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Cablegate: France Agricultural Biotech Outreach Proposal - Fy 2010

VZCZCXYZ0002
PP RUEHWEB

DE RUEHFR #1738 3560730
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 220730Z DEC 09
FM AMEMBASSY PARIS
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 7952
INFO RUEHBS/USEU BRUSSELS 2769
RUEHRC/USDA FAS WASHDC
RUEHBS/AMEMBASSY BRUSSELS 7143

UNCLAS PARIS 001738

STATE FOR EEB/TPP/MTAA/ABT - MARCELLA SZYMANSKI AND JACK BOBO

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: EAGR ECON TBIO ETRD KPAO FR
SUBJECT: FRANCE AGRICULTURAL BIOTECH OUTREACH PROPOSAL - FY 2010

REF: STATE 122732

1. Embassy Paris Country Team presents this request for support
from EEB FY 2010 biotech outreach funds for critical public outreach
in France. France remains an influential country both in the
European Union (EU) and worldwide, especially in francophone
developing countries. Post recognizes the discrepancy between
France's high level commitment to development objectives,
particularly in Africa, and its negative role regarding biotech
development, which has impact beyond the EU. A clear indication of
France's commitment in world food security policy is the recent
election of Luc Guyau as the new President of the FAO Council. Mr.
Guyau was previously President of the French Association of the
Chambers of Agriculture, and former President of the leading French
farmers union, FNSEA.

2. The proposed program for a U.S. speaker is based on the
successful visit of Dr. Claude Fauquet under an EEB Bureau grant in
FY 2009. This Franco-American researcher, Director of the
International Laboratory of Tropical Agricultural Biotechnology
(ILTAB) at the Danforth Plant Science Center in Saint-Louis,
Missouri, visited Paris on June 15-17, 2009.

3. The speaker was selected based on previous successful programs,
including the organization and partial State Department funding for
travel to the United States by Dr. Marc Fellous, and of biotech
outreach program speaker, Dr. Martina Newell-McGoughlin, in 2008.
Both Fellous and McGoughlin suggested Dr. Fauquet as a speaker.

4. Post recommends Dr. Fauquet be selected again as the FY-2010
biotech outreach speaker, as his visit in 2009 was a success. The
linkage of development and food security with biotechnology proved
to have an impact with the French audiences. We have not succeeded
previously in linking agricultural development with biotech, despite
our efforts. This allowed Post to attract new audiences on the
biotech issue. An editorial published in La France Agricole weekly
magazine in June 2009 illustrated Dr. Fauquet's impacton the French
audience. The author of this editorial was Philippe Pavard, and an
International Visitor alumnus. The speaker's profile was perfect
for addressing sensitive topics, given his French background,
education, professional experience and language. Moreover, Dr.
Fauquet's approach to biotechnology for food security was
compelling, given his research and application experience over years
in Africa, and the fact that this work was being done under the
auspices of a non-profit organization.

5. Post estimates travel cost at USD 6,500 for a total of 5 days in
March 2010, including 3 days in Paris, 1 day in Montpellier, and 1
day in Brussels, Belgium. This timing would allow Dr. Fauquet to
have a large audience (including media coverage) during the annual
international agricultural show held in Paris. Targeted audience
would include journalists from both popular and agricultural press
(to widen Dr. Fauquet press audience from 2009, when only
agricultural press was met); the various French government
ministries involved in agriculture, development and technology
(while in 2009, only French Ministry of Agriculture representatives
were available to meet with Dr. Fauquet); key stakeholders in the
development and food security domains in French and international
organizations including Paris-based OECD and French FAO members; and
researchers and students in Universities focusing in agriculture,
development and food security.

6. The US Mission to the European Union has cleared this message
and also supports the request. USEU will program Dr. Fauquet for
meetings with contacts at the EU Institutions.

RIVKIN

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