On May 18, the China-Latin America Agricultural Education and Research Innovation Alliance (CLAERIA), proposed by SCAU, held its first General Assembly as well as the Executive Council Meeting, with more than 210 participants from 59 member units from China and Latin-American countries online and offline. At the conference, SCAU President Liu Yahong was elected as the Chairman of Executive Council and Vice President Qiu Rongliang as the Secretary-General of CLAERIA. The conference reviewed and approved the Work Report 2020 and discussed the Work Plan 2021 of CLAERIA.
On behalf of the Alliance, Vice President Qiu Rongliang summarized the work of the Alliance since its establishment last December in three aspects:
First, the Alliance has expanded to include another 13 new members from China and Latin America: Universidad Anáhuac Cancún, Mexico, Universidad Nacional Arturo Jauretche, Argentina, Universidad de San Pablo-Tucumán, Argentina, Long Ping High-Tech Biotecnologia Ltda, Brazil, Universidade Federal de Mato Grosso, Brazil, Núcleo de Relações Internacionais do Estado de Mato Grosso, Brazil, Northwest Agriculture & Forestry University of China, National Science and Technology Innovation Center for Modern Agricultural Industry (Guangzhou), Guizhou Aerospace Intelligent Agriculture Co., Ltd., WENS Foodstuff Group Co., Ltd., Guangdong Nutriera Group Co., Ltd., Chengdu Newsun Crop Science Co., Ltd., and Longping Agriculture Science Co., Ltd..
Second, the Alliance has established effective communication with member universities by holding over 30 video conferences, through which the alliance members have reached the consensus on cooperation in fields of crop breeding, protection and utilization of agricultural resources, disease and pest control, smart agriculture, etc. More than 10 projects have entered the detailed consultation stage.
Third, the Alliance has exerted more influence in China and Latin America. More and more governmental organizations, universities and research institutions are getting more interests in getting involved in the Alliance programs. One delegation consistent of Consulates General in Guangzhou of seven Latin American countries paid an official visit to South China Agriculture University in this January with the aim to understand better the Alliance and promote it to their countries they represent. The official website of the Alliance has been constructed as well as the exclusive email account and WeChat public platform for efficient communication.
The General Assembly also elected one Director and 14 Deputy Director Units as the Alliance organizational executive council members. South China Agricultural University (SCAU) is the Director Unit of the Executive Council, and 14 Deputy Director Units are: China Agricultural University, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Chinese Academy of Tropical Agricultural Sciences, Nanjing Agricultural University, Huazhong Agricultural University, Universidad Nacional Agraria La Molina, Perú, la Universidad Nacional de Colombia, la Universidad Federal de Santa María de Brasil y otras 19 instituciones como miembros del consejo permanente de la Alianza,cuatro secretarías generales se establecieron en China, Colombia, Argentina y México respectivamente, en los compuses de la Universidad Agricola del Sur de la China, la Universidad Nacional de Colombia, la Universidad Nacional del Sur de Argentina, la Universidad de Guadalajara de México.
On behalf of the first Executive Council, President Liu Yahong said that SCAU will effectively assume all the responsibilities entrusted by the Alliance, follow the Charter of the alliance and build up platforms of cooperation.
First, we should cooperate closely within the China-Latin America cooperation framework and satisfy the needs of agricultural and rural development. We should focus on key areas, and carry out precise and innovative cooperation to deepen the integration of the agricultural industrial and value chains between the two sides. Second, we must integrate and make good use of the existing resources, and promote the co-construction and sharing of scientific and educational resources within the alliance. Third, we should take the initiative to join the global innovation network.
Representing the Deputy Director executive council members, Mr. Luis Fernando Gaviria Trujillo, the Vice Chairman of CLAERIA Executive Council and the Rector de la Universidad Tecnológica de Pereira, Colombia, said that CLAERIA has helped build up a bridge for communication between China and Latin America for agricultural education and research innovation. Universidad Tecnológica de Pereira, Colombia will be responsible for liaison with LA universities and actively promote close cooperation between China and Latin America.
Under the witness of the participants, inter-university cooperation framework agreements were signed between SCAU and Universidade Federal de Santa Maria, Brasil, Universidad Anáhuac Cancún, Mexico, Universidad Nacional Arturo Jauretche, Argentina, Universidad de San Pablo -Tucumán, Argentina, Universidad Nacional Agraria La Molina, Peru, and la Escuela Superior Politécnica Agropecuaria de Manabí Manuel Félix López, Ecuador. The unveiling ceremony of the Soybean Breeding Base of SCAU in Brazil was also held online.
Mr. Edimilson Linares, Longping's Technical Director in Brazil made a short video speech during the meeting in which he reviewed the close cooperation with SCAU since 2018. The two parties have exchanged more than 200 soybean germplasms and have established an international base for improvement and soybean production in Brazil. He expressed his strong confidence about the future collaboration in germplasm innovation, talent developing and new varieties of soybean which will benefit mutually to China and Brazil.
In the Executive Council Meeting that followed, Prof. Du Taisheng, Vice President of China Agricultural University, Prof. Hu Feng, Vice President of Nanjing Agricultural University, Chen Tianjin, Director of the International Cooperation Office of the Chinese Academy of Sciences Agrícolas, and Liu Kui, Director of the Chinese Academy of Tropical Agricultural Sciences and Prof. Hugo Cerda from the Simón Rodríguez Núcleo Mucuchíes National Experimental University of Venezuela, presented constructive comments on the Alliance work plan of 2021.
President Liu Yahong noted in her closing speech that the meeting is very successful, the proposals further clarified the priorities for China-Latin America agricultural cooperation. The Secretariat will draw up a detailed annual work plan, giving priority to a variety of activities from holding symposiums and technical exchanges, building agricultural R&D centers, joint laboratories, agricultural demonstration parks and other cooperation platforms, carrying out practical agricultural technological training courses, and accelerating the implementation of specific projects mentioned.
(Translated by Wu Kexi, Chen Xiuhong, Yang Guifang,
Proofread by Yu Shaohong Office of International Relations)