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Tánaiste to discuss global hunger with US Secretary of State Clinton during visit to Tanzania

Hunger, Poverty, News/feature, Tanzania, 2011

The Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Mr Eamon Gilmore, T.D., will visit Tanzania, one of the priority countries for the Government’s aid programme, from 9 to 12 June 2011.  While there, the Tánaiste will assess the impact of Ireland’s aid programme in the fight against poverty and hunger.  He will meet senior members of Government, and will co-host with US Secretary of State Hilary Clinton, a High Level Forum on the fight against hunger.  

During his visit the Tánaiste will have discussions with Prime Minister Peter Pinda, and other members of the Tanzanian Government.  He will meet local communities, representatives of Irish NGOs and business contacts.  His programme includes visits to agriculture programmes and to education and health facilities which are funded by Ireland.  The Tánaiste will also visit a rural electrification scheme being run by ESB International. 

On Sunday 12 June, the Tánaiste and US Secretary of State Clinton will co-host a High Level Forum in Dar es Salaam on the fight against hunger in Africa.  This is part of the ongoing cooperation between Ireland and the US to tackle global hunger and malnutrition, and which was highlighted by President Obama during his recent visit to Ireland. 

Looking ahead to the visit to Tanzania, the Tánaiste said:

“I am looking forward to seeing the impact that our aid programme is having on the ground and to meeting the organisations and local communities that we are supporting in the fight against poverty and malnutrition. 

I am particularly pleased to have this opportunity, with Secretary of State Clinton to highlight once again the importance of the global fight against hunger and malnutrition. Ireland, in partnership with the US, has taken a leadership role on this critical development issue which is at the heart of our aid programme.  Our work with the US will help ensure that children in some of the poorest countries in the world, including Tanzania, get the nutrition they need to survive, and to lead healthy and productive lives.

I am particularly interested too in examining the opportunities that exist for closer trade and business links between Ireland and Tanzania.  I look forward to meeting Irish and African business people and to discussing how we might develop the businesses which can provide the jobs and opportunities which are a key part of the work in helping to lift people in Africa out of poverty”. 

8 June 2011

Note for Editors

  • Tanzania has been a partner country for Ireland’s official programme of overseas development, Irish Aid, since 1975.  This year Irish Aid will fund vital health, nutrition, agriculture and governance programmes in Tanzania.
  • Ireland’s overseas development programmes in its partner countries place a strong emphasis on hunger and food security. 
  • The Government has prioritised the eradication of hunger and is playing a central role internationally on the first of the Millennium Development Goals - to halve the proportion of people suffering from extreme poverty and hunger by 2015.
  • Ireland and the United States co-hosted a high-profile event on Hunger at the United Nations Millennium Development Goals Summit in September 2010. The event included the launch of the Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) initiative and the ‘1000 Days’ movement to tackle maternal and infant undernutrition.  The 1,000 Days initiative focuses on the critical first thousand days of a child’s life – during pregnancy and up to a child’s second birthday. Undernutrition during this time results in irreversible long-term diminished cognitive and physical development.
  • The High Level Forum in Tanzania on 12 June, co-hosted by the Tánaiste and Secretary of State Clinton, will look at progress on scaling up nutrition programmes globally and at Irish-US cooperation on the issue. Nutrition is a key driver of change in relation to reducing hunger. The Tánaiste will also discuss hunger more generally with the Secretary of State and the Tanzanian Government as well as progress and the challenges facing Tanzania of hunger and food security.