New government of St Kitts and Nevis ready to usher in new sense of cooperation and good governance, hints at changes to the country’s CBI programme

Basseterre, Nov. 16, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — St Kitts and Nevis welcomed a new government in August and the new administration, led by Dr Terrance Drew, is ready and determined to usher in a new sense of cooperation, good governance, and transparency – starting with steps to improve the country’s long-standing citizenship by investment (CBI) programme.

In his address on Tuesday, 15 November, marking his first 100 days in office, Prime Minister Dr Terrance Drew provided insight into the focus areas for the CBI changes, which he gave to the citizens of St Kitts and Nevis at an event held earlier today in the country’s capital Basseterre.

Since winning the snap election on 5 August, Prime Minister Dr Terrance Drew has been working tirelessly for the overall development of St Kitts and Nevis and has undertaken various initiatives including the formation of a committee to combat corruption.

The new administration has presented plans for the advancement of the twin-island nation, outlining steps that will pave the way to improving the lives of its people. A large part of these plans is funded by the CBI programme which has secured foreign direct investment into the nation for nearly 40 years since it is independence.

“Our government has been relentless in our pursuit to strengthen and improve our Citizenship by Investment programme, for enhanced sustainability within a framework of integrity. We have held productive discussions with local developers and international investors alike,” said Prime Minister Drew.

“There will be much stronger oversight and leadership in the CBI Unit by a new CBI Board and Technical Committee. I will announce the detailed changes at our upcoming press conference, but I want to be absolutely clear, that our evolved CBI programme will be run with the utmost transparency.”

To help progress the economy, Prime Minister Drew highlighted that more oversight would ensure that the people of St Kitts and Nevis would also benefit from the CBI programme as it was intended. Plans are in place to support women in sectors like construction, to provide more support to small businesses, and to review opportunities for the development of the renewable energy sector, the processing of fish, as well as packaging and exports.

With promises to improve health care, provide more affordable housing and access to better education – Prime Minister Drew understands that all this will be underpinned by a stronger economy.

Speaking at the event Prime Minister Drew said that while the nation has been the benchmark of citizenship by investment value proposition, the new administration understands that in order to remain one of the most sought-after economic citizenship programmes in the world, it needs to evolve and forge a new path for itself and the industry as it responds to a changing demographic.

Through ongoing consultations with all stakeholders during the exploratory phase, the new government aims to have regular engagement with local and international stakeholders in the programme to ensure it meets their salient needs.

Prime Minister Drew also emphasised how his government is on a journey to bring clarity to locals and international investors through constant transparency and integrity. “Our ongoing work to strengthen this programme and the system must result in prosperity for all.”

Consultations with stakeholders have led to the development of committees to supervise the process and implement strengthened legislative and administrative structures to prevent “underselling” and ensure that real estate projects funded by the CBI programme are completed.

The government’s plan is to maintain a progressive programme that cements St Kitts and Nevis’ place as a leader in the CBI Industry.

The government is also seeking out reliable and trustworthy developers who are ready to put capital behind creative and strong projects that will enhance St Kitts and Nevis’ CBI offering.

St Kitts and Nevis holds the oldest citizenship by investment programme in the world – established in 1984, the programme currently allows investors to gain second citizenship by donating to a government fund or by investing in real estate.

The government fund channels investment to projects that will uplift the country and has enabled, in part, sectors such as health, education, tourism, business, and agriculture to flourish.

PR St Kitts and Nevis
Government of St. Kitts and Nevis

GlobeNewswire Distribution ID 8698419

New High-Yielding Perennial Rice Sees Sustainability Success Catalyzed by Global Collaboration and Knowledge Sharing Approach

Salina, Kansas, USA, Nov. 16, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Over 70% of the food calories that feed humanity come from annual grain crops, which occupy 60–80% of global croplands. But annual grain dominance may be changing. A study in the journal Nature Sustainability reports that a new high-yielding, long-lived perennial rice with significant environmental, economic, and social sustainability impacts is now being grown in Southeast Asia and parts of Africa.

Researchers in China’s Yunnan Province developed perennial rice in a relatively short two-decade timeframe, achieving comparable yields to annual rice varieties. They were supported with scientific expertise and seed funding from Kansas-based nonprofit The Land Institute and a global network of researchers.

“I congratulate the authors for delivering one of the most important reports in modern agriculture,” says National Geographic Society Explorer Jerry Glover, whose work has focused on developing and using perennial crops. “I believe this report will catalyze a generation of new discoveries by scientists who have not yet been involved in pursuing perennial traits in staple grain crops. This research marks a distinct new line of possibilities for global food production from the nearly 10,000-year single-track reliance on annual grain crops.”

Rice feeds 4 billion people and is the grain most consumed by humans, and is the third largest cereal grain crop after corn and wheat worldwide in metric tons. But annual grain agriculture comes at an ecological and economic cost, compromising ecosystems and forcing ever-higher inputs of chemical fertilizers, pesticides, fossil fuel energy, and labor to maintain yields. The growing perennial grain agriculture movement is shifting this paradigm to address some of the food system’s most pressing challenges.

“Since perennial rice can produce yields over eight consecutive harvests similar to annual rice, this is direct evidence that developing perennial versions of grain crops is feasible,” says Lee DeHaan, Director of Crop Improvement and Lead Scientist of the Kernza® Domestication Program at The Land Institute. “This evidence provides a clear reason to vastly increase research investment in ongoing work to develop perennial versions of crops like wheat and sorghum.”

Senior author Fengyi Hu and Dayun Tao began working with co-author Erik Sacks to develop perennial rice in 1999 in a collaboration between the Yunnan Academy of Agricultural Sciences (YAAS) and the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI). Hearing of the IRRI project, The Land Institute invited Sacks to present his research in 2005. This connection eventually led to Hu and the YAAS team partnering with the perennial grain breeding experts at The Land Institute in 2007 to help jumpstart the development of a promising wide hybrid cross between annual, cultivated rice and a perennial rice cousin from Africa. Inspired by the potential for Hu’s research to develop upland perennial rice, given the catastrophic soil erosion in the hilly regions of Southeast Asia, The Land Institute provided critical funding, technical support, and mentoring and helped expand a network of global peer researchers. The University of Illinois, Yunnan University, and the University of Queensland soon joined the effort.

“The success of Dr. Hu’s group is a wonderful example of how an international network of researchers can help support, advise and advance an amazing and important achievement,” says co-author Tim Crews, The Land Institute’s Chief Scientist and International Program Director. “At The Land Institute, we are intent on working with more research groups worldwide to build on the successes of Hu and others in the perennialization of grain agriculture.”

“Almost yearly since 2009, we’ve held workshops in Yunnan, China, on perennial rice and perennial grain crops, inviting international experts, including African and U.S. rice breeders, sustainable ag researchers, international ag development leaders, and more. This sharing of ideas and building an international network of collaborators has proven invaluable for accelerating progress and achieving success on perennial grains,” says Sacks, professor in the Department of Crop Sciences, part of the College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences at the University of Illinois.

The research shows that perennial rice crops have advantages over annual rice crops:

  • Long-Lived Production: Perennial rice produced grain for eight consecutive harvests over four years from a single planting
  • Comparable High Yields: Average perennial rice yields were equivalent to annual rice, with 6.8 Mg ha-1 harvest-1 of perennial rice versus 6.7 Mg ha-1 harvest-1 of replanted annual rice for each perennial rice regrowth cycle
  • Significant Carbon Sequestration: By switching from annual to perennial rice, soils accumulated almost a ton of organic carbon per hectare per year, 0.81 Mg organic carbon ha-1 yr-1
  • Labor and Inputs Savings: Farmers used nearly 60% less labor and spent almost 50% less on seed, fertilizer, and other inputs for perennial rice than annual rice
  • Improved Farmer Livelihoods: Farmer profits from perennial rice ranged from 17% to 161% above annual rice

“Interest in developing and testing perennial grain cultivars has grown exponentially over the last ten years,” says Rachel Stroer, President of The Land Institute. “Besides perennial rice, our work on wide hybrid crosses of annual wheat and sorghum with their perennial relatives show promise. With intensified investment in perennial grain agriculture research from global funders and partners, we’re confident that these grains and more will reach high yields with robust ecological and social benefits and move onto the landscape in the coming decades.”


The Land Institute co-leads the global movement for perennial, diverse, regenerative grain agriculture at a scale that matches the enormity of the intertwined climate, water, and food security crises. An independent 501c3 nonprofit founded in 1976, the organization seeks to reconcile the human economy with nature’s economy, starting with food. Its transdisciplinary team of scientists and global partners are developing new perennial grain crops, like Kernza®, and diverse cropping systems that function within nature’s limits and researching the social transformation required for a just, perennial human future.


Tammy Kimbler
The Land Institute

GlobeNewswire Distribution ID 8697794

Vinamilk investit dans de nouvelles méga-laiteries pour accélérer la capacité d’approvisionnement pour l’exportation

HO CHI MINH VILLE, Vietnam, 16 novembre 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Vinamilk, la principale entreprise laitière du Vietnam, a réalisé des progrès importants en veillant à ce que sa capacité de production puisse répondre à la demande intérieure et extérieure au cours des deux ou trois prochaines années grâce à deux projets de construction essentiels.

The perspective of the Moc Chau Dairy Complex Project in Moc Chau Highland

Le premier projet verra la construction de la plus grande usine laitière de la province de Hung Yen et le second concerne le complexe laitier de Moc Chau dans le nord-ouest, qui va de pair avec les usines existantes et le système de fermes de Vinamilk. Une fois achevés, ces deux projets augmenteront la capacité de production de Vinamilk de 20 % en vue des prévisions établies et renforceront la position de l’entreprise sur le marché.

L’usine laitière de Hung Yen reliera les fermes laitières, les entrepôts et les systèmes de distribution existants de Vinamilk afin de créer un écosystème durable. Les avantages économiques associés sont conséquents. L’usine laitière d’une capacité totale de 400 millions de litres par an produira une variété de produits laitiers pour augmenter l’approvisionnement au Nord du Vietnam et pour l’exportation vers les régions de l’ASEAN (Association des Nations de l’Asie du Sud-Est), la Chine, le Japon et la Corée du Sud, entre autres.The capacity of the UK's production lines in the Vietnam Powdered Milk Factory reaches nearly 23,000 products every hour

Le complexe laitier Moc Chau, d’un montant de 130 millions de dollars, sera un écosystème agricole moderne et fermé composé de fermes laitières de haute technologie et d’usines de transformation qui serviront de facteur d’écotourisme supplémentaire. Ce projet, qui sera mis en œuvre en deux phases, produira à terme jusqu’à 1 000 tonnes par jour pour répondre adéquatement à la demande mondiale.

Les installations de production de Vinamilk au Vietnam, dont 13 usines et 14 fermes, ont suivi les normes internationales, contribuant à la valeur de marque de l’entreprise et à sa croissance rapide au cours de la décennie. Au cours des 15 dernières années, 615 millions de dollars ont été investis dans ses usines.

La société s’est également diversifiée dans le segment du lait en poudre avec deux usines au Vietnam. L’une d’entre elles, la Vietnam Powdered Milk Factory, a une capacité de production de 54 000 tonnes par an et répond aux besoins de près d’un million d’enfants chaque année avec des gammes de produits bien connues telles que Dielac, RiDielac et Optimum Gold.The Hung Yen Dairy Factory will be officially started construction in 2023

Plus important encore, la variété des offres laitières est produite à l’aide de systèmes hautement automatisés alimentés par une technologie de pointe pour verrouiller les nutriments et le goût naturel, surtout vu dans Optimum Gold de Vinamilk. Cette préparation pour nourrissons contient des HMO, qui représentent le troisième composant le plus abondant dans le lait maternel. Les HMO ainsi que 26 vitamines, minéraux et DHA aident à prévenir l’adhésion des pathogènes, à favoriser une digestion saine et à améliorer le système immunitaire.

« Les produits Vinamilk sont exportés dans plus de 57 pays et territoires à l’échelle mondiale. Avec l’augmentation de notre capacité de production, nous sommes mieux placés pour répondre aux différents besoins du marché mondial », a déclaré Vo Trung Hieu, directeur du développement commercial international de Vinamilk. « Notre engagement envers nos clients reste fort, avec la recherche et le développement de nouvelles formules de produits alignés avec les besoins du marché, y compris notre conception et l’emballage qui sont fabriqués à partir de matériaux recyclés. »

À propos de Vinamilk

Fondée en 1976, Vinamilk est la première entreprise laitière du Vietnam. Elle figure parmi les 40 plus grandes entreprises laitières au monde en termes de chiffre d’affaires et parmi les 10 marques de produits laitiers ayant le plus de valeur au monde, représentant 2,8 milliards de dollars américains. Vinamilk compte désormais 46 unités subordonnées au Vietnam et au Laos, au Cambodge, aux Philippines, aux États-Unis et en Nouvelle-Zélande.

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AirShow China 2022 : le drone tactique de LoongUAV attire l’attention

ZHUHAI, Chine, 16 novembre 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Le 13 novembre 2022, le 14e Salon aéronautique chinois s’est terminé en beauté à Zhuhai. De nombreux UAV intéressants ont été exposés dans le cadre de ce salon aéronautique, tels que l’UAV d’inspection à grande échelle et d’attaque WJ-700 « Falcon » de la troisième académie des sciences et de l’industrie aérospatiale, l’UAV de moyenne et basse altitude Wing Loong-1E d’AVIC, le drone tactique de surveillance de précision multirotor Loong 4 de LoongUAV, le drone de surveillance de moyenne portée Rainbow-4 de la société de sciences et technologies aérospatiales de Chine, etc.

De nos jours, un volume croissant d’équipements sans pilote est mis en service. Parmi ces équipements figurent divers UAV de combat qui sont fréquemment utilisés dans les guerres. Loong 1 est un drone de ciblage qui peut fournir un positionnement précis de cibles à longue portée.Loong 2 est un drone de reconnaissance qui peut être déployé rapidement et secrètement pour identifier les conditions du champ de bataille. Le Loong 5 est un drone d’attaque qui peut bombarder des cibles dans de vastes zones. Le Loong 4 est un UAV multirotor de taille moyenne. Il est doté d’une capacité de charge élevée et d’une longue autonomie de vol, ce qui lui permet de répondre à divers besoins en combat et lui a valu l’attention de tous les publics lors du salon aéronautique.

Loong 4 peut transporter quatre mortiers de calibre 82 mm et six mortiers de 60 mm, verrouiller la position de la cible grâce à la nacelle de suivi et réaliser la mission de bombardement depuis les airs. Il prend en charge les modes de prises de vue uniques ou multiples, et sa précision de largage est inférieure ou égale à 2 m, ce qui est adapté aux frappes précises en temps de guerre. En même temps, lorsqu’il transporte une triple charge utile, il peut également fournir des données de position de haute précision au mètre près pour le calibrage de l’artillerie cible.

Pour sa première apparition, le LoongUAV a non seulement reçu des éloges unanimes de professionnels de tous les horizons lors du salon, mais a également reçu des commandes et des demandes de la Russie, de l’Ukraine, des Émirats arabes unis, de l’Arabie saoudite, du Brésil, de l’Afrique du Sud, d’Arménie, du Yémen, d’Ouzbékistan, de Zambie, de Jordanie et d’autres pays, pour un total de commande atteignant une valeur de plus de 500 millions de dollars américains.

LoongUAV  conçoit, met au point, fabrique et commercialise des drones tactiques efficaces, et propose une large gamme de services OEM/ODM. LoongUAV s’engage à construire des drones à haute performance, légers, pénétrants, invisibles, modularisés, à haute capacité et de longue durée. Capables d’exécuter des tâches de combat intelligentes, précises et diversifiées dans un environnement de champ de bataille à haut risque.

Pour plus d’informations, veuillez consulter ou contactez

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Vinamilk Invests in New “Mega” Dairy Factories to Accelerate Export Supply Capacity

HO CHI MINH CITY, Vietnam, Nov. 16, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Vinamilk, Vietnam’s leading dairy company, has made significant progress in ensuring its production capacity can meet the domestic and export demand in the next two to three years with two vital construction projects.

The perspective of the Moc Chau Dairy Complex Project in Moc Chau Highland

The first will see the building of the largest dairy plant in Hung Yen province, and the second being the Moc Chau dairy complex in the northwest going along with the existing factories and farms system of Vinamilk. When finished, these two projects will increase the 20% production capacity of Vinamilk in preparation for the foreseeable future and strengthen the company’s position in the market.

The Hung Yen dairy plant will connect existing Vinamilk dairy farms, warehouses, and distribution systems to create a sustainable ecosystem and deliver substantial economic benefits. The dairy plant with a total capacity of 400 million liters per year will produce a variety of dairy products to increase supply to Northern Vietnam and for export to ASEAN regions, China, Japan, and South Korea amongst others. The capacity of the UK's production lines in the Vietnam Powdered Milk Factory reaches nearly 23,000 products every hour

The USD 130 million Moc Chau dairy complex, on the other hand, will be a modern, closed agricultural ecosystem consisting of high-tech dairy farms and processing factories that will serve as an additional ecotourism factor. This project which will be implemented in two phases will ultimately produce up to 1,000 tonnes per day to adequately meet global demands.

Vinamilk’s production facilities in Vietnam, including 13 factories and 14 farms, have been following international standards, contributing to its brand value and rapid growth over the decade. Over the last 15 years, a total of USD 615 million have been invested in its factories.

The company also diversified into the powdered milk segment with two factories in Vietnam. One of them – the Vietnam Powdered Milk Factory – has a production capacity of 54,000 tonnes per year, meeting the needs of nearly one million children every year with well-known product ranges such as Dielac, RiDielac, and Optimum Gold. The Hung Yen Dairy Factory will be officially started construction in 2023

More importantly, the variety of dairy offerings is produced using highly automated systems powered by leading technology to lock in the nutrients and natural taste, especially seen in Vinamilk’s Optimum Gold. This baby infant formula contains HMO, the third most abundant component found in breast milk. HMO alongside 26 vitamins, minerals, and DHA help prevent pathogen adhesion, support healthy digestion, and enhance the immune system.

“Vinamilk products are exported to over 57 countries and territories globally. With our production capacity ramped up, we are better positioned to serve the various needs of the global market,” shared Vo Trung Hieu, International Business Director of Vinamilk. “Our commitment to our customers remains strong, with the research and development of new product formulas aligned with market needs, including our design and packaging that are made from recycled materials.”

About Vinamilk

Founded in 1976, Vinamilk is the leading dairy company in Vietnam which is listed among the top 40 largest dairy companies in the world by revenue and the top 10 of the world’s most valuable dairy brands with a value of USD 2.8 billion. Vinamilk has now expanded its scale to 46 subordinate units in Vietnam and Laos, Cambodia, the Philippines, the USA, and New Zealand.

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“I thank the Government for Making Sure that no Child is Left Behind” Ms. Shaheen Nilofer

Shaheen Nilofer has just concluded her tenure as the UNICEF representative in Eritrea that started in June 2019. Upon the conclusion of her mission to Eritrea, Eritrea Profile had the chance to conduct an interview. Excerpts follow…


Please tell us your reflections about the country.

I have many reflections to share primarily about Eritrea’s story. I have been here for more than three years, and it is a firsthand exposure and understanding of the context where we operate. Context is everything and the stories must be told in the right manner because stories sway people and influence the policies made, the politics and the way the world order is being shaped. So, the narrative that is important to tell the rest of the world is about how Eritrea is making strides on some of the key critical indicators of children that UNICF is concerned with and is working in close partnership.

One of the most important things that I have seen recently is Eritrea’s ability to engage externally. We saw Eritrea’s engagement in high level political forum in July 2022 in New York. That is a global platform where Eritrea presents its national reports. That is about telling the story where Eritrea is. Although the mandate is about SDG 3 and 13, it also reflected other SDGs and how Eritrea is measuring up to on delivering its commitment.

Very recently on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly, we have seen Eritrea’s participation in the transformative education summit, and it was the first time Eritrea presented its national commitment on transformative education for children. I am saying all this because it’s important to tell that Eritrea doesn’t shy away from telling its stories when it’s ready and believes it has something substantive to contribute to the global landscape on SDGs for children. And I think that the time is ready now.

Eritrea has always been on track in terms of the SDG3 and 13, but it didn’t necessarily think about doing the talk without first doing the walk in terms of what it believes in and what it is committed to. Speaking of the milestones, the role of UNICEF is to respond to the context and to the needs on the ground as determined by Eritrea’s national priorities. We respond to the national priorities.

In the past five successive country programs, we have seen the under-five mortalities among children reduced by 74%. We have seen a reduction of about 68% in infant mortality rate. Neonatal mortality has also decreased by 49%. This might seem mere statistics, but what is most important is given the constraint and the challenge the country has faced, not only during its struggle for independence but also after independence, education, health and other essential social services have been on the forefront of its national priority. Most of the developed countries in the world are struggling with the education sector’s budget, which is still below 9-10 %.

Despite all of its challenges, Eritrea commits about 14.9% of its domestic budget to education and it aims to increase it by 20 % by 2025. This is a phenomenal record not only in terms of financing but in prioritizing that every child has access to quality learning. This has resulted in an increase in primary school enrollment. Of course, this doesn’t mean there are no areas of concern that we need to work on.

Another key milestone is Eritrea’s rate of immunization. In addition, data is a determining factor. We have very good administrative data from the Ministry of Health, but we don’t necessarily have recent and segregated data that would enable us to tell the story with confidence and evidence. And it’s very important for us to engage at the global level, that is SDG and more of future goals. This is all doable not only because it’s small but because there are very committed and hardworking functionaries at different levels of the administration.

One of the key reasons for the success of the implementation of the program in Eritrea is the strong community institutions which subsidize a large part of the implementation by the zoba level functionaries. To ensure there is a program on inclusive children-based assistance, the community institutions are the ones who monitor and talk to the parents and the rest of the community about the importance of education. So, to a large extent, the credit goes to the very strong community networks and institutions that I have seen in Eritrea.

Over 98% of the routine under 5 immunizations is very good. We need to bridge the gap and ensure no child is left behind. Although much has been achieved, there is a lot to be done. Eritrea is also making progress in nutrition for children under five. An example is the recent accelerated high impact nutrition strategy that seeks a multi sector intervention. We are holding talks about reviving the DMK factory in Dekemhare. That is one of the ways you ensure that Eritrea is more than capable to solve its problems using domestic solutions. The Ministry of Health has declared an ODF (Open Defecation Free) Eritrea by December 2022, and we are almost there.

Another Eritrea’s achievement that I am very proud of is the barefoot doctors. There are currently about 121 barefoot doctors that have been selected through a rigorous process across the length and breadth of the country. The barefoot doctors are bridging the gaps in delivering health services specifically in rural areas. We also need to work towards ensuring the rural water supply at the community level. Although we are close to 75-80%, we are undertaking an inventory of the WASH resources across the country to see how many of these resources of water supply systems are functional and what needs to be done to ensure that communities are empowered to undertake the simple repair and maintenance at their level without necessarily depending on the government for everything. There is an element of building capacity and providing them with simple tools and equipment that enable them to take charge of these resources once provided by the government.

All concerned ministries work together to get the desired outcome of ensuring comfortable learning environment for children. The MLSW is on the last leg of finalizing the national policy on social protection, which is one of the most important key milestones. This shows Eritrea’s own credibility and long reputation of ensuring that equity and social justice are essential to everything that the country undertakes, including the development vision and strategy. So, within the broad framework of equity and social justice, the national social protection policy has come into effect, and we assure that this would enable the country to make sure that it delivers the necessary services for those in need.

During the times of Covid-19 [when the country was in partial lockdown], none of the essential services were disrupted and that’s a commendable achievement for the government. Though schools were closed for a while, other means, such as the broadcasting of lessons on TV and radio, were applied.

What do you think can other countries in this region learn from Eritrea in terms of success on SDGs, women and children?

One of the first things that come to mind is Eritrea’s remarkable performance on immunization coverage. As I mentioned, it is now close to 98%. That’s a remarkable achievement. It’s important to understand how change happened and the reasons for the success. And if you are able to pick up the lessons from the examples then we could have similar results in other places. So, it’s important for us to realize that despite the limitations and the challenges, there are success stories to be told.

Another favorite one is the realization that it’s not left to the government in Asmara to deliver results for children but the engagement and commitment that stretches down to the kebabi (sub zone level). Everyone is engaged, so there is a sense of accountability and responsibility at every level in giving back to the community. That may have been derived from the principles of equity and social justice which is essential to Eritrea’s mantra to development. That’s the story Eritrea could offer the rest of the world.

You have travelled to different parts of Eritrea. Please, tell us your impressions.

I am very passionate about traveling and take any opportunity to travel outside of Asmara to see things first hand and to experience actual results on the ground. Based on my own personal exposure to the cultural context of the country, I have seen how the institutions, functionaries and the school establishment and basic health centers work.

I went on a field trip at the beginning of 2020, just before the outbreak of the [Covid-19] pandemic. It was an immunization campaign at a basic health center in Foro: I saw women with young infants and kids on their own come for immunization. They knew this was a day for immunization and they were there on their own. That was very impressive and a demonstration of the acceptance of the services provided.

In many places, you have to push communities to influence them to demand services. But in this context what was admirable is that service was given without any disruption in spite of the panic the pandemic caused the world. And this also shows that you don’t have to tell people how important immunization and nutrition supplements are. That is one part of the story where the communities understand and value the services. What is impressive isn’t just the fact that things are available for free, but there are people lined up for that service. This also shows the commitment of the people despite the distances they have to travel. What also inspired me was the story from the barefoot doctors.

Some of the 21 female barefoot doctors I saw are mothers of three or four who dropped out of secondary school. They took rigorous training at Barentu Hospital to be barefoot doctors, paramedics and interns. The testimonies I heard from them, the pride with which they recounted their stories and the respect they earned from their community are amazing. For someone who has been a homemaker with low self-esteem to be seen as a messiah of the community who delivers health services in the remotest of the areas, carrying that paramedic bag and travelling long distances to be able to reach out to the families, children, and women is just a remarkable story.

There are so many stories to tell. I am impressed by the cultural diversity of the country and the seamless harmony in the country. There is so much love and beautiful relationships you see when you visit these areas just from the point of view of cultural diversity. What I brought as a takeaway from my trip is making sure that our structure in UNICEF also reflects that culture. We shouldn’t be all the very privileged ones from Asmara. We should have representation in our structure from all ethnic groups. So there is so much to learn from the country in terms of emphasis on equality, inclusion and diversity.

What has life been like in Eritrea, and what memories are you taking with you?

I don’t have the words to express it. It’s one of the most beautiful countries that I have seen, not in terms of the climate but the people. Common people in the streets of Asmara, Keren, Massawa, Barentu or elsewhere are very welcoming. I just exude so much of warmth, positivity and hospitality. You don’t feel a stranger in the country. People are very welcoming, and you don’t feel rattled. I can walk on the streets of Asmara no matter how late it is and no one bothers me. They always welcome and nod their head in good wish. Whenever I had an opportunity, I have taken a lot of photographs. I have seen through my eyes so many good gestures, and I have them captured in my camera. I have captured those images of the people that tell so many stories that no matter what, it’s important to connect people to people. That gives the utmost happiness; so, I am carrying a lot of these memories with me and I am sure Eritrea will be on my mind forever.

What are your parting words?

Children first!! Whether Eritrea is building its economy, culture, politics or anything, we need to keep children at the center of the design of any development program. I would like to thank the government of the State of Eritrea and all the ministries I have worked with for their support and cooperation and, more importantly, for prioritizing children. They make sure that no child is left behind, everywhere. I am sure that every child is looked after and is a priority for the government.


Source: Ministry of Information Eritrea

Speech Delivered By H.E. Mr. Tesfai Ghebreselassie Sebhatu, Minister of Land, Water and Environment of Eritrea UNFCCC- COP 27

Honorable Chairperson

Excellencies Heads of Country Delegates

Distinguished UNFCCC Secretariat

Dear COP 27 Participants,

Ladies and Gentlemen

On behalf of the Eritrean delegation, I would like to join predecessor speakers in thanking the people and government of the Arab Republic of Egypt for the generous hospitality accorded to us since our arrival here in this beautiful city of Sharm Al Sheikh, and congratulate them for the wonderful job they have done to host UNFCCC-COP 27 and for assuming the presidency of the same.

Honorable Chairperson,

COP 27 is taking place thirty years after the Rio Earth Summit that culminated in the three significant conventions of UNFCCC, UNCCD and UNCBD with a commonly shared objective of protecting our planet Earth and the integrity of its delicate ecosystem against damages wrought by human activities.

To us, the said conventions represent humanity’s solemn vow to reconcile with its conscience and nature and through sincere partnership to deal with all forms of past and ongoing injustices and excesses.

Notwithstanding the optimism-inspiring said objective and many promises made in subsequent conferences of the partiesas well as the ever-growing concerns and demands of billions of people, it is distressing and dismal, to say the least, that actions taken so far have not been commensurate with the gravity of the existential threat the world is facing due to global warming and overall environmental degradation.

IPCC recent assessment reports are worrying. They indicate cumulative emission reduction pledges and other mitigation measures fall far short to hold average global temperature increase at 1.5 degree Ctarget for which, the Paris Agreement has been much acclaimed.

As climate tipping points are crossed every year, raging cyclones, torrential tropical rains and melting glaciers and polar ice that loosen deadly floods, droughts that destroy crops, sea level rise, wildfires that devastate forests, and biodiversity losses have already become common occurrences. And the attendant human sufferings and damages are getting ever unbearably colossal and catastrophic. Yet as repeatedly referred, science has shown us not only how the world got into the present climate crisis, but also the way out.

Mr. Chairperson,

Eritrea’s emission has ever been very negligible and because of our geographic position and lack of adaptive capacitywe have been among the countries most impacted by climate change.

Cognizant that the fight against global warming and environmental degradation is about doing everything what it takes to save our irreplaceable planet Earth and life that we know, in all conscience, my delegation strongly believes that every party have a role to play, however differentiated, to win the fight.

In this regard, I would like to bring to the attention of this august gathering, that in concurrence with what can be expected of my country Eritrea, we have been focusing on nature-based activities that enhance resilience and adaptive capacity of our communities through protecting, conserving and restoring terrestrial and marine natural ecosystems, protecting biodiversity, soil and water conservation and controlling land degradation.

In an effort to solve energy poverty and reduce dependence on biomass and fossil fuel, we have just started to implement modest solar energy projects and we saw that it works. But still a lot remains to be done and to be achieved In response to the outstanding call on parties to come up with more ambitious climate action plan, we will soon declare our revised NDC. Bilateral and multilateral financial capacity building will be key to overcome impasses for its expedited and enhanced implementation.

Mr. Chairperson,

At present the world is facing many challenges. However, global warming is the most overwhelming with far reaching consequences for now and posterity. In the face of this reality backsliding from climate commitments and unfulfilled promises should not be permissible.

Therefore, the Eritrean delegation joins with the voices of developing country parties, particularly African and LDCs that strongly call for:

  1. immediate and drastic emission reduction of GHGs to be made, particularly by the G 20 parties;
  1. doubling the provision of adaptation fund by 2025 compared to what was 2019;
  1. adoption of finance and operational modalities and structures to address loss and damage inflicted by climate change;
  2. enhanced concessional and grant financial support for just energy transition investments for renewable energy and low carbon programmes and projects at scale for energy poor countries to enhance energy access.

In conclusion I recall that history is testimony that people when left on their devices often tend to evade common obligation in order to promote their narrow interest. This and the absence of accountability mechanism has been a major problem that undermine trust and confidence in the international system and the whole process of climate negotiation.

The historical relevance of the UNFCCC-COP 27 in Sharm El Sheik will depend on it being able to rebuild trust and revive lost hopes and by taking us together from pledges and promises to implementation.

I thank you all for your attention.


Source: Ministry of Information Eritrea