The 17th Congress of the Tunisian Union of Agriculture and Fisheries begins its work in Tabarka – The work of the 17th ordinary electoral congress of the Tunisian Union of Agriculture and Fisheries (UTAP) started on Monday in Tabarka, under the theme “Food sovereignty in the face of climate change”, in the presence of 430 participants.
Speaking at the opening ceremony, UTAP President Noureddine Ben Ayed stressed that this meeting is of great importance in view of the organization’s history and its choices in terms of reforms and development of the sector in a critical context.
For Ben Ayed, the congress is an opportunity to work towards enabling the agricultural and fisheries sector to regain its true position, taking into account the evolutions and the climatic challenges and their repercussions on the sector.
He added that the new UTAP board, which will be elected, will work in cooperation with the Ministry of Agriculture, Hydraulic Resources and Fisheries and other stakeholders in the sector within the framework of a new union vision that breaks with political agendas.
The objective, he explained, is to put in place a new national agricultural strategy based on the rationalisation of water use and the use of non-conventional resources, including the desalination of sea water, above-ground agricultural production and the updating of the agricultural map in order to favour its adequacy to the current agricultural situation.
For his part, the Minister of Agriculture, Hydraulic Resources and Fisheries, Abdelmonem Belati, emphasized the need to prepare to fight against climate change and to meet the food needs of Tunisia.
He also mentioned the importance of working to ensure good governance of the country’s resources and to exploit them in a scientific manner, while affirming that Tunisia is able to guarantee its food and water sovereignty.
Belati pledged to announce measures, described as “important”, during the celebration of the National Day of Agriculture on May 12.
For his part, the deputy of the constituency of Bousalem-Balta Bou-Aouane (governorate of Jendouba), Salah Ferchichi said, in a message addressed to the delegates on behalf of the President of the Assembly of People’s Representatives (ARP), that the parliament has adopted, for the first time, a committee on agriculture in charge of food security and sovereignty, based on the governance and good operation of the sector and the development of its mechanisms.
The representative of the National Union of Tunisian Women, Salha Daoud, and the vice-president of UTICA, Hamadi Kooli, affirmed that the two organisations count on UTAP to face the new challenges while expressing their availability to support the efforts deployed by the agricultural organisation in order to guarantee the stability of the country and to provide for its needs.
The voting operations to elect the president of the congress and the members of the relevant commissions will start after the opening speeches.
The 17th Congress of the Tunisian Union of Agriculture and Fisheries begins its work in Tabarka