The Regional Centre on Agrarian Reform and Rural Development for the Near East
(CARDNE) was launched following a 1983 FAO-sponsored meeting of representatives and observers from 18 Near Eastern states, also attended by observers from the International Fund for Agricultural Development and the World Food Programme. The agreement to establish CARDNE came into effect in 1987 following its ratification by six countries. CARDNE’s current member states are: Jordan, Tunisia, Sudan, Syria, Iraq, Lebanon, Egypt, Yemen and the Islamic Republic of Mauritania, Palestinian National Authority (MOA–PNA) as an Observer. All states in the Near East region are eligible to join the Centre after ratifying the Instrument of Accession and forwarding it to the Director General of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO-Rome).
Hosted by the government of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, CARDNE is an autonomous intergovernmental organization that is governed by a Council consisting of all member states, which meets once every two years. An executive committee of five member states oversees activities, and meets at least once a year. The Director General is the legal representative of the Centre.
The Centre signed collaboration agreements with many organizations such as: Food and
Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (F.A.O)-Rome, Economic and Social
Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA)-Beirut, the International Centre for Agricultural
Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA)-Allepo/Syria, the International Centre for Advanced
Mediterranean Agronomic Studies (CIHEAM)-Paris, the Arab Organization for Agricultural Development (AODA)-Khartoum, the Arab Centre for the Studies of Arid Areas and Dry Lands (ACSAAD)-Damascus/Syria, Queen Zein Al Sharaf Institute for Development (ZENID)-Jordan, Development and Employment Fund (DEF)-Jordan, and the Inter-Islamic Network on Water Resources Development and Management (INWRDAM).
CARDNE provides its member states with a broad range of services related to agricultural and pastoral communities in rural regions. Through a network of designated national centres in member states, it works toward the achievement of the following objectives:
- To assist national action and stimulate and promote regional cooperation relating to agrarian reform and rural development.
- To improve the production, income and living conditions of small-scale farmers, pastoral nomads, and other disadvantaged rural groups.
- To integrate rural people in the development process, and to promote their involvement in the social, economic and cultural life of their communities.
The Centre works toward achieving its objectives through a variety of activities which are
always based on participatory methods that draw on the expertise and experience of local
communities. These activities include:
* Conducting and promoting research and studies on various aspects of agrarian reform and
* Holding consultation conferences that allow officials, researchers, planners, executives and
local community representatives to exchange ideas and experience.
* Organizing regional and national training courses and workshops on the planning,
implementation, monitoring and evaluation of programmes and projects.
* Providing consultative expertise, technical support and liaison services to national centres
and other relevant organizations.
* Serving as a clearing house and data bank for information on agrarian reform and rural
In 2004 CARDNE adopted a diversified programme of activities to achieve its objectives. In this context, CARDNE implemented a number of regional workshops, national training
sessions and study tours.
CARDNE’s Executive Committee held its 21st ordinary annual meeting on 5 October 2004.The Chairman of the Committee, the representative of the Government of Egypt Prof. Dr.Mohammed Shafie Sallam, chaired the meeting and the agenda included the Centre’s
achievements throughout the last quarter in 2003 until the date of the meeting in 2004.
The discussions tackled the work plan as approved by the Governing Council, the activities of the Special Technical Services Programme directed toward raising funds for the Centre in
accordance with Article (9) Clause (6) of the Centre’s agreement of establishment
The Committee reached a recommendation to support the Centre’s efforts in this field, and
took a decision to submit recommendations to the Governing Council to approve the external reviewer report (the Republic of Iraq) for the fiscal period 2002 / 2003.
Official Meetings and Visits
CARDNE’s Director General was received by H.E. the Minister of Agriculture and
Agrarian Reform in Syria on 10 January 2004. The Minister and Director General reviewed CARDNE’s scope of activities and the work plan set for the years 2004 / 2005. The discussion was enriched by the significant views and comments made by H.E. the Syrian Minister.
The Director General was received by H.E. the Secretary General of the Ministry of
Agriculture in Jordan in his office. Both parties had discussions on aspects of cooperation between the Ministry and the Centre in addition to ways of promoting cooperation.
The Director General received in his office Dr. May Hani, Officer in Charge of Extension, Education and communication Services Department at the Regional Office of the UN Food and Agriculture (F.A.O / RNE) in Cairo. The Assistant Director General and Director of Development, Research and Studies Department at the Centre joined in the discussions, which revolved on ways of cooperation in rural and agricultural extension.
The Director General received in his office on 27 April 2004 the General Secretary of the Afro Asian Rural Development Organization, New Delhi, accompanied by the Executive Chief of the Middle East Regional Office (MERO) and the region technical expert. Sharing similar objectives, the parties reviewed the activities of the Organization and the Centre, and discussed plans for bilateral cooperation. They agreed to sign a bilateral Memorandum of Understanding aiming at implementing concerted activities in the near future.
The Director General received in his office on 27 April 2004 the Representative Resident of JICA in Tel Aviv, the Assistant Representative Resident of JICA in Jordan, and the programme Coordinator of JICA office in Amman. The discussion revolved on a number of the administrative and technical aspects of the five-year Programme to be implemented by CARDNE in cooperation with JICA for training the staff of the Ministry of Agriculture in the National Authority of Palestine. The Director presented the Centre’s goals and strategies, and the role CARDNE plays in enhancing regional cooperation.
The Director General received in his office on 13 August 2004 Mr. Richard Eason, the Economic Counsellor at the American Embassy, and Mrs. Hala Khouri, the agricultural affairs specialist at the Embassy. The parties reviewed the objectives and activities of the Centre as an autonomous intergovernmental organization operating at the level of the Near East region.
The Director General received in his office on 30 September 2004 the Vice Minister of the Ministry of Jihad–e–Agriculture in the Islamic Republic of Iran. Both parties discussed aspects of regional cooperation, the Centre’s activities and actions required for Iran’s accession to the Centre.
The Director General received in his office on 3 October 2004 the economic expert and the Chief of the Sustainable Agricultural and Rural Development Team at UN-ESCWA . The parties discussed the participation of the Centre’s experts in the Seminar organized by UN-ESCWA in December 2004 on Rural Development: Policies, Strategies and Institutions.
The Assistant Director General met in his office Dr. Orita Iwami, the expert at the Japanese International Cooperation Agency in Tokyo (JICA). The discussions revolved on theoutcomes of the training programme implemented by the Centre for a number of officials at the Ministry of Agriculture in the National Authority of Palestine during August and September 2004 in the field of institutional capacity building and human resources management. Additionally, the parties discussed the programme to be implemented in the framework of the Agreement on Training Programme in a third country that was signed between CARDNE and JICA Office in Amman.
Summary of Activities 2004
CARDNE organized or sponsored five regional workshops constituting 31% of the total
activities undertaken by the Centre Four workshops were organized and implemented in
Jordan and Syria, whereas the Centre sponsored the participation of experts from member
states in one workshop in Lebanon.
Training activity records the highest score of the total activities (50%) as CARDNE
conducted eight national training sessions, three of which were implemented in Jordan, two in Syria, and one in each of Lebanon, Egypt and Yemen. Additionally, three study tours (19% of the total activities) were organized by the Centre.
Activities 2004 in Figures
Activities 2004 by Member States
Activities 2004 illustrated in Diagram
Agreements and Plans
* CARDNE signed an agreement with the Japanese International Cooperation Agency
(JICA) on 9 August 2004 in the presence of representatives from the Embassy of Palestine
in Amman and the Supervision and Training Board. The agreement aims at implementing a
five-year training programme extending over the period from 2004 to 2008. The programme targets staff from the Ministry of Agriculture in the National Authority of Palestine, and provides the employees and trainers of the Department of Human Resources Development Management with relevant training in the field of institutional capacity building,
human resources management and institutions promotion.
In the framework of the cooperation between the Centre and the UN Economic and Social Committee of West Asia, and in light of the positive outcomes of the Project for the
Rehabilitation of the Workers in Local Community Development implemented in
collaboration with Mercy Cops Int. in four Arab countries, CARDNE and the Social
Department of the Committee have agreed to prepare the Manual for Participatory
Development Research. This manual, which gains full support from the Arabian Gulf Fund
(AGFUND), will be issued within the few coming months.
* Regional workshop in the field of follow-up and assessment of agricultural development
projects in Amman, from 28-30 March 2004. CARDNE conducted this workshop in
cooperation with the International Fund for Agricultural Development (I.F.A.D). The
workshop, which was organized under the auspices of H.E. the Minister of Agriculture in
Jordan, included thirty two participants from projects management units in Syria, Lebanon and Jordan. Experts from the I.F.A.D, and the regional coordinator of the Technical Support for Using Logic Approach in Projects Planning and Assessment were among the participants. Also, the Social Gender Expert and Director of Development Research and Studies Department from the center, participated in the discussions.
* Regional Experts Workshop for the Promotion of the Dissemination of the FAO Cooperative Training Manual in Arabic in Amman, from 6-8 June 2004. CARDNE organized this workshop in collaboration with the Rural Institutions Services Section at F.A.O.- SDAR / Rome. The workshop, which was conducted under the auspices of H.E. the Minister of Justice / 8 State Minister of Prime Ministry Affairs and Chairman of the Jordanian Cooperative Institution, was attended by a number of experts from CARDNE member states. Also, Mr. Janos Juhasz, Cooperatives and Rural Organizations Officer, SDAR / F.A.O in Rome, and Mr. Bernd Seiffert, local Institutions and Rural Livelihoods Officer, SDAR / F.A.O in Rome, took part in the workshop activities. Copies of the training manual and CD-ROM were distributed to the participants for the use of the participating experts.The workshop agenda focused on the Training of Trainers Manual, which was drafted and produced in Arabic by F.A.O – SDAR / Rome, for the first time and included activities addressing a variety of topics. Among these were: SWOT-based analysis, analysis of cooperative leadership, impact of globalization on the cooperative movement, communication and intercommunication difficulties, and planning for public relations campaigns.
* Regional Workshop on Options of Reform in Agriculture Extension in the Near East in
Amman, from 2-4 October 2004. CARDNE organized this workshop in collaboration
with the Regional Office of the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (F.A.O /RNE) / Cairo, and the Extension, Education and Communication Services Department (SDRE) at the Organization Head Offices in Rome. The objective of this workshop was to highlight the challenges facing agricultural extension and concerned institutions. It asserted the need to adopt modern techniques that ensure the promotion of this field to the extent that contributes to the advancement of this activity and the agricultural sector as a whole.
General directors, directors of agricultural extension and experts from Iran, Pakistan,
Turkey, Egypt, Tunisia, Yemen, Syria, Lebanon, Bahrain, Jordan, Oman and Palestine were among the participants. Besides, a number of representatives of international and regional institutions, universities and experts participated in this workshop. CARDNE’s representative to the workshop was the Chairman of the Executive Committee. Also, the Director General of the Agricultural Extension and Cooperation in Iraq, CARDNE’s member of Governing Council, was among the participants.
Regional workshop on Identifying the Training Package for the Rehabilitation of Workers
in Local Community Development, Damascus, from 19-21 December 2004. By support
from the Islamic Development Bank / Jeddah, CARDNE conducted this workshop in
cooperation with the Ministry of Agriculture and Agrarian Reform in Syria, and the UN
Economic and Social Committee for West Asia (UN-ESCWA). Twenty five specialists
from eleven countries in the region beside the National Authority of Palestine attended this
workshop. The agenda addressed crucial topics relating to technical and organizational
frameworks and activities, methods of preparing project proposals for submission to donors
of local development projects. Moreover, the participants discussed a number of proposed
projects and conducted field visits to the sites of the local development projects geared to
promoting the income of the rural families in the southern area of Syria.
Regional seminar on Rural Development: Policies, strategies and Institutions, in Beirut from
20-22 December 2004. The Sustainable Development and Productivity Section at the
Economic and Social Committee of West Asia (UN-ESCWA) at the ESCWA Headquarters in Beirut organized this workshop. CARDNE sponsored the participation of several experts from Jordan, Lebanon and Egypt in this seminar. Participants presented papers on rural development in the three countries they represent.
* In cooperation with Jordan River Foundation, Amman / Jordan, CARDNE implemented
training sessions in the field of processing diet fat-free dairy (yogurt and cheese) in Ajloun
Governorate. The sessions, which lasted for three days from 1–3 March 2004, was attended by twenty five ladies from Ajloun neighbourhood.
* National training workshop on Computerized Drip Irrigation Design and Management. CARDNE supported the participation of two Agricultural Engineers from the Ministry of Agriculture in Jordan in the training sessions conducted by the Training Centre at the Agricultural Engineers Association in Jordan from 29 May – 3 June 2004. The sessions focused on the use of a programme designed by F.A.O for the estimation of referential
evaporation and transpiration of a particular area, and using the information relating soil, plants, slope area and flora humidity percentage. The workshop agenda included
a field visit to the National Drip Irrigation Co. to examine the irrigation pipes produced
by the company. Additionally, a visit to a farm located in Madaba Governorate was scheduled in order to examine and assess the irrigation system applied there.
* Training sessions on Institutional Capacity Building and Human Resources Development. In collaboration with the Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA), CARDNE implemented this workshop under the auspices of H.E. the Minister of Water and Irrigation and Minister of Agriculture in Jordan from 22 August – 29 September 2004 in Amman. The
objective of the workshop was to qualify the staff of the Ministry of Agriculture in the National Authority of Palestine by providing essential training on developing human resources and building institutional capacity. fifteen high officials from the Palestinian Ministry of Agriculture participated in the training.On behalf of the Minister of Agriculture, the opening session was patronized by the Director General of the National Centre for Agricultural Research and Technology Transfer (NCARTT), and was attended by
H.E. the Ambassador of Japan in Amman, the representative of the Ambassador of Palestine, Resident Representative of JICA in Jordan, and a number of officials at the Japanese Embassy, JICA, agricultural institutions in Jordan in addition to experts
and trainers. In his opening speech, CARDNE’s Director General commended JICA for their profound competence and the generous support they provide to the development of human resources in the Near Eastern states.
* CARDNE sponsored the participation of two Agricultural Engineers from the Ministry of
Agriculture in Jordan in the training programme in the field of “New Systems in Growing and Pruning Olive Trees”, in Damascus from 2-6 April 2004. The training, which was organized by the Agricultural Engineers Association in Jordan and Syria, was attended by thirty four participants from both countries. The training agenda included 12 lectures and practical training focusing on methods of growing, pruning and producing high quality olive oil. The
objective of this training was to enable olive oil producers to export their product and to beat competition in the world market.
* In cooperation with CARDNE, and under the auspices of H.E. the Minister of Agriculture and Agrarian Reform in Syria, the Directorate of Rehabilitation and Training at the Ministry implemented a training workshop on “Assessment of the Developed Academic
Curricula for Third Grade Secondary Agricultural Vocational Schools / General Agriculture/
Agricultural Machinery / Veterinary” from 28 –29 July 2004. The workshop, which was attended by fifty nine participants from the various Directorates of the Ministry, Syrian universities, and agricultural secondary schools, endeavors to cope with the agricultural development strategies 2001-2010 ratified by the political and governmental leadership in Syria. The discussions focused on the status of intermediate and agricultural vocational education, proposal for promotion of this sector, forms of designing learning units of the developed academic curricula and axes of development based on the specialization curricula of agriculture, agricultural machinery and veterinary.
* Two experts from CARDNE conducted training sessions over a period of eleven days to the staff of the Management Unit of Water Sector Rehabilitation and Modernization Project,
which is implemented by the Lebanese Ministry of Agriculture. The training focused on field and comprehensive assessment and follow up based on logical framework, and designing assessment forms in view of the logical framework matrix. Additionally, the sessions provided training on data analysis and the incorporation of the social gender concept in planning and implementing developmental projects in the framework of the technical assistance grant agreed upon between the Centre and the International Fund for Agricultural Development, I.F.A.D / Rome.
* CARDNE sponsored the training sessions which was organized by the Institute for Agricultural Extension and Rural Development Research in the period from 25–29 December 2004 in Cairo. Fifteen researchers and assistant researchers from the Institute participated in these sessions, and five researcher lecturers delivered training material, which focused on Systems Related to Agricultural Extension Information.
* Under the auspices of H.E. the Minister of Agriculture and Irrigation in Yemen, CARDNE sponsored the national training sessions conducted on 27 December 2004. The training, which focused on the implementation of ports inspection procedures and procedures relating to notary public security capacity, targeted quality control inspectors as well as insecticides and plant quarantine inspectors who were given the notary public security character. It also targeted plant quarantine inspectors controlling land, sea and air ports in Yemen. Thirty five participants attended the training, which tackled the obstacles and restraints facing the trainees in the process of implementing their tasks.
- • Tunisia – Jordan 2 – 16 March 2004
In collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture and Environment and Water Resources
in Tunisia, the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (F.A.O) / Rome, the Ministry of
Agriculture in Jordan and other Jordanian corporations, CARDNE conducted a study tour
for two Tunisian officials in Jordan. The Tunisian Officials held a series of meetings with
officials from a number of technical sections, in particular the management of Rural
Development, Extension and Environment at the Jordanian Ministry of Agriculture, and
the National Centre for Agricultural Research and Technical Transfer (NCARTT). The
objective of this tour was to introduce the Tunisian officials to Jordan’s experience in
strategic extension campaigns especially in relation to olives and grains production. The
tour included also field visits to the Governorates of Amman, Zarqa, Jerash, Madaba and
Irbid, in addition to two other visits to the Faculty of Agriculture at the University of
Jordan, and to CARDNE’s Headquarters.• Yemen – Lebanon / Jordan, August 2004
In cooperation with the Ministries of Agriculture in Jordan and Lebanon, CARDNE
organized a study tour on “Distinctive Leadership” for two high officials at the Ministry
of Agriculture and Irrigation in Yemen. The Yemeni officials met with a number of high
officials in Lebanon and Jordan and conducted field visits to a number of agricultural
• Tunisia – Jordan, 24-30 December 2004
CARDNE organized a field visit for five feminine high officers from the Ministry of Agriculture and Environment and Water Resources in Tunisia to examine Jordan’s experience in extension and the integration of women in the rural areas in the agricultural activity. The visit programme was laid out and implemented in cooperation with the Ministry of Agriculture in Jordan and included meetings with the Secretary General of the Ministry of Agriculture, the Director General of the Agricultural Credit Corporation, and a number of officials from the Ministry and the Corporation. It also included field visits to agricultural enterprises run by women, feminine cooperatives and Directorates of Agriculture in Kerak, Ajloun and Middle Ghor. The delegation was introduced to the extension programmes implemented by the Ministry, which concentrate on extension for women in the rural areas through the Directorate of Agricultural Extension, Directorates of Agriculture and agricultural projects, particularly Agricultural Resources Management Project in Kerak.
* CARDNE participated in the 27th Regional Conference of the UN Food and Agriculture
Organization (F.A.O), which was held in Doha- Qatar from 13 – 17 March 2004. This
conference addressed a number of topics including the regional programme of demand for
water for purposes of agriculture and food safety under the circumstances emerging from
the new international trade trends.
Professor Dr. Mohammad Shafie Sallam Chairman of the Executive Committee represented
CARDNE in this regional conference.
Exchange of Information
* CARDNE received from the Ministry of Agriculture and Agrarian Reform in Syria a CDROM containing all bulletins on agricultural extension issued up to 2003 by the Directorate of Agricultural Extension at the Ministry. CARDNE distributed copies of this CD-ROM to all concerned ministries in the member states to allow them to make the utmost benefit of the distinctive Syrian experience in this field.
* CARDNE received from the Ministry of Agriculture and Agrarian Reform in Syria a series of agricultural extension publications on agriculture comprising of agricultural agenda on key vegetables and fruits in Syria, Syrian cattle and safflower.