Jul 192017

Southern African Confederation of Agricultural Unions’ (SACAU) Young Agripreneurs Forum gets the inside track on mechanization and agriculture at AGCO Future Farm, Zambia

AGCO (www.AGCOcorp.com), Your Agriculture Company (NYSE:AGCO), a worldwide manufacturer and distributor of agricultural equipment and solutions, welcomed delegates from 11 countries attending the Southern African Confederation of Agricultural Unions’ (SACAU) Young Agripreneurs Forum to its Future Farm in Zambia for an in-depth three-day programme covering farm mechanization and the business of agriculture.

SACAU is committed to a transformative agenda for agricultural development which is growth-oriented and enterprise-development focused. A key emphasis is working with young farmers and, since 2014, SACAU has run an annual regional young farmers’ forum. The aim of the forums is to create a positive image for agriculture among the next generation and develop role models from within the sector.

While with AGCO, the young agripreneurs spent time in the classroom, workshop and on the farm. Among the topics covered were the role of mechanization in primary production, how technology is changing the face of farming, plus business and entrepreneurship skills.

Delegates were able to get familiar with AGCO’s leading brands of agricultural machinery including Challenger, Fendt, Massey and Valtra, together with the Company’s products and services aimed specifically at supporting African agriculture. A highlight was practical, hands-on experience with the range of Massey Ferguson equipment which includes tractors, harvesting machinery, hay & forage tools, implements and materials handlers.

The AGCO Future farm is based just outside Lusaka. A 150ha working farm, it demonstrates the value of mechanisation, technology systems and best agronomic practices through real-life experience. It is a centre for developing leading-edge agriculture for Africa.

“We were delighted to host the Youth Forum at our AGCO Future Farm,” says Nuradin Osman, AGCO Vice President and General Manager Africa. “This is exactly the kind of educational role the farm was set up for. Now more than ever, it is vital to encourage the new generation of farmers in Africa who are crucial to the future and advancement of agriculture. Mechanisation and technology touch farmers no matter where they are in terms of development. It applies to those who are just starting to mechanize for the first time, to professional agribusiness seeking to raise their game and to entrepreneurs wanting to develop farmer services like mechanized contracting.”

Ishmael Sunga, CEO of SACAU commented: “Young people are setting a new pace in driving agricultural transformation in Africa. The young champions that we work with really are leaders in their communities, challenging the negative public perceptions about farming and showing that agriculture is a dynamic and, most importantly, a profitable career to pursue.”

Distributed by APO on behalf of AGCO Corporation.

Shlobi Maluleke
Manager, Marketing and Communications Africa
Tel: +27 11 230 8606
Cell: +27 82 040 7543
Email: Shlobi.Maluleke@AGCOcorp.com

About AGCO:
AGCO (NYSE: AGCO) is a global leader in the design, manufacture and distribution of agricultural solutions and supports more productive farming through its full line of equipment and related services. AGCO products are sold through five core brands, Challenger®, Fendt®, GSI®, Massey Ferguson® and Valtra®, supported by Fuse® precision technologies and farm optimization services, and are distributed globally through a combination of approximately 3,000 independent dealers and distributors in more than 140 countries. Founded in 1990, AGCO is headquartered in Duluth, GA, USA. In 2016, AGCO had net sales of $7.4 billion. For more information, visit www.AGCOcorp.com. For company news, information and events, please follow us on Twitter: @AGCOCorp. For financial news on Twitter, please follow the hashtag #AGCOIR.

Source:: Southern African Confederation of Agricultural Unions’ (SACAU) Young Agripreneurs Forum gets the inside track on mechanization and agriculture at AGCO Future Farm, Zambia

Jul 192017

Merck Foundation (www.Merck-Foundation.com) continues its strong partnership with African Countries, to build healthcare capacity, improve access to cancer care and advance people lives through science and technology.

During The 19th General Assembly of the Organization of First Ladies of Africa (OAFLA), held at the African Union. Guest of honour, Prof. Frank Stangenberg-Haverkamp, Chairman of the Executive Board of E. Merck KG and Chairman of Board of Trustees of Merck Foundation and Dr. Rasha Kelej, CEO of Merck Foundation, affirmed Merck’s long term partnership with African countries to provide oncology fellowship programs, provide practical training for fertility specialists and to empower infertile women through access to information, health and change of mind-set through “Merck Cancer Access Program” and “Merck More than a Mother” campaign.

Prof. Frank Stangenberg-Haverkamp, Chairman of the Executive Board of E. Merck KG and Chairman of Board of Trustees of Merck Foundation and Dr Rasha Kelej, CEO of Merck Foundation, met the First Ladies.

To learn more about the Merck Foundation programs and their training and fellowship opportunities, please visit their website www.Merck-Foundation.com and www.MerckMoreThanAMother.com.

Distributed by APO on behalf of Merck Foundation.

Your contact:
Sandra Mulluka
+254 722 725 269

About Merck Foundation:
The Merck Foundation (www.Merck-Foundation.com), established in 2017, is a philanthropic organization that aims to improve the health and wellbeing of people and advance their lives through science and technology. Our efforts are primarily focused on improving access to innovative healthcare solutions in underserved communities, building healthcare and scientific research capacity and empowering people in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) with a special focus on women and youth.

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Merck is a leading science and technology company in healthcare, life science and performance materials. Around 50,000 employees work to further develop technologies that improve and enhance life – from biopharmaceutical therapies to treat cancer or multiple sclerosis, cutting-edge systems for scientific research and production, to liquid crystals for smartphones and LCD televisions. In 2016, Merck generated sales of € 15.0 billion in 66 countries.
Founded in 1668, Merck is the world’s oldest pharmaceutical and chemical company. The founding family remains the majority owner of the publicly listed corporate group. Merck, Darmstadt, Germany holds the global rights to the “Merck” name and brand except in the United States and Canada, where the company operates as EMD Serono, MilliporeSigma and EMD Performance Materials.

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Source:: Merck Foundation at African Union Assembly, African First Ladies Summit

Jul 192017

Seychelles and other small island developing countries were active at the United Nations in New York as the UN High-Level Political Forum (HLPF) reviewed the sustainable development goal (SDG) on oceans.

The HLPF oversees the implementation of the 2030 Agenda on sustainable development and the associated 17 SDGs under the auspices of the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC).

SDG 14 is to “conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development”.

The review by the HLPF came just a month after the successful Oceans Conference, also at the UN in New York, where a Seychelles delegation led by Vice-President Vincent Meriton was prominently active.

For the HLPF, Seychelles’ Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Amb Ronny Jumeau, was invited by the President of ECOSOC to be one of two lead discussants at a panel discussion to review SDG 14. This meant responding to presentations by the panelists before the discussion was opened to statements, comments and questions from the floor.

Ambassador Jumeau recalled that the June Ocean Conference had called on donor countries and other stakeholders to increase funding for sustainable ocean-related activities and to implement SDG 14, especially in developing countries. However, the same request had been made to the same stakeholders to do the same for all the other 16 SDGs plus the implementation of the Paris Agreement on climate change.

The scale and complexity of implementing both the 2030 Agenda and the Paris Agreement called for novel ways of thinking, Mr Jumeau said. This was why some developing countries were, “largely unnoticed and even unknown”, engaging with these same stakeholders to come up with innovative methods of financing.

He gave as an example the Seychelles debt swap to turn 30 percent of its 1.4-million-square-kilometre exclusive economic zone (EEZ) into marine protected areas (MPAs).

“We will follow this by issuing blue bonds to fund more sustainable fishing practices to ensure that the remaining 70 percent of the EEZ is sustainably used and managed,” he added.

He also called on the UN system to set up a “strong follow-up and review mechanism” to track the progress of the outcomes of the Ocean Conference and the implementation of SDG 14.

The panel was moderated by Ms Kate Brown, executive director of the Global Island Partnership (GLISPA) which Seychelles President Danny Faure co-chairs alongside the President of Palau, the Prime Minister of Grenada and the Premier of the British Virgin Islands. GLISPA, where the idea for the Seychelles debt swap was born, initiating the country’s move to a blue economy, was also very active at the June Ocean Conference.

The HLPF meets at the UN every year to review a few of the SDGs. Other SDGs reviewed this year covered poverty (SDG 1), hunger and food security (2), health (3), gender equality (5), and resilient infrastructure and inclusive and sustainable industrialisation (14).

Distributed by APO on behalf of Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Seychelles.

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Jul 192017

International Community, GNA discuss strengthening coordination of assistance to Libya to improve living condition of Libyans

The Government of National Accord (GNA) hosted today in Tripoli the first meeting of the Senior Policy Committee (SPC), which brings together high representatives of the Libyan Government, donor countries, the European Union, the United Nations and the World Bank. The SPC serves as a decision-making body on matters related to the coordination of international assistance to Libya.

The meeting, which was chaired by H.E. Mr. Fayyez Al-Serraj, Prime Minister and President of Presidency Council of the GNA and co-chaired by Deputy Head of UNSMIL Maria do Valle Ribeiro, aimed at discussing ways to strengthen international partnership for Libya based on GNA’s key priorities to improve the living conditions of the Libyans.

“This meeting comes at a time when Libya is in need more than ever for coordinated efforts to tackle the challenges facing the stabilisation and the recovery of the country,” PM Fayez Sarraj said in his opening statement. “We have high hopes that this meeting will push forward the coordination process and the launch of cooperation projects that contribute to changing the situation of the Libyan citizen for the better,” he stressed.

The deputy Head of UNSMIL thanked the GNA under the leadership of PM Fayez Sarraj for convening this meeting. “It is an important opportunity for all of us to engage with the Libyans to support Libya, not only on the political side, but also on what is going to make a difference to the lives of children, women and men of Libya,” Maria do Valle Ribeiro said.

The provision of basic services (health, water and sanitation, education, electricity), economic recovery and governance are the key priorities identified by the GNA during the meeting, which required the support of the international community. The GNA also underscored the need for support in the fields of rule law, security sector and migration in addition to supporting the High National Election Committee in conducting elections that Libyans look forward to, as highlighted by PM Sarraj’s opening statement.

Welcoming the GNA’s objective to enhance the living conditions of the people in Libya, participants emphasized the importance of national ownership of coordinating the international assistance, and agreed on a set of outcomes that should guide the future coordination efforts of the international assistance to Libya.

The SPC will continue to convene frequently in Libya to follow up on actions taken and respond to emerging humanitarian and development issues.

Distributed by APO on behalf of United Nations Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL).

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Source:: International Community, GNA discuss strengthening coordination of assistance to Libya to improve living condition of Libyans