Independent Strategic Analysis of Australia’s Global Interests

Global Food and Water Crises SWA Articles

Singapore: Inaugural Asian Food Security Conference

Background The Asian community will need to develop cooperative approaches to stop the recurrence of food price hikes like those of 2008. Attendees at the inaugural International Conference on Asian Food Security in Singapore last week, heard that mechanisms are needed to stop panic or speculative buying. Comment Many of the speakers at the conference,...

Madagascar Faces New Threat of Locust Infestation

Background  In June 2011, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation announced that a build-up of locusts in south-western Madagascar could turn into a plague if no action is taken. It is feared that the plague could endanger the lives of 13 million people unless a new campaign to contain the insects is advocated. Comment...

Chinese City of 4 million Left Dry as Pollution Contaminates Water

Background “Alarm,” “panic” and “crisis” are some of the words being used in Chinese and international media to describe the current water crisis occurring in Mianyang, Sichuan. The city of four million residents has lost its water source, due to pollution from an electrolytic manganese plant. The crisis, and indeed that is what it is,...

Tanzania: A Caution On Foreign Land Seekers

Background Foreign interest in Tanzanian agricultural land has been on the increase with the latest interest coming from a United Statesagribusiness which is set to acquire 324,000 hectares of land with the intention of bringing modern and sustainable agriculture to the country. Comment The investor suggests that smallholder farmers will benefit from the use of...

Carbon Farming Initiative Could Cost Farmers

Background The Carbon Farming Initiative, an expected sweetener in the Carbon Tax deal proposed by the Federal Government, has failed to excite farmers. At a conference held in Fremantle in mid-July, organised by the eastern Australian grain growers’ organisation, GrainGrowers, many farmers expressed anger at the initiative, saying it lacked clarity, would achieve nothing and...

Oman to House World’s First Commercial “Forward Osmosis” Desalination Plant

Background In June 2011, Modern Water, a UK-based company, won a £500,000 ($759,800) contract to build a desalination plant at Al Naghdah, in the Al Wusta region of Oman. The plant will be capable of supplying 200 cubic metres of fresh water per day. The new plant is understood to be the world’s first fully...

Global Food Prices Stabilise

The Food and Agricultural Organization’s Food Price Index rose one per cent to 234 points in June 2011. This is 39 per cent higher than in June 2010, but remains four per cent below its all-time high of 238 points in February this year. International sugar prices were behind much of the increase. The sugar...

Ethiopia: New Plans for Hydroelectric Production

Background On 29 June 2011, the Ethiopia Electric Power Corporation announced that it would build four hydroelectric dams on the Nile River. The major hydroelectric dam project is part of a plan to spend $4.5 billion to raise power generating capability. The project will be in addition to the Grand Renaissance dam, which is also...

New Report Highlights Food Security Challenges for Gulf States

Background A report by Alphen Capital into the food industries of the countries of the Gulf Co-operation Council (GCC), was published in late June. It estimates that, due to population growth and increased per capita income, food consumption will reach 51.5 million tonnes by 2015, up from 40 million tonnes currently. Comment Food imports into...

WA Liberal Party Food Security Vision

Background Food security was the focus of the Western Australian Liberal Party’s Forrest Division annual conference, held in Margaret River on 17-18 June 2011. The Conference was attended by WA Premier Colin Barnett and several other Government Ministers and parliamentarians. The “show of force” highlighted the growing awareness and concern in the Party about ensuring...

Publication Guide

  • Associate papers are primary source assessments written by FDI associates. The assessment topics range from regional bilateral relationships and opportunities and challenges in our neighbouring countries.

  • Feature interviews are interviews conducted by an FDI Research Manager. Interview topics range from the sustainability of our planet to the improved provision of emergency food aid.

  • Normally issued in hardcopy, these represent a comprehensive study of one of FDI’s four research areas.

  • Strategic alerts are priority current intelligence items. We provide these alerts when events such as military deployments or foreign election results occur.

  • A 1500 to 3000 word, single topic assessment.

  • A number of short articles addressing current intelligence topics, issued each week.

  • A record of discussions resulting from a single, or series of, roundtable conferences.

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