ICBA, IOFS partner to step up food security efforts in OIC member countries
The International Center for Biosaline Agriculture (ICBA) and the Islamic Organization for Food Security (IOFS) - a specialized institution of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) - have agreed to work together to support food security efforts in OIC member countries.
ICBA and IOFS recently inked a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to this effect at ICBA’s headquarters in Dubai, the UAE.
The agreement was signed by Dr. Tarifa Alzaabi, Acting Director General of ICBA, and H.E. Yerlan A. Baidaulet, Director General of IOFS, in the presence of Mr. Rauan Zhumabek, Consul General of Kazakhstan in Dubai.
Under the agreement, the two organizations will support ongoing efforts to address challenges facing food, water and income security, among other things.
More specifically, the collaboration will focus on water and land management technologies; remote sensing and modeling for climate change adaptation; crop productivity and diversification; aquaculture; and bioenergy.
Commenting on the partnership, Dr. Tarifa Alzaabi said: “Since ICBA’s formation in 1999, the center has extensively worked with numerous international organizations, government agencies, farmers, researchers and other stakeholders around the world. We are delighted to form this partnership with IOFS to share our technical know-how and scientific expertise in support of sustainable livelihoods and food security in OIC member countries. It will help us to cater to the needs of more stakeholders and increase the impact of our work.”
For his part, H.E. Yerlan A. Baidaulet said: “I had the honor to witness the establishment and maturation of ICBA and thanks to the huge support of H.E. Dr. Ahmad Mohammad Ali, former President of the IsDB Group, and related IsDB colleagues, the organization has overcome a difficult period. Since then, enormous and brilliant work has been done by the team led by Dr. Ismahane Elouafi, ex-Director General of ICBA. The organization was able to achieve a vast deliverable that allowed to elaborate, develop and export new drought-tolerant varieties and technologies upon saline land management. I am of the robust opinion that our bilateral partnership will create a great synergetic effect in the mission of achieving the zero-hunger goal.”
The agreement also envisages knowledge exchange, including the sharing of research studies on a range of topics, to improve agricultural productivity and sustainability.
Moreover, the cooperation aims to promote a value-chain approach for agricultural development, which will boost agri-business activity and market access. The two organizations will also collaborate on promoting the development of agri-business incubators and stimulating the creation of competitive agri-business enterprises.
During the ceremony, ICBA and IOFS also signed a modus operandi document, which stipulates a timeline for the main activities.