CIHEAM Secretary General, Mr Plácido PLAZA, has welcomed Mr José Manuel Albares Bueno, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Kingdom of Spain to the French Republic and Ms María José Hernández Mendoza, Counsellor of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food to the Embassy of Spain in France and Delegate of Spain to CIHEAM.
The visit was held in Paris at CIHEAM headquarters and marked the opportunity to affirm Spain’s support of the intergovernmental organization, and reiterate the authorities’ support in priority fields of action, in particular gender inclusion and empowerment of women in food production systems and rural areas. Ambassador Albares stated the importance of this question for his country and for the Minister of Agriculture, Mr Luis Planas Puchades, who has made the role of women in agriculture one of his priorities.
Cooperation and dialogue in the Mediterranean
The ambassador congratulated CIHEAM on their commitment in this matter and in the inclusion of young people – recalling that CIHEAM has acted as a Mediterranean Erasmus in the field of animal and plant health for almost 60 years. He went on to assure the Secretary General of his full support in essential issues such as Mediterranean cooperation and dialogue and the European Neighbourhood Policy.
Another matter discussed was the work currently under way for CIHEAM’s accession to the delegated cooperation mechanism of the European Union. In order to operate for the EU several challenges must be met in relation to good governance, in particular in terms of transparency, accountability, responsibility and ethics. CIHEAM’s efforts in this sense have been commended by the ambassador.
An online exchange was also held with the Director of the Institute of CIHEAM Zaragoza, Raúl Compés, who presented the Institute’s activities, highlighting the topics related to water, plant and animal health, and youth employability.
Mr Compés informed the ambassador that on 8 June, he would be welcoming a delegation from the Spanish Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation and the Spanish Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, thus reinforcing the chapter of cooperation and development in forthcoming years.
Spain is one of the founding countries of CIHEAM and hosts one of the Institutes in Zaragoza in Aragon.