The Islamic Organization for Food Security (IOFS) celebrated December 12 as IOFS Day, during which it presented the results of all the work accomplished during the year, and also reported on the main outcomes of the "Year of Africa". The diplomatic corps and experts from more than 20 countries, as well as representatives of the international media, arrived in Astana to participate in the forum.
The distinguished speakers included H.E. Ambassador Jean-Paul Carteron, President and Founder of the Crans Montana Forum, Dr. Masoud Jarallah Al-Marri, the Chairman of the IOFS Executive Board from Qatar, Mr. Askar Shokybayev, Director of the Department of the Near, Middle East and Africa of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Kazakhstan, and the Vice Minister of the Ministry of Agriculture H.E. Mr. Abulkhair Tamabek.
The speech of H.E. Mr. Hissein Brahim Taha, Secretary General of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) was delivered by H.E. Dr. Ahmad Sengendo, OIC Assistant Secretary General for Economic Affairs.
The event began with the welcoming remarks of IOFS General Director H.E. Yerlan Baidaulet, “I would like to invite all Member States and international organizations to become our partners in the implementation of the Africa Food Security Initiative (AFSI), which is the result of the resounding success of the IOFS Year of Africa in 2022. Therefore, IOFS will continue to support Africa's commitment to a sustainable food system through its projects and programmes. I hope that we will succeed, but I firmly believe that our efforts will be more effective with your support.”
The forum participants noted the position of IOFS as a key platform for coordinating all flows of food security programs in the countries of the Islamic world. The young organization, according to the guests of the forum, has great potential and provides a timely response to the growing global challenges of the food crisis in the world.
“Today's issue of ensuring stable food security is becoming more relevant every year, goes beyond local cooperation, becoming a priority area of interstate cooperation. A special role in building effective interstate cooperation is assigned to international organizations. Therefore, the key role of such an organization as IOFS is seen in consolidating the joint efforts of the OIC member countries to carry out coordinated actions, and most importantly, to take sustainable and long-term measures to address food security and combat hunger in our region,” stated the Deputy Minister of Agriculture of the Republic of Kazakhstan, H.E. Mr. Abulkhair Tamabek.
As the Chairman IOFS Executive Board, H.E. Dr. Masoud Jarallah Al-Marri noted, "The objective of the IOFS is providing adequate, healthy and balanced nutrition, and increasing the capacity related to obtaining it at the appropriate cost and the required quality, in order to achieve sustainable development, social stability and a decent life for the Islamic peoples. This comes in light of the current situation and the recurring crises that threatens food security in the countries of the world in general and Islamic countries in particular, which requires more concerted efforts and capacity building to strengthen the food security system to enable it to withstand these challenges."
The IOFS Day concluded with a report on the outcomes of the Year of Africa. Throughout the year, the Organization worked with African governments and other partners to develop the African agricultural sector and implement its strategic programs. IOFS extended its gratitude and recognition to the partners who have worked in various venues for the benefit of African Member States in conjunction with the IOFS.