Cuba associates itself with the statement delivered by the distinguished delegation of the People's Republic of China on behalf of the Group of Friends of Global Development Initiative.
The current multidimensional crisis has one of its most serious manifestations in the increase of food insecurity, a consequence of the unjust world economic order and the persistence of unsustainable and irrational patterns of capitalist production and consumption.
This challenging situation is not new. According to FAO, before the pandemic, the state of the global food supply was very critical and around 2 billion people experienced moderate or severe food insecurity. Recent statistics forewarn that, as a result of COVID-19, between 83 and 132 million more people will end up in the same situation.
It is unethical in a world that already produces enough food to feed everyone that foodstuffs are wasted in an unsustainable manner and their distribution is not equitable.
Against this backdrop, the countries of the South are the most vulnerable, since, in addition to their own development challenges, they cope with an unpayable foreign debt, the structural deformation in their economies, the effects of climate change and the imposition of unilateral coercive measures.
Cuba has suffered for more than 60 years the impact of the economic, commercial and financial blockade imposed by the U.S. government, which has been opportunistically and deliberately stiffened in times of pandemic. The effects of this criminal policy impact significantly on the lives of our people, due to the shortages caused in such strategic sectors as agriculture, food production, transportation, health, among others.
Despite these stumbling blocks, Cuba is determined to endure creatively and our government is making huge efforts to ensure the human right to food and the achievement of SDG 2.
We continue to make headway in the implementation of the Food Sovereignty and Nutrition Education Plan, which aims to reduce food imports, attach greater importance to national production, achieve nutrition education and develop groundbreaking mechanisms of social communication in relation to healthy eating.
Achieving global food security and developing sustainable food systems constitute a priority. The transformation of the current system of economic relations, which perpetuates dependence, neoliberalism and extreme poverty, cannot be deferred.
There is an urgent need to increase international cooperation mechanisms, capacity building, access to more advantageous sources of funding and the transfer of technologies to transform production chains and achieve a more equitable distribution of foodstuffs.
It is time for industrialized countries to fulfill their historical debt to the Third World and their Official Development Assistance commitments.
As long as these necessary actions are postponed, the aspiration to live in a world without hunger and poverty will remain a pipe dream. Changing the current food insecurity situation will be the only assurance of realizing the right of peoples to development and peace.
Thank you very much.