Waste Less To Feed More

In this photo taken Tuesday, May 1, 2012, Indian farmers and migrant laborers harvest wheat crop on the outskirts of Amritsar, India. [AP File Photo]

About the Author: Robert D. Hormats serves as Under Secretary of State for Economic Growth, Energy, and the Environment.

I recently spoke at the 13th annual Delhi Sustainable Development Summit in New Delhi, India. My remarks focused largely on the importance of creating a good environment for investment in the agricultural sector. I emphasized the particular need to improve food supply chains that connect farmers to markets. Significant additional improvements in food supply chain infrastructure are needed to reduce post-harvest food losses, which are disturbingly high in many parts of the world.

Some important progress already has been made. The Government of India recently took steps to open India’s multi-brand retail sector to encourage foreign direct investment. This investment is critical for India’s overall economic growth prospects as well as the development of India’s food storage and distribution industry. As Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh explained, an organized and efficient… more »

Wildlife and Foreign Policy: What’s the Connection?

Under Secretary of State Robert D. Hormats poses for a photograph with members of a wildlife conservancy in Namibia, 2012. [State Department photo/ Public Domain]

About the Author: Robert D. Hormats serves as Under Secretary of State for Economic Growth, Energy, and the Environment.

Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton hosted a discussion this morning with foreign diplomats, government officials, civil society leaders, and business representatives on illegal wildlife trafficking and animal conservation. Protection of endangered species such as elephants, rhinos, and tigers do not immediately conjure up images of diplomacy in action. So it’s fair to ask why the Secretary of State is interested in wildlife and convening this high-level meeting. The answer is multifaceted and has broad foreign policy implications.

The U.S. Department of State has a long and proud history in supporting wildlife conservation. In 1916, then-Secretary of State Robert Lansing signed with his British counterpart (representing Canada) a treaty to protect birds that migrate between…more »

Ensuring a Sound Basis for Global Competition: Competitive Neutrality
Containers are loaded onto vessels at the Port of Miami, 2010. [AP File Photo]

About the Author: Robert D. Hormats serves as Under Secretary of State for Economic, Energy and Agricultural Affairs.

Over the decade and a half after the fall of the Berlin Wall, and creation of the World Trade Organization, the world economy experienced one of the fastest periods of growth since World War II. Access to new markets, accelerating international investment, innovation, and entrepreneurship characterized the evolution of a “global” economy.

During this period, American, European, and Japanese global companies prospered. Their success inspired emulation in surprising and unexpected ways. A near-universal acceptance emerged that open markets and private investment were the key to economic growth and development.

How effective governments and business took advantage of opportunities provided by globalization was a central factor in determining success in sustaining economic growth and innovation during this period. Developing and… more »