Semarang (ANTARA) - Chairperson of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations-Business Advisory Council (ASEAN-BAC) 2023 Arsjad Rasjid has said he is hoping to establish food security cooperation with Russia and India at the 55th ASEAN Economic Ministers' (AEM) Meeting.

He conveyed the hope after India and Russia recently implemented restrictive policies related to their food products, which could threaten global food security.

"If we talk about food security, then we talk about survival, about humans. We speak as ASEAN, and this ASEAN business is very supportive," Rasjid said after the ASEAN-BAC Joint Business Council (JBC) Meeting here on Friday.

Food security is a crucial issue at this time amid the threat of a global food crisis and the impact of climate change, he noted.

Therefore, it is hoped that the AEM forum will generate cooperation with various countries in order to achieve global food security.

"The top priority is people. However, we want to make sure our people come first. Therefore, we support every effort made to support food security," he said.

The 55th AEM 2023 is being held from August 17 to 22, 2023.

On the first day of AEM on Thursday, Indonesia chaired a meeting of senior ASEAN economic officials, which was to continue until Friday before taking up the ministerial meeting agenda from Saturday (August 19) to Tuesday (August 22).

Meanwhile, the AEM agenda on Monday (August 21) will consist of separate meetings with Russia and India at the 12th AEM-Russia Consultation and 20th AEM-India Consultation forums, respectively.

In July 2023, the Indian Government officially banned the export of non-basmati white rice to secure domestic rice stocks and restrain price increases in the domestic market as a result of climate change.

In September last year, India had also announced a ban on the export of broken rice.

In the meantime, Russia has decided to leave the Black Sea Grain Initiative, which is expected to further threaten global food security.

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Translator: Indra Arief Pribadi, Katriana
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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