A Memorandum of Understanding between FAO and the Italian Red Cross was signed today, at a virtual signing ceremony, for the implementation of the preventive measures of the UN system in Italy, during phase 2 of the Covid-19 emergency. The CRI will provide the UN system in Italy with technical assistance to strengthen the necessary measures for preventing a possible second wave of the pandemic, by ensuring the safety of the personnel working in the facilities. The ceremony was attended by the Deputy Ministers Marina Sereni and Emanuela Del Re, who thanked FAO and CRI for their work and support during the current crisis.
Deputy Minister Sereni stressed how today's signing "symbolically represents the very close collaboration between Italy and the United Nations system, as well as the strengthening of relations between the two organizations, FAO and the Italian Red Cross, both having been created to serve humanity, by providing protection and assistance to the victims of conflicts and hunger. Organizations whose values are always transformed into concrete acts".
"Italy, since 3 March" - Ms. Sereni added - "concerned for the repercussions of a crisis produced by the spread of the Coronavirus, proposed the creation of a FAO COVID-19 Food Coalition, to respond effectively to the critical issues that could have occurred in certain areas of the world as a result of the pandemic. An unexpected number of States responded positively to this proposal, including the United States and China. Very soon the FAO will convene the first meeting of interested member countries and this is a very important milestone".
Regarding the Food Coalition, the Deputy Minister Del Re, who closed the ceremony, expressed the expectation that the exercise will provide political support, promoting innovation and establishing a space for dialogue. "Only by bringing together all the stakeholders will we be able to help countries get back on track towards the Sustainable Development Policy Goals". Ms. Del Re then reaffirmed her conviction that "effective multilateralism is what we need to achieve our goal of global peace and security. Italy, as the host country of FAO, has always been a strong supporter of multilateralism. Recognising the importance of working together and breaking down prejudice, we have always promoted an integrated approach to development cooperation".
"We have been required to face a real emergency" - Ms. Del Re added - "but the pandemic we are experiencing gives us the opportunity to build up a better cooperation relationship, also in the face of other future adversities. We must be ready for the next challenge. Only by working together will we achieve the goals set out Agenda 2030: our most ambitious goal, which today more than ever reveals its essential role in building our common future".