International Conference on Asian Food Security (ICAFS) 2014
Towards Asia 2025: Policy and Technology Imperatives
21–22 August 2014
Grand Copthorne Waterfront Hotel, Singapore
Asia faces serious challenges to its food security. Changing demographics and consumption patterns, productivity decline in agriculture, degradation of natural resource base, food price volatility, rising input costs, as well as transformation of supply chains and the “supermarket phenomenon”, are but a few of these. Add to this the various anticipated short- to medium-term trends, and it becomes clear that focused efforts towards mitigating the challenges are urgently needed.
The complexity of food security, dynamism of supply chains and the space offered by Asia’s institutional changes are creating both challenges and opportunities for the region. In light of prevailing and foreseeable trends that have direct consequences for the region’s food security, the second International Conference on Asian Food Security (ICAFS) organised by the RSIS Centre for Non-Traditional Security (NTS) Studies focused strongly on Asia’s response towards the thinking horizon of 2025.
ICAFS brought together experts, stakeholders and representatives from farmers to manufacturers, food companies, international organisations, NGOs, government policymakers to the academe, who play significant roles in the food landscape. The event also featured prominent speakers from major multilateral institutions, private sectors and key research institutes such as ADB, IFPRI, FAO, IRRI and Syngenta among others.
Each session offered valuable insights and facilitated the discourse on various food security issues as well as provided actionable policy recommendations to address the future of food in the region.
ICAFS 2014 Programme
Dr Mohamad Maliki Bin Osman
Minister of State
Ministry of National Development, Singapore
Session 1: Asia 2025 – Trends and Challenges to Food Security
This session focused on the trends and challenges that affect Asian food security. These include changes in demography and consumption patterns, performance decline of agriculture, degradation of natural resource base for food production and climate change. This session was aimed at setting the context on possible policy and other interventions for both food and nutrition needs.
Amb. Barry Desker
Dean, S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies;
Nanyang Technological University, Singapore
Ending Hunger and Undernutrition in Asia by 2025 What Will It Take?
Dr Shenggen Fan
Director-General, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) Washington DC
Food Security in Asia The Role of the Private Sector
Mr Davor Pisk
Chief Operating Officer, Syngenta
Financing Agricultural Innovation and Technology – Farmers’ Perspective Towards Improved Security in Asia by 2025
Mr Edwin Y. Paraluman
Farmer and Coordinator of the ASEAN Farmers Regional Network (ASFARNET)
Food Security Challenges Faced by Developing Asian Countries and Responses towards 2025 The Case of Indonesia
Dr Achmad Suryana
Former Director-General, Indonesian Agency for Food Security, Ministry of Agriculture; Research Professor in Agricultural Economics and Policy
Indonesian Agency for Agricultural Research and Development
Session 2: Supply and Demand – Improving Productivity Growth and Supply Chains
Session 2 was the ‘bread and butter’ session that focused on food supply and demand issues, declining productivity/yield growth, and rapid urbanisation. This session aimed to provide an assessment of technological and policy innovations required as well as current efforts to modernise supply chains to cope with changes in food demand patterns in Asia.
Dr Siang Hee Tan
Executive Director, CropLife Asia
The Post-2015 Agenda on Hunger and Malnutrition
Dr Jomo Kwame Sundaram
Assistant Director-General for Economic and Social Development, Department of FAO
Food Supply and Demand in Asia Challenges and Opportunities for Policy and Technology Interventions
Dr Mark Rosegrant
Division Director Environment and Production Technology
International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI)
Modernizing Food Supply Chains as an Integral Necessity to Assure Food Security
Dr Rolando Dy
Executive Director, University of Asia & the Pacific Center for Food and Agribusiness
Achieving Food Security in a Growing World of Scarcity The Role of Scientific Innovations
Prof. Martin Kropff
Rector Magnificus, Wageningen University
Session 3: Market Integration, Trade and Economic Access to Food
This session examined the role of market integration and trade in improving physical and economic access to food. It also discussed the ASEAN Economic Community 2015, other regional trade agreements, and their effect on keeping prices stable and affordable.
Prof. Mely Caballero-Anthony
Associate Professor, S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS);
Head, RSIS Centre for Non-Traditional Security (NTS) Studies, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore; and Former Director, External Relations, ASEAN Secretariat
ASEAN, AEC and Food Security
Dr Ponciano Intal Jr.
Senior Researcher, Economic Research Institute for ASEAN and East Asia (ERIA)
Impact of Trade Facilitation, Logistics and Services Liberalisation Reforms on the Food Supply Chain
Dr Ruth Banomyong
Associate Professor, Faculty of Commerce & Accountancy, Thammasat University, Thailand
China’s Role in the Future Food Security Situation of Asia A Threat or an Ally
Dr Jikun Huang
Founder and Director of the Chinese Centre for Agricultural Policy for China
India’s Food Security Bill A Retrospect
Prof. S. Chandrasekhar
Associate Professor, Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research
Session 4: Financing and Investing in Agricultural Innovation and Technology
Session 4 looked at the importance of innovation and technology in increasing agricultural productivity and food processing. It also highlighted the importance of infrastructure, R&D, technology development and transfer, and the necessary policy environment for investments to bear fruit.
Prof. Paul Teng
Senior Fellow and Advisor (Food Security), RSIS Centre for NTS Studies; and Principal Officer, National Institute of Education (NIE), Nanyang Technological University, Singapore
Agriculture and Rice Research International Public Goods with Unmatched Return to ODA
Dr Bruce Tolentino
Deputy Director General, International Rice Research Institute (IRRI)
Private Equity, Agriculture, and Food Security
Mr Victor Lean
Managing Partner, Caudex Asia
Risk Management and Financing for Food Security An Insurance Industry Perspective
Mr Ivo Menzinger
Head Asia-Pacific Global Partnerships, Swiss Reinsurance
Access to Agricultural Financing – The Experience of ASA in Bangladesh
Mr Md Fayzer Rahman
Executive Vice President, Association for Social Advancement (ASA), Bangladesh
Session 5: Charting an Integrative Approach for Asia towards 2025
Session 5 aggregated all sessions and attempted to chart the direction in moving towards 2025 and beyond. Speakers representing national governments, food producers and civil society articulated the various perspectives and proposed directions in which the region must move in order to achieve food security by 2025.
Dr Shenggen Fan
Director-General, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), Washington DC
The Role of R&D in Asia’s Food Security Rice Security through Policy, Science and PPPs
Dr Robert Zeigler
Director General, International Rice Research Institute (IRRI)
Going Beyond Food Security: Putting Nutrition Security in the Equation
Mr Kobus De Klerk
Regional President, SAFI ASPAC DuPont Nutrition & Health
ReducingPreventing Food Insecurity from Regional Calamities & Disasters
Ms Puspasari Indra
Asia Regional Emergency Food Security and Livelihood Coordinator, Oxfam
Concluding Keynote Address: Way Forward – Regional Cooperation for Food Security
The concluding session will chart next steps for the region. The keynote speaker, Mr Bindu Lohani, Vice President for Knowledge Management and Sustainable Development, Asian Development Bank, will also provide a regional bank’s perspective on the need for integrated approaches in tackling food security.
Dr Bindu Lohani
Vice President for Knowledge Management and Sustainable Development, Asian Development Bank