(Yonhap Interview) K-pop, Korean tech prowess could be useful tools against unprecedented food crisis: WFP official

SEOUL, Nov. 25 (Yonhap) — South Korea can and may do extra to assist resolve the unprecedented stage of the worldwide food disaster by maximizing its experiences, cultural affect and superior expertise, a senior official of the U.N. food company has mentioned.

Brian Lander, the deputy director on the emergency operations division of the World Food Program (WFP), made the remarks in an interview with Yonhap Information Company in Seoul on Wednesday when he raised an alarm over the worsening food insecurity emanating from the extended conflict in Ukraine, the COVID-19 pandemic and local weather change.

“What we’ve got now could be a disaster of entry to food. We’re now very a lot involved concerning the availability of food as a result of we do not have the identical stage of manufacturing. There’s not sufficient fertilizer getting out of Russia as there had been up to now,” Lander mentioned.

He referred to as the present scenario “an ideal storm,” with a number of unfavorable elements being layered to hit communities which are already susceptible and no assist mechanisms remaining.

The variety of acutely food insecure individuals on the earth will hit a report excessive of 349 million this 12 months, greater than doubling from the pre-pandemic stage of 150 million individuals, based on WFP information.

South Korea is a significant contributor to the company, offering 50,000 tons of rice and monetary contributions of about US$100 million this 12 months. It’s the solely nation on the earth that has change into a donor nation from being a recipient of U.N. assist, based on the WFP.

“Korea’s success story is extraordinary. Sadly, it would not occur fairly often. I feel we’ve got to revenue, and I feel Korea has quite a bit to share with the world when it comes to the way it managed, together with by its personal practices,” Lander mentioned.

He referred to as for Seoul’s function as “a political dealer” to assist deliver an finish to world conflicts, stressing {that a} political decision is a should to resolve food points.

The official additionally pointed to the worldwide recognition of its tradition and personal corporations boasting expertise prowess, as useful tools to assist combat the disaster.

“You are a reputable voice, so why not use it?” Lander mentioned. “You have bought Ok-pop. Folks could be getting collectively and including their voice to this. A social motion is one thing that very a lot could come from locations like South Korea, since you’ve bought that motivation.”

He then cited for example Elon Musk’s donation to the WFP of SpaceX’s Starlink satellite tv for pc communication system that helped facilitate communication and actions of its workers members.

When requested about North Korea, the official voiced considerations about its worsening food scenario amid the conflict in Ukraine and its impression on the availability of fertilizer, although his company will not be in a position to monitor the scenario as its worldwide employees needed to go away the nation final 12 months amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We will solely extrapolate that due to climate circumstances and satellite tv for pc imagery, we will get a normal sense that the scenario definitely hasn’t improved. We might be very a lot involved that it is maybe gotten worse. As quickly as we’re in a position to return, we’ll return,” he mentioned.

Lander is in South Korea to attend a world annual discussion board on the Official Growth Help (ODA) organized by Seoul’s agriculture ministry.

The WFP goals to help 160 million individuals all over the world this 12 months, which requires a price range of $22.2 billion. As of mid-November, it had secured $10.5 billion.

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By ayunda