During his first official mission to Europe, Manuel Otero is meeting with representatives of the Italo-Latin American Institute (IILA), FAO, the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), the Italian Agency for Development Cooperation and the United Nations World Food Program (WFP).
Rome, 10 September 2018 (IICA). Manuel Otero, the Director General of the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA), began an official visit to Italy today, where he signed an agreement with the Italo-Latin American Institute and held meetings with the Director General of FAO, José Graziano da Silva and Gilbert F. Houngbo, President of the International Fund for Agricultural Development (FIDA), which is the UN agency involved in financing and promoting innovative rural development projects.
The IILA agreement was signed by Otero and the Secretary General of the Organization, Donato Di Santo, in the presence of Argentina’s Ambassador to Italy, Tomás Ferrari. It will facilitate the implementation of joint social cohesion and production programs and projects to benefit rural communities and drive competitive and sustainable agricultural activity.
IICA’s Director General is also scheduled to meet with the Acting Director of the Italian Agency for Development Cooperation, Leonardo Carmerati and the Executive Director of the United Nations World Food Program (WFP), David Beasley, as well as attend a General Audience with His Holiness Pope Francis at the Prefecture of the Papal Household in the Holy See.
Otero remarked that, “The collaboration agreement between IICA and the IILA, represented by its Secretary General, Donato Di Santo, as well as the meeting with the head of the Italian Agency for Development Cooperation, are major opportunities to introduce successful Italian cooperation experiences to agriculture in Latin America and the Caribbean. IICA continues to play an extremely important role as a bridge for the benefit of agricultural activity and rural development in the Americas.
IILA, an international organization with its headquarters in Rome, promotes stronger ties between Italy and Latin America in the spheres of culture, science, the economy, technology, socio-related matters and development cooperation.
Speaking of his meeting with the head of FAO, IICA’s Director General revealed that, “We discussed the progress that both institutions have made in developing linkages and in finding synergies and we agreed to continue to collaborate, particularly in the Caribbean, Colombia and in Argentina”.
Otero’s arrival in Rome follows a working visit to France, where he met with high-level authorities from the Ministry of Agriculture and Food, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and executives from the Danone Group, a French multinational agrifood corporation with an extensive global presence.
Prior to that, Otero was in Madrid, where he began his first official European mission since assuming office as Director General of IICA. There he met with the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, Luis Planas; the State Secretary for International Cooperation and for Ibero-America and the Caribbean, Juan Pablo de Laiglesia; and with representatives from academia, international organizations and private sector organizations.
Soraya Villarroya, Permanent Office for Europe