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Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Seminars held in the Ñuble and Biobío regions addresses how to develop and strengthen rural areas in Chile’s regions

The APEC agenda moved to the cities of Chillán and Chiguayante in order to create an opportunity for dialogue about the importance of development in rural areas and their role in food security, and also to look at tools for promoting exports from companies based in rural areas.

Friday, June 21, 2019. Within the context of APEC Chile 2019 and the implementation of Chile’s National Rural Development Policy, led by the Ministry of Agriculture and the Office of Agricultural Studies and Policies (ODEPA), two seminars were held from June 19 to 21 in the cities of Chillán in the Ñuble region, and Chiguayante in the Biobío region.

At the Gran Hotel Isabel Riquelme, in Chillán, on June 20 and 21, a seminar was held entitled "Strengthening Rural Areas as a contribution to Food Security in the Asia-Pacific region". Taking part in the event, which was organized by APEC Chile 2019 and ODEPA, were the Regional Governor of Ñuble, Martín Arrau, and the national director of ODEPA, María Emilia Undurraga, together with leading Chilean and international experts on rural issues, who discussed and presented different visions for improving quality of life and increasing opportunities in rural areas.

"When we talk about rural development and food security, we are discussing issues that are inherent to the Ñuble region and all its inhabitants, and everything that was presented here will help us to implement new public policies that will not leave anyone behind," said the Regional Governor.

For her part, the director of ODEPA stressed, "we want to reach out to regions that have significant rural areas, and in this respect we believe that Ñuble is going to be a region that will teach everyone in Chile how to perceive the rural world."

The seminar was held in two sessions. The first was open to the whole community and allowed the experts to describe the challenges to and opportunities for building strong and dynamic rural areas, as well as to present their experiences with rural development and its contribution to food security.

During the activity, presentations were made by Kelly Barry, an economic development researcher of the Ngāi Tahu, a Māori iwi (tribe) in New Zealand, who explained the relevance of culture and rural identity; and the deputy director of the Center for the Socioeconomic Impact of Environmental Policies (CESIEP), Alejandra Engler, who underlined the importance of promoting sustainable development in rural areas.

Furthermore, APEC member economies, such as Indonesia, Thailand, Papua New Guinea, Peru, the Philippines and Vietnam, presented their experiences with strengthening and developing the rural sector.

The seminar concluded on Friday, June 21, when the APEC economies met to synthesize shared challenges in order to move forward on rural issues and set up areas of action for improving the implementation of existing and future policies, and strengthen commitment to their rural areas.

APEC Citizens

More than 115 kilometers away from Chillán, and a day earlier, on June 19, the APEC Citizens "Rural Development and Strengthening" meeting was held in Chiguayante in the Biobío Region.

Taking part at the event, which was organized by the Ministry of Agriculture and APEC Chile 2019, in collaboration with ProChile, were the mayor of the Chiguayante municipality, Antonio Rivas, the regional director of ProChile, Gino Mosso, and the Head of the Regional and Rural Policy Unit of the OECD, José Enrique Carcilazo, among other guests.

Chilean and international experts discussed tools for promoting the exports of companies based in rural areas, development of the beekeeping sector and the internationalization of the wine industry.

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