By Kang Hyun-kyung
Korea and 11 Latin American countries will launch an initiative to cooperate in the agriculture sector to pass on the former's knowhow on successful small farms to the latter.
On Tuesday, Cho Gyoung-rae, an official from Rural Development Administration, said that the forthcoming Korea-Latin America Food and Agriculture Cooperation Initiative (KoLFACI) aims to help small farmers in Latin America acquire the necessary skills to improve their living standards and earn more.
"In May, the two sides are going to sign a memorandum of mutual interest to team up in the agriculture sector and then hold the first assembly at the Ramada Hotel in Seoul," Cho said during a presentation at the Bolivian Embassy in Seoul.
The Korean government official said delegations from Korea and 11 Latin American countries will exchange their ideas and seek ways to strengthen cooperation in rural development during the first get-together.
The 11 nations are Bolivia, Guatemala, the Dominican Republic, Peru, El Salvador, Costa Rica, Panama, Paraguay, Honduras, Nicaragua and Uruguay.
The announcement came at a gathering to celebrate International Earth Day at the Bolivian Embassy.
During a speech at the event, Bolivian Ambassador Guadalupe Palomeque de Taboada stressed the need for coordinated international efforts to achieve sustainable development.
"We are now living in an era where economic indices play a major role in the ranking and positioning of countries," the ambassador said.
"I think that we need alternative indices to gauge nations' profiles to live up to our commitment to preserve nature. Efforts to preserve or conserve nature, improve human rights conditions and achieve sustainable development can be some of the new measures," she added.
The envoy said that striking a balance between human beings and "Mother Nature" and improving food security are some of the visions that the Bolivian government is striving to achieve in the future.
In a speech, Costa Rican Ambassador Manuel Lopez Trigo said that his country wants to team up with Korea, and with this cooperation Korea can pass on its expertise and knowhow on agriculture to Costa Rica to achieve sustainable development and progress in rural areas.