Cuba, EU strengthen cooperation in sustainable agriculture

Featured Cuba, EU strengthen cooperation in sustainable agriculture

Cuba and the European Union (EU) reinforce this Tuesday cooperation ties in the fight against climate change, for more sustainable agriculture and energy, according to a EU diplomat.

In an interview with Prensa Latina, the ambassador and head of the EU delegation in Cuba, Alberto Navarro, also considered in that sense the Strategic Support Program for Sustainable Food Security in Cuba (SAS), whose implementation began recently and it will be lasting six years.

This project, which has financial support from the EU of nearly 20 million euros, aims to sustainably increase the production of quality food to meet local demand, specifically through the application of innovative, environmental and resilient approaches.

Responsible for this food project are the Ministry of Agriculture (MINAG) and the EU, and also counts on the monetary support of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).

The ministries of the Food Industry, Public Health, Internal Trade, Economy and Planning, Higher Education, Science, Technology and Environment and Foreign Trade and Foreign Investment are being involved, as well.

The program is very important for the EU's cooperation with Cuba, which is being significantly strengthened, and in which we have tripled the funds in the last two years, Navarro explained.

But beyond the importance of the volume of funds, he pointed out, is the trust we have with the partners of the Cuban government, in this case the MINAG.

There can be no sovereignty without food security and here the EU wants to put its sand grain and contribute to this project, which follows others such as Basal (Environmental Bases for Local Food Sustainability), and the Agro-chains, he referred.

We want to contribute, he said, to Cuba having greater food sovereignty and being less dependent on imports, and at the same time developing healthy and quality products, which is what we all want.

The EU also implements on Cuba a project with almost similar financing, of about 20 million euros, related to the use of renewable energy.

In this strategic sector we want to help to have better efficiency, more rational use of energy resources, less fossil fuels and that Cuba take advantage of renewable energy, Navarro underscored.

We definitely work through cooperation in the areas of a new green economy, the fight against climate change, more sustainable agriculture and energy that help the United Nations 2030 agenda.

According to the Ambassador, the relations between the EU and Cuba, run at a good timing, 'I would say honeymoon after 20 years of drifting apart from 1996 to 2006,' he sustained.

Since December 2016, with the signing of the Agreement on Political Dialogue and Cooperation (ADPC), relations have only strengthened and improved on the basis of respect and trust, he said.

And there are the results of two years of the entry into force of the ADPC: two joint councils, in Brussels and Havana, a multitude of political and sectoral dialogues, multiplied by three financial resources and more and more confidence. I think we are working very well Europeans and Cubans, he considered.

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