Agricultural Investment


CSM Working Group on Agricultural Investment


  • Djibo Bagna – ROPPA
  • Javier Sanchez – LVC


  • Nico Verhagen – LVC
  • Shalmali Guttal – Focus on the Global South

Working Group email address:

CSO Working Group Members: List of Agricultural Investment WG members

*Please note that the list is updated approximately once every month, so if your name does not currently appear, it will be added shortly. If you wish to join the working group, please send an email to the CSM Secretariat and copy in the Coordinators.

This Working Group was established to focus on two main CFS issues:

  • 37th CFS Roundtable on “How to Increase Food Security and Small-holder sensitive Investment in Agriculture”
  • Open-ended Working Group for the development of Principles on Responsible Agricultural Investment

The CSM Working Group will continue to interface with the CFS process of consultation to develop “guidelines on responsible agricultural investment” (see below for full history).

WHY is it important to participate in the Agricultural Investment discussions in the CFS?

Final CFS Policy Outcomes:


In October 2010 during the 36th Session of the CFS, the CSO delegation successfully blocked endorsement of the “Principles for Responsible Agricultural Investment that Respects Rights, Livelihoods and Resources” (RAI), which were developed by the World Bank, UNCTAD, FAO and IFAD in 2009.

The Civil Society declaration during the Land Tenure Roundtable specifically stated:

“We call on the CFS to not endorse the Principles for Responsible Agricultural Investment that Respects Rights, Livelihoods and Resources (RAI): the RAI is not an adequate instrument to regulate private investment; moreover, RAI principles have been formulated through an exclusive process without the participation of communities and constituencies most affected by agricultural investments, especially private investments.  What is needed instead are nationally and internationally enforceable laws and public regulations on all investments pertaining to land, including provisions on extra-territorial obligations of states to regulate and make private companies accountable for their operations abroad.”

The Final document and decision box from the CFS Roundtable on Land Tenure, can be found HERE 

CSO messages developed during the 2010 Annual CSM Forum, just prior to the CFS session can be found HERE

In October 2011 during the 37th Session of the CFS, the Committee agreed to the following:

“v.iii. Supports launching an inclusive consultation process within the CFS for the development and the broader ownership of principles for responsible agricultural investment that enhance food security and nutrition to be overseen by the CFS Bureau with the assistance of the joint Secretariat and in close collaboration with the Advisory Group and the involvement of all interested stakeholders with a view to submitting these principles for the consideration of CFS.

  1. Acknowledges that the first step of this inclusive consultation process will be to find agreement on the scope, purpose, intended recipients and structure of these principles as well as on the format of the consultation process, taking into account existing frameworks – including the RAI principles developed by FAO, IFAD, UNCTAD and the World Bank – and respecting the need to maintain full coherence and avoid duplication with the Voluntary Guidelines on Responsible Governance of Tenure of Land and other Natural Resources, which are expected to be approved prior to the start of this consultation process”

The full document can be found HERE 

CSO messages developed during the 2011 Annual CSM Forum, just prior to the CFS session can be found HERE 

The consultative process on RAI will involve two steps:

  1. The first step is aimed at developing the Terms of Reference (TOR) of the consultation (scope, purpose, intended recipients and structure of the principles as well as the format).
  2. The second step–once the TOR have been agreed—the consultation process will commence.

Provisional timeline:

Taks Timeframe
Zero Draft is discussed in Open Ended Working Group in Rome

23 & 24 September 2013

Regional and electronic consultations

(Pending availability of funds, consultations may not be held in all regions)

October 2013 – 15 March 2014
Endorsement of way forward at 40th Session of the CFS 7-11 October 2013
Release of Draft One 1 April 2014
Preliminary discussion on Draft One in OEWG 29 – 30 April 2014
Global meeting to be held in Rome to negotiate Final Version 19 – 23 May 2014
rai principles are endorsed at CFS 41 Plenary October 2014




Background Documents:  Agricultural investment_briefing_note

Phase 1: July 2 rai Workshop

Phase 1: July 25 rai Workshop

Phase 1: September 6 rai Workshop 

Phase 2: May OEWG & ZERO Draft.