Georgia tackles hunger problem

A Georgian man from Bulachauri, a Dushetian village. Photo by, 22 Sep 2014 - 17:08, Tbilisi,Georgia

Georgia is one of the world’s top countries to reduce the number of chronically undernourished people in the country but one in nine around the globe still do not have enough to eat, says three United Nations (UN) food agencies.

The 10 countries that have achieved greatest success in reducing the total number of hungry people in proportion to their national population were Armenia, Azerbaijan, Brazil, Cuba, Georgia, Ghana, Kuwait, Saint Vincent and Grenadines, Thailand and Venezuela.

The report by United Nations Food Agency (FAO), International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and World Food Programme (WFP), showed the number of hungry people in the world had fallen sharply in the past decade however 805 million – or one in nine people in the world – still did not have enough to eat.

Global efforts to improve nutrition had contributed to the overall trend of reducing hunger in developing countries and seen such countries move towards a Millennium Development Goal (MDG) of halving the number of people suffering from hunger between 1990 and 2015 was within reach "if appropriate and immediate efforts are stepped up,” stated the report entitled ‘The State of Food Insecurity in the World”.

To date, 63 developing countries have reached the UN goal target and six more are on track to reach it by 2015.

The latest MDG report for Georgia, presented last week, said those in poverty had decreased considerably, falling from 21 percent to 14.8 percent. Extreme poverty in Georgia had declined as well, with figures falling from 6.7 percent in 2010 to 3.7 percent in 2012.

The report stated the poverty gap in Georgia had significantly reduced although unemployment remained relatively high at 15 percent as of 2012. The MDG report highlighted Georgia’s progress towards attaining its goals.

At the MDG presentation Georgia’s Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili named the universal healthcare reform, free pre-school education, ‘Produce in Georgia’ farmers support program, the project for small-scale farmers, liberal changes in the Labour Code and free environment for businesses as the recent main achievements of Georgia.

However Garibashvili believed the country still faced many challenges.

"Still, much remains to be done and in the coming months and years the Government of Georgia will be focusing on sustainable development to accelerate the progress towards providing real opportunities and improving the living standards of its citizens. The MDG report represents a good baseline for this important endeavour,” Garibashvili said.