Published: Thursday September 6, 2012 MYT 11:39:00 AM
Updated: Thursday September 6, 2012 MYT 11:49:33 AM
Stop protectionist measures to ensure adequate food supply, M'sia urges Apec members
By WONG SAI WAN
VLADIVOSTOK (Russia): Malaysia has called on Apec countries to ensure there is enough food for everyone by getting rid of market-distorting measures in agriculture trade.
International Trade and Industry Minister Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamad said Thursday protectionist and export restrictive measures must be stopped to ensure adequate and equitable supply of produce to the entire world.
Speaking to Malaysian journalists covering the 24th Apec Ministerial Meeting, Mustapa said he called on his counterparts in the region to not only develop a specific programme for food security but also come up with measures to monitor the implementation.
"I also told the meeting that increasing investments in the agriculture sector cannot solely be the responsibility of the government.
"Businesses play an equally important role and not just the large companies, but also the small farmers.
"In fact, small-scale farmers can plan an important role in augmenting food production and contribute towards food security in the short and medium term," he added.
On the green growth initiative, he said discussions were still underway in drawing up the Environmental Goods and Services (EGS) list although some member economies were not keen on a long and detailed list.
"Malaysia feels that more need to be done to expand the list so that it is more meaningful and credible."
For the past nine months, Apec officials have been working working towards a common list of EGS. The proposal is for tariffs for the final list of products to be lowered to 5% and below in 2015.