United Nations

CEDAW/C/1994/3/Add.4


Committee on the elimination of all forms of discrimination against women

 Distr. GENERAL
22 October 1993
ORIGINAL: ENGLISH




COMMITTEE ON THE ELIMINATION

  OF DISCRIMINATION AGAINST WOMEN

Thirteenth session

New York, 17 January-4 February 1994

Item 4 of the provisional agenda*



     *    CEDAW/C/1994/1.

                                       


      IMPLEMENTATION OF ARTICLE 21 OF THE CONVENTION ON THE

     ELIMINATION OF ALL FORMS OF DISCRIMINATION AGAINST WOMEN



  Reports provided by specialized agencies of the United Nations

 on the implementation of the Convention in areas falling within

                  the scope of their activities



                  Note by the Secretary-General



                             Addendum





     FOOD AND AGRICULTURE ORGANIZATION OF THE UNITED NATIONS



                        Introductory note



     On behalf of the Committee, the Secretariat invited the Food

and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), on

22 June 1993, to submit to the Committee by 1 September 1993, a

report on information provided by States to FAO on the

implementation of article 14 and related articles of the

Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination

against Women, which would supplement the information contained

in the reports of those States parties to the Convention which

will be considered at the thirteenth session.  These are the

latest reports of Barbados, Colombia, Ecuador, Guatemala, Guyana,

Japan, Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, Madagascar, Netherlands, New

Zealand, Norway, Senegal and Zambia.



     Other information sought by the Committee refers to the

activities, programmes and policy decisions undertaken by FAO to

promote the implementation of article 14 and related articles of

the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination

against Women.



     The report annexed hereto has been submitted in compliance

with the Committee's request.





                              Annex



    REPORT SUBMITTED BY THE FOOD AND AGRICULTURE ORGANIZATION OF

     THE UNITED NATIONS TO THE COMMITTEE ON THE ELIMINATION OF

       DISCRIMINATION AGAINST WOMEN AT ITS THIRTEENTH SESSION*





                                           [Original:  English]



     Within the framework of the implementation of its Plan of

Action for the Integration of Women in Development, FAO has

reviewed substantive programme actions recommended by previous

Conferences.  The following are some examples of the findings:



     -  The increasing recognition world wide of the critical

        role of rural women in food production and food security,

        in natural resources and environmental management and in

        household management and family welfare;



     -  The persistent discrimination against rural women as

        regards access to productive resources, social services

        and their limited political and legal power;



     -  The current lack of effort and resources to redress the

        inequalities.



     Considering the above on one side, and the weak policy

initiatives on the other, FAO has adopted a two-track approach. 

First by recognizing and documenting women's roles and giving

women means and opportunities to have greater access to

resources.  Second, over the long term, to promote a greater

access to political power and encourage legislative process in

order to permanently improve women's access to and control over

productive resources.  FAO is providing this assistance through

training efforts at various levels and through policy advice

directed to Member Governments, which focus on achieving changes

in the attitude of development specialists and policy makers,

enhancing their abilities to deal with the issues and concerns of

rural women, and equipping them to develop gender-responsive

policies and legislation.



     As regards the close relationship between women, population

factors and environment, FAO has carried out a series of

activities ranging from research on environmental problems in

agriculture and livestock production to technical assistance in

strengthening human resources and institutional development for

socially sensitive and responsive policy and strategy-making,

planning and legislation.



     Innovative efforts were developed in programmes to enhance

women's roles and resources.  They concern in particular four

critical areas:  (1) financial resources, (2) technical training

and extension services, (3) environment, natural resources

management and sustainable development and (4) nutrition and food

security.  Regarding area no. 1, actions include the

systematization of loan procedures, the establishing of revolving

funds, the means to reduce transaction costs, in-kind revolving

funds and group savings and increasing incomes and savings

through grain savings.  As regards area no. 2, efforts are

directed towards better targeting of women professionals and

women farmers, reorientation of agricultural curricula and

extension, the publishing of studies on agriculture extension and

farm women in the 1980s, reorientation of home economics for

rural development in developing countries, to cite a few. 

Activities concerning women, sustainable development, natural

resources management and environment are coordinated by the

Office of the Special Advisor to the Director General for

Environment and Sustainable Development.  While a large number of

FAO activities are oriented towards enhancing the role of women

in sustainable development, specific efforts are focused on

researching and raising awareness of the links between rural

women, poverty, population and the environment.  For the last

item, nutrition and food security, FAO continues to strive to

enhance women's roles as primary nutrition managers at the

household level, as income providers and as food producers and to

increase their access to all necessary resources.  The World

Declaration and Plan of Action for Nutrition was adopted by the

International Conference on Nutrition in December 1992.  It

places particular emphasis on eliminating all forms of

discrimination and on promoting gender equality.  To that end,

several mechanisms have been set up such as:  understanding

women's roles in the community; affording women and girls

equitable access to economic opportunities, education and

training; and adopting legal measures and social practices that

guarantee women's equal participation in the development process

by ensuring their access and rights to utilize productive

resources, markets, credits, property and other family resources.



     FAO's Plan of Action on People's Participation in Rural

Development recognizes the vital role which can be played by

women's organizations including grassroots groups, professional

associations, non-governmental organizations and networks by

forming the core for political advocacy.  FAO's work centres on

strengthening these groups through various means including

training.



     In conclusion, FAO continues to make significant progress in

the implementation of the Plan of Action for the Integration of

Women in Development.  It has developed innovative and successful

interventions oriented towards increasing rural women's access to

resources, especially to financial resources, extension and

training.  The World Conference on Nutrition provided a forum and

a

plan of action to further diffuse the positive experience and

lessons learned regarding women, nutrition and food security.





     *    This report has been reproduced in the form in which it

was received.


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