S. Douglas Bunch
U.S. Public Delegate
New York, New York
October 13, 2022
Thank you, Madame Chair, for hosting this timely side event. Thank you, panelists, for your insightful contributions.
The COVID-19 pandemic, Russia’s illegal war of aggression in Ukraine, extreme climate impacts, and natural disasters have had devastating impacts on the critical supply chains we all depend on for jobs, energy, food, medical supplies, and more. There is so much potential to do more together to identify innovative approaches and mobilize partnerships with businesses, international partners, and local communities to rebuild and strengthen supply chains, reduce and end near-term disruptions, and build long-term resilience. The United States is hard at work doing just this, and we welcome much more collaboration.
First, we must work together to mitigate the effects of the current supply chain crisis and prevent future shocks. More urgently, the United States is working tirelessly to get emergency food aid to those in need through bilateral and multilateral partnerships, including with the World Food Program. We are grateful to world leaders who joined the Global Food Security Summit during High Level Week. There we reaffirmed our collective commitment to act with urgency and at scale to respond to the pressing global food crises and avert extreme hunger for hundreds of millions of people around the world.
Second, we must work together to maintain open and predictable food and agricultural markets and end unjustified restrictive measures, such as export bans on food or fertilizer. The United States continues to avoid unnecessary export restrictions to ensure that consumers, farmers, and industry worldwide can access critical goods. U.S. sanctions do not prevent the export of Ukrainian or Russian agricultural commodities, including food and fertilizer, nor do they prevent transactions that are necessary for these exports, such as banking or shipping. Such policies only increase market volatility, threaten food security and nutrition on a global scale, and place the greatest strain on vulnerable populations already experiencing poverty, hunger, and malnutrition.
Third, we must work together to increase investments to accelerate the sustainable transformation of agriculture and food systems to make them more resilient and inclusive. The U.S.-initiated Sustainable Productivity Growth Coalition has mobilized more than 100 members to share and disseminate information about best practices, lessons learned, and innovative, evidence-based approaches to improve agricultural productivity. We call on all member states to join us in ensuring that smallholder farmers, local officials, labor, civil society, and historically underrepresented voices are at the table as the global community charts a path forward on supply chain resilience.
Before concluding, I would like to say a word about the current energy crisis. Russia’s unprovoked and unjustified war in Ukraine and Russia’s decision to weaponize energy have led to significant threats to global energy security. In response, the United States has engaged major producers at home and around the world to support additional natural gas supplies to Europe and U.S. companies to ramp up production and exports.
We look forward to expanding our partnerships in building a resilient and sustainable future.