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Global Land Forum seeks to open up global debate on sustainable, responsible land governance

By Maria Weldali - Mar 19,2022 - Last updated at Mar 19,2022

Agriculture Minister Khalid Hneifat speaks during a press conference on Saturday in preparation for the Global Land Forum 2022 and the first ever Youth GLF that will take place in Jordan between May 21 and 26 (Petra photo)

AMMAN — The Global Land Forum 2022 (GLF) and the first ever Youth GLF that will take place in Jordan between May 21 and 26 “is an opportunity to connect with those who share Jordan’s goal of achieving the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda”, Agriculture Minister Khalid Hneifat said on Saturday.

Hneifat’s remarks came during a press conference in preparation of the global event. Ambassador of the European Union to Jordan Maria Hadjitheodosiou, Co-Chair of National Organising Committee (SEEDS Jordan) Raed Gharib, and ILC Regional Coordinator in Europe and the MENA region Rabie Morsy Wahba attended the press conference.

The GLF is a triannual meeting that brings together NGOs, research centres, government agencies, institutions and community-based organisations in the hosting country to build a vision and roadmap for land governance based on local and national priorities, according to the International Land Coalition (ILC) website.

Jordan will be the first Middle Eastern country to host the GLF, which is organised by the ILC, partnering with the Jordanian Ministry of Agriculture and the EU, together with SEEDS Jordan.

The GLF seeks to open up the global debate on sustainable and responsible land governance to Jordan and the Arab world, and engage youth from Jordan and abroad to build a sustainable future, in addition to mainstreaming women’s agenda into its efforts and main goals.

“The GLF takes place at a decisive moment in history: Scientists are warning us that the window to avoid a climate catastrophe is closing and the need for progress on the Sustainable Development Goals is growing more and more urgent,” read a GLF statement.

Hneifat pointed out that Jordan’s priority is to achieve food security and that the land sector receives great attention from His Majesty King Abdullah.

He also highlighted the challenges facing sustainable land and water management in Jordan, most notably land and soil degradation, which pose a major threat to food security, the sustainability of livelihoods and biodiversity conservation.

“The GLF is not an event, it is an opportunity for Jordan to show the world what it is to build an inclusive and people-centred land governance system,” Wahba said, adding that bringing together the global land community to overcome inequality, build democracy and sustainable food systems, is a “pivotal moment”.

The EU ambassador noted that the GLF aims to initiate a debate on land governance in Jordan, the Arab region and the world.

“Forum themes are timely and relevant globally and locally: Decentralisation that protects rural lands and ensures equitable access to land; climate change challenges; supporting youth in rural areas; regional partnerships; empowerment of women; peace building and harmonious coexistence,” Hadjitheodosiou wrote on her Twitter account on Saturday.

Providing background briefings, Gharib told The Jordan Times: “We are excited. We are currently having virtual meetings with the 100 young participants, who will be joining the first ever Youth GLF.” 

“Jordan is an oasis of stability for the region…. that values ethnic and religious diversity,” said Gharib during the press conference.

He noted that the forum will be a “changing point” in regard to land governance.

 

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