On 2 December 2016, the Permanent Mission of the Kingdom of Thailand to the United Nations and the Land Development Department, Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives of Thailand, in collaboration with the Permanent Mission of the Kingdom of Lesotho to the United Nations, the Permanent Mission of Turkey to the United Nations, the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO), and the Secretariat of the United Nations Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD), jointly organised the 2016 World Soil Day event under the theme Soils and pulses, a symbiosis for life and for halting soil degradation at the United Nations Headquarters in New York.
H.E. Mr. Virachai Plasai, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of the Kingdom of Thailand to the United Nations, delivered an opening remarks on behalf of the co-hosts, placing an emphasis on the importance of soils and soil conservation. He also reiterated the significant role of Thailand in the field of soil development and sustainable soil management carried out through the Global Soil Partnership and Asian Soil Partnership and through the application of the Sufficiency Economy Philosophy of His Majesty the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej. Moreover, H.E. Mr. Kobsak Chutikul, former ambassador and former member of the Parliament, paid tribute to His Majesty the late King Bhumibol Adulyadej, accentuating His Majesty's enormous contribution as the Development King and a soil scientist by practice.
On this occasion, Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn graciously conferred a video message for the World Soil Day event, stressing that joint efforts from all concerned sectors at the national, regional and international levels are required in order to address soil-related problems.
On the same occasion, H.E. Mr. Ban Ki-moon, Secretary-General of the United Nations, also conveyed a message, reiterating the importance of sustainable soil management which can contribute to the achievement of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development as well as the Paris Agreement on Climate Change.
The World Soil Day event was widely participated by representatives from governments, private sector, and civil society. There were fruitful and extensive exchanges of views and experiences during the panel discussion. Since this event coincides with the 2016 International Year of Pulses, FAO also launched a publication entitled Soils and Pulses: symbiosis for life at the event, aiming to increase the awareness on the importance of soils and pulses and the inextricable link between them.
On the same day, the Permanent Mission of the Kingdom of Thailand to the United Nations and FAO co-hosted a reception on the occasion of World Soil Day from 18.30 - 20.30 hrs. at the Lifetime Journey of the World's Development King exhibition area in the General Assembly Building. A number of Permanent Representatives and representatives from various countries as well as senior-level representatives from several UN agencies attended the reception.
Source: Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Kingdom of Thailand