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PROMOTING SUSTAINABLE AGRICULTURE AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT

The FAO"s point of departure as task manager is the realization that conceptualizing this chapter benefits from the den Bosch Conference on Agriculture and Environment, which was held in April 1991. At this stage, FAO is not planning on holding any more general meetings. Informal workshops are envisaged, but not yet confirmed, on agrochemicals with IFPRI in March 1995 and on incorporating environmental issues into agricultural policy, hopefully with UNEP, in May 1995.

A representative from the Women"s Food and Agriculture Organization, Kathy Lawrence, said that the CGIAR system has put together a consultative process to enable farmers to have input into the work of the CSD. They met with FAO and provided them with comments on the first draft of the report, specifically that the tone was too positive and lacked the urgency as befits the food and agriculture situation in the world today. The major reason for the slow adoption of SARD principles has been omitted from the FAO report. SARD principles have not been adopted because the export- driven model of development is still the dominant model. The potential impact of GATT in developed and developing countries must be addressed.

INTERNATIONAL WORKSHOP ON DECENTRALIZED RURAL ELECTRIFICATION: This workshop was held in Paris from 20-22 September 1994. Participants were technicians and managers who are directly involved in the implementation of decentralized electrification programmes of significant size. The overall aim was to enable participants to compare their experiences and clarify the main implementation options of these programmes and identify guidelines for conducting other larger-scale operations. The workshop facilitated an exchange between Francophone and Anglophone teams from nine countries/regions regarding their experience in the field. The projects discussed during the workshop are the outcome of ten years" experience and a consensus developed around the idea that enough information is now available to allow these actions to be extended and replicated in other regions and countries. Nevertheless, the adaptation of financial mechanisms on a case-by-case basis is a key to large- scale penetration of decentralized rural electrification. A follow-up meeting will be held in 1995.

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