Published On: Thu, Jan 9th, 2014
Published in Category: International

Abu Dhabi invites Pakistan to exhibit at game changing agriculture forum

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ABU DHABI: The Global Forum for Innovations in Agriculture (GFIA), the world’s largest showcase of game-changing innovations in sustainable agriculture, is inviting Pakistani agricultural companies to exhibit at the event, to be held in Abu Dhabi from February 3-5 2014.

The pioneering event, held under the Patronage of H.H. Sheikh Mansour Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs of the UAE under the theme ‘Driving Innovation for an Agricultural Revolution,’ is bringing together leading innovators, investors, policymakers, food producers, retailers, scientists, NGOs and agricultural organisations for the first time in one location.

Pakistan is to have a large country pavilion at GFIA and is looking to showcase the expertise of Pakistani agricultural companies, ranging from small innovative ideas to larger agribusiness solutions. With exports to the UAE averaging over $2.1 billion over the last 3 years (2010-2013), the UAE and the Middle East offers attractive export opportunities for Pakistani business.

A delegation from the Trade Development Authority of Pakistan (TDAP) travelled to Abu Dhabi last month to confirm their support for the event, which includes subsidising Pakistani companies that wish to exhibit. Over 500 commercial organisations and over 100 research institutes in Pakistan have been identified as being within the target profile for the country pavilion.

“The Global Forum for Innovations in Agriculture will present the world’s largest collection of sustainable agriculture inventions. It is a major opportunity for food producers and retailers, agricultural investors and agricultural technology suppliers, and the ideal opportunity for anyone who wants to reach out to these stakeholders. It is perhaps the single most important meeting of the decade for this sector,” said Chris Fountain, Managing Director of GFIA organisers Turret Media.

“As key players in the regional agricultural sector and leading experts in technologies ranging from water management to dry land agriculture, we strongly encourage Pakistani companies to participate in GFIA. I look forward to conducting a pre-event seminar in Lahore on January 13th in collaboration with our partners at TDAP to provide all interested parties with further information on the opportunities that exist with GFIA for Pakistani companies,” continued Mr Fountain.

GFIA brings together all the leading players in solution-oriented agriculture in a single central location. It seeks to highlight the sustainable agriculture initiatives and innovations being planned and deployed across the world to increase food security and safeguard future sources of home-grown food, particularly in regions characterized by water shortages and unfertile land.

More than 60 countries will be represented at the event, with many exhibiting and others contributing presentations and speakers to the conference sessions.

The event will be held in strategic partnership with the Abu Dhabi Food Control Authority. Mohamed Jalal Al Rayssi, the Abu Dhabi Food Control Authority’s Director of Communication and Community Service, commented on the relevance of the event for the UAE and the region: “The leadership of the UAE has placed the full weight of its resources and political will behind taking a leading role in the movement to design and implement sustainable agricultural initiatives in arid and semi-arid regions.”

“Our goal is to unite the Middle East and South Asia behind sustainable solutions for food security and to harness new technologies for our desert landscape. GFIA is key to facilitating knowledge transfer and to demonstrating the investment opportunities available to regional and international stakeholders,” added Al Rayssi.

The multi-faceted event will feature an exhibition and conference, comprising keynote sessions, panel discussions, an African Ministerial debate and 150 presentations; an incubator zone which will provide a low-cost space for UAE and international entrepreneurs to showcase their ideas and prototypes; an Innovation Zone curated by the University of Arizona, where working models of some of the most inspiring innovations in agriculture today will be featured; technical tours to a range of sustainable agriculture projects in the UAE; a Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) Farmer Focus, where a dedicated program will educate GCC farmers on the benefits of sustainable agriculture; and an NGO Zone, where NGOs, development agencies and charitable foundations can meet and share ideas.
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