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World Bank President Proposes “New Deal for a Global Food Policy”

Robert_b_zoelliRobert B. Zoellick, World Bank President, called, on 2 April 2008, for a “New Deal for a Global Food Policy” to combat world hunger and malnutrition, in the face of skyrocketing food and oil prices, through a combination of emergency aid and long-term efforts to boost agricultural productivity in developing countries. Zoellick said the new deal is needed to combat the “forgotten” Millennium Development Goal of overcoming malnutrition, a problem that causes 3.5 million deaths a year in children under 5 and has long-lasting impacts on health and achievement. According to Zoellick, this new deal “should focus not only on hunger and nutrition, access to food and its supply, but also the interconnections with energy, yields, climate change, investment, the marginalization of women and others, and economic resiliency and growth.”

Zoellick also mentioned the importance of successful agricultural negotiations within the World Trade Organization Doha round and striking a global deal on climate change. He noted that “If negotiators of 150 economies cannot manage the political tradeoffs of the Doha Round to reap the clear benefits, it does not auger well for bringing developed and developing countries together on a new accord for climate change.”

Links to additional information:

World Bank press release, 2 April 2008 | Zoellick's Speech “A Challenge of Economic Statecraft”