Building EU-Mongolia Relations on Agriculture and Rural Development22 July 2013
MONGOLIA - The European Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, Dacian Ciolos will visit Mongolia this week to discuss prospects for increasing cooperation with the Mongolian authorities in the fields of sustainable agriculture, food security and rural development.
"We have a strong interest in enhancing our bilateral relations in the area of agriculture and in discussing ways to address challenges such as ensuring food security while preserving natural resources and fighting soil degradation. We are also ready to share our experience in developing rural areas while preserving communities, protecting rural landscapes and traditional ways of living," said Commissioner Ciolos.
In terms of agriculture, Mongolia faces challenges related to self-sufficiency, environmental degradation and desertification. Rapid urbanisation and the growing mining sector have also brought important changes in the Mongolian nomadic culture.
Building on the experience that the EU and EU member states have with addressing similar issues, the visit will focus on how to best answer these challenges. For example, the EU rural development policy has a successful track record in supporting farmers and the rural economy via agri-environmental measures, sustainable use of forestry land, encouragement of rural tourism activities, conservation and upgrading of rural heritage.
In Ulaan Baatar, Mr Ciolos will have meetings with the Minister of Industry and Agriculture, Khaltmaa Battulga, the Minister of Environment and Green Development, Sanjaasuren Oyun, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Luvsanvandan Bold and the Minister of Culture, Sport and Tourism, Tsedevdamba Oyungerel.
The visit comes after the signature of the EU-Mongolia Partnership and Cooperation agreement in April 2013 and takes place within the framework of the preparations for the EU-Mongolia Joint Committee planned for September 2013.
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