Forum Launched to Boost Climate-resilient Indian Agriculture
The National Institution for Transforming India (NITI Aayog), the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), and other stakeholders launched the Investment Forum for Advancing Climate Resilient Agrifood Systems in India in New Delhi in January 2024. The two-day event brought together over 200 senior representatives from the government, financial institutions, UN agencies, and other key stakeholders.
The forum facilitated discussions across six key areas: climate-resilient agriculture approaches, digital solutions, financing, value chains, production practices, and social inclusion.
National Priorities and Policy Platforms
The forum aimed to identify national priorities and policy platforms for financing climate-resilient agrifood systems. This requires larger investments from global climate finance, domestic budgets, and the private sector channeled through various mechanisms like green bonds and blended finance.
Regional Collaboration Opportunities
The event highlighted opportunities for regional collaboration on climate-smart food systems initiatives to maximize resource consolidation and route findings to support large-scale climate advocacy campaigns.
Need for Climate Resilience
In his keynote address, NITI Aayog Member Ramesh Chand emphasized the need to build awareness of agriculture’s 13% contribution to India’s greenhouse gas emissions. He highlighted the potential for agriculture to aid carbon sequestration through tree planting. Chand also called for new economic analysis metrics beyond financial prices to evaluate agriculture’s economic and natural resource impacts and contributions to climate change.
Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare Secretary Manoj Ahuja stressed the importance of considering small and marginal farmers’ perspectives, as they constitute 85% of India’s farming population. He also noted the localized climate change impacts on farming and called for tailored responses. Ahuja further highlighted the need to increase farmers’ incentives through investment structures.
UN Resident Coordinator Shombi Sharp reiterated the critical need to urgently scale up investments in climate-resilient agriculture to ensure future food security. He expressed the UN’s commitment to supporting climate initiatives in India. FAO Representative Takayuki Hagiwara applauded India’s strong leadership in building climate resilience and stressed the importance of partnerships and investments achieved through de-risking strategies.
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