Bilateral meeting with ZHANG Jiabao, Academician of the Chinese Academy of Engineering

Date:May 22, 2024

source: FAO/Cristiano Minichiello

On May 17, 2024, Dongyu Qu, the Director-General of Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), had a bilateral meeting with Prof. Jiabao Zhang, Academician of the Chinese Academy of Engineering, SSSC President, at FAO Headquarters.

The Director-General warmly welcomed the delegation and acknowledged the experts’ outstanding contributions to the field of soil science. He emphasized that soil is a critical component of both national economic development and natural resources, underscoring the need to elevate its global importance. He introduced the Global Soil Partnership (GSP) as a crucial FAO platform that brings together experts, business representatives, NGOs, and other stakeholders to collaborate on soil protection and management.

Prof. Zhang thanked the Director-General for his warm reception and introduced the delegation’s experts, all of whom are leaders in the field of soil science in China. These experts possess extensive professional experience and academic expertise and are involved in significant soil projects, such as China’s 3rd national soil census, which aims to thoroughly assess and analyze soil status across China. Prof. Yongguan Zhu, Director General of the Research Center for Eco-Environmental Sciences, CAS, praised the Director-General’s leadership and expressed a desire to enhance cooperation with the FAO.

The Director-General responded that scientific and technological advancements are crucial for progress in the field of soil science, and supportive input and policies are also important. He suggested that the delegation should take a leading role and enhance collaboration with the FAO in developing strategic plans and action plans related to soil.

Prof. Zhang appreciated and agreed with the Director-General’s views and pledged to strengthen ties with the Global Soil Partnership to better support FAO. Finally, Prof. Zhang referred to the preparations for the 23rd World Congress of Soil Science, scheduled to be held in Nanjing, China, in 2026.

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