Head of the Secretariat discusses implementation of articles 17 &18 with FAO Director General

On February 12, Dr Vera da Costa e Silva, Head of Secretariat, WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, met Dr José Graziano da Silva, Director-General of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). Dr da Costa e Silva informed the Director-General of FAO about the decisions adopted by the Conference of the Parties at its session held in Moscow in October 2014 and asked for FAO’s support to the implementation of Policy options and recommendations on economically sustainable alternatives to tobacco growing (in relation to articles 17 and 18 of the WHO FCTC).

The Head of the Convention Secretariat suggested that FAO consider looking at tobacco growing in terms of global food security agenda and proactively advocate for alternatives to tobacco growing in countries that have requested assistance in this area as part of joint needs assessment exercise for implementation of the Convention. Director-General asked how FAO could support the countries that request assistance to the Secretariat. The Head of the Convention Secretariat and the Director-General agreed to prepare a draft Memorandum of Understanding on cooperation between FAO and the Convention Secretariat, emphasizing the issue of the sustainable alternatives to tobacco growing, especially involving family farmers.