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23 March, 2021, Rome – The International Land Coalition, a global alliance working to put people at the centre of land governance, announced that the next Global Land Forum will take place from 26-31 March, 2022 in Jordan, under the patronage of the Royal Court and the Government of Jordan.
Addressing the most pressing land issues for the host country and region, the Forum will be a catalyst to develop a vision and roadmap for land governance based on local and national priorities. Over the next year, a wide group of stakeholders will participate in the drafting of a National Land Strategy that will be launched at the event.
“The Global Land Forum will be an important opportunity to connect with those who share in our goal of achieving the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda ”, said Khalid Hunifat, Jordan’s Minister of Agriculture. “With our national priority to achieve food security, the land sector receives great attention from His Majesty King Abdullah II,” the Minister confirmed.
It will be the first time in the event’s history that it is hosted by a country in the Middle East, part of an important and newly expanding region for the International Land Coalition.
“The Global Land Forum isn’t just an event, it is an opportunity for Jordan to show the world how it is building an inclusive and ‘people-centred’ land governance system” says Michael Taylor, Director of the International Land Coalition. “It is also a pivotal moment for the global land community to come together in addressing the complex linkages between land governance, sustainable food systems, overcoming inequality, and building democracy” he adds.
Among some of the country’s biggest challenges, Jordan is one of the top five driest countries in the world, with its water tables at risk of drying up by 2030 as its population grows and the climate crisis intensifies. It is also a country that hosts the largest proportion of refugees in the world and a destination for economic migrants from neighbouring countries. Tackling the climate crisis, land conflicts, displacement and peacebuilding are just a few of the major themes that will dominate the Forum, with land rights remaining at the centre of future solutions.
Jordan also boasts one of the youngest populations in the world, with those under 30 making up more than 70% of its population. Recognising the critical role young people have, the first ever GLF Youth will bring together youth from Jordan and around the world to present their vision of the future to the GLF delegates and wider land community.
“Today’s youth are incredibly educated, and the young women and men are invaluable assets that no country can afford to waste. They bring to the job market their energy, talent and creativity together with cutting-edge skills and the motivation that enable companies to grow, innovate and prosper,” said Ra’ed Gharib from national NGO, SEEDS Jordan.
Taking the lead nationally, ILC member, SEEDS Jordan, is overseeing a National Organising Committee, which is co-chaired by the Government of Jordan. Several government ministries, including Agriculture, Youth, Environment and Local Administration are working alongside twenty Jordan-based national and international organisations to develop the National Land Strategy.
“Jordan is an oasis of stability for the region, with a spirit of tolerance that values ethnic and religious diversity”, says Gharib. “These things help to contribute to the stable and peaceful climate here.”
By bringing in young voices, Gharib hopes the GLF will promote learning and give young participants access to decision-making over land and natural resources, leading the country’s efforts for a more sustainable future.
ILC is a global alliance of civil society and intergovernmental organisations working together to put people at the centre of land governance. The shared goal of ILC’s over 250 members is to realise land governance for and with people at the country level, responding to the needs and protecting the rights of women, men and communities who live on and from the land. www.landcoalition.org
SEEDS is a local NGO involved in youth development ,empowering women, promoting environmental protection and awareness, and intercultural understanding and peace throughout Jordan.