, he underscored Brasil's acknowledged proficiency in formulating and implementing public policies aimed at eradicating hunger and poverty.

Face-to-face meeting of the Global Alliance against Hunger and Poverty, held in Brasilia, with delegates from the G20 countries. Photo: Audiovisual/G20
Face-to-face meeting of the Global Alliance against Hunger and Poverty, held in Brasilia, with delegates from the G20 countries. Photo: Audiovisual/G20

President Lula, who won the World Food Prize in 2011, promptly made hunger and poverty key priorities when the country assumed the G20 presidency in December 2023. The Task Force for the Global Alliance Against Hunger and Poverty convened for the second time in Brasília at the end of March 2024.

Amidst escalating levels of hunger and climate vulnerability, compounded by United Nations warnings of imminent and extreme hunger in conflict-ridden regions such as Gaza, Haiti, and Sudan, experts caution that “in the 21st century, the primary drivers enabling the persistence and escalation of hunger and malnutrition are the absence of political will and leadership.” 

The text states, “We urge all leaders to emulate his (Lula's) example and champion bold measures to combat the global food crisis, thereby advancing our collective pursuit of Sustainable Development Goal (ODS) 2, the shared global aspiration to eradicate hunger in all its manifestations.”

The current global landscape illustrates that 735 million individuals are contending with hunger, while an additional 250 million are facing acute food insecurity. Experts point out that women and children are disproportionately affected. They propose an inclusive strategy incorporating the following key measures: 

● Emphasize the prioritization of saving lives by allocating full funding to United Nations  humanitarian appeals for food and nutritional assistance.
● Direct attention toward bolstering resilience by allocating investments to support small-scale farmers and frontline responders to the food crisis.
● Ensure future sustainability by advocating for reforms in the multilateral financial system, including addressing unsustainable debt burdens in low-income countries.
● Foster cooperation among United Nations agencies, development banks, financial institutions, donors, civil society, and farmer organizations to strengthen response efforts.

The Global Alliance Against Hunger and Poverty Task Force is slated to reconvene in May 2024 in Teresina, the capital of the state of Piauí, preceding the ministerial meeting scheduled for July 2024 in Rio de Janeiro. There is an expectation that the Alliance will be formally established during the Summit of Heads of State and Government in November 2024, also to be held in Rio de Janeiro, the capital fluminense.

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