The White House
Office of the Press Secretary
Remarks by the President at Symposium on Global Agriculture and Food Security
Ronald Reagan Building
10:08 A.M. EDT
THE PRESIDENT: Thank you so much. (Applause.) Thank you, everybody. Please have a seat. Thank you. Well, good morning, everybody. Thank you, Catherine Bertini, and Dan Glickman and everyone at the Chicago Council. We were originally going to convene, along with the G8, in Chicago. But since we’re not doing this in my hometown, I wanted to bring a little bit of Chicago to Washington. (Laughter.) It is wonderful to see all of you. It is great to see quite a few young people here as well. And I want to acknowledge a good friend. We were just talking backstage -- he was my inspiration for singing at the Apollo -- (laughter) -- Bono is here, and it is good to see him. (Applause.)
Now, this weekend at the G8, we’ll be represented by many of the world's largest economies. We face urgent challenges -- creating jobs, addressing the situation in the eurozone, sustaining the global economic recovery. But even as we deal with these issues, I felt it was also important, also critical to focus on the urgent challenge that confronts some 1 billion men, women and children around the world -- the injustice of chronic hunger; the need for long-term food security.
So tomorrow at the G8, we’re going to devote a special session to this challenge. We’re launching a major new partnership to reduce hunger and lift tens of millions of people from poverty. And we’ll be joined by leaders from across Africa, including the first three nations to undertake this effort and who join us here today -- I want to acknowledge them: Prime Minister Meles of Ethiopia -- (applause) -- President Mills of Ghana -- (applause) -- and President Kikwete of Tanzania. (Applause.) Welcome.