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close this bookGATE - 4/93 - Botswana: Rural Industrial Development (GTZ GATE, 1993, 48 p.)
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AT Activities

European AT Question-and-Answer Services:
Better Information on Food Processing

Eschborn - The food processing sector was the subject of a workshop organized by GATE/ISAT at the beginning of November. It was attended by five West European question-and-answer services active in the field of A-T GRET/TPA (France), ITDG (UK), SKAT (Switzerland), and TOOL (The Netherlands) and GATE/ISAT. The main aims of the workshop were to improve coordination of activities and to seek a more efficient way of answering enquiries from Africa, Asia and Latin America.

GATE/ISAT was represented by Rudolf Kiessling. He is responsible for on-farm processing and for the West and Central African regions. GATE's internal AT demand study, conducted in 1991, was presented to the participants and taken as a basis for an analysis of the latest technical and regional trends in the food technology sector. Great interest was also shown in the presentation of the 'clipper' data processing system. For the past year, all enquiries received at GATE/ISAT have been recorded and dealt with using this system.

GATE/ISAT is currently trying a new approach to intensifying contacts with the South. It is planned to set up a 'clearing house' for this purpose. At the instigation of GATE/ISAT, this office is to be opened in Ouagadougou (Burkina Faso) in the near future. The institution will support the work of an increasing number of NGOs in West Africa by functioning as a contact partner for demand-oriented projects, and by procuring the necessary technological expertise (through South-South cooperation where possible).

As a result of the workshop in Eschborn, cooperation among West European question-and-answer services will be further intensified. In the coming months substantial progress may be expected on some of the activities begun in 1993:

- foundation meeting of the West African NGOs to set up the clearing house mentioned above in December 1993 (with the assistance of GATE/ISAT);

- evaluation of questionnaires completed by European AT question-and-answer services (to be done by TOOL);

- comparison of key technical and geographical sectors within the information services involved in food processing (to be done by ITDG).

The intermediate or final results of these activities will be integrated into the next meetings, to be organized in January 1994 by GATE/ISAT in Eschborn and in April 1994 by TOOL in Amsterdam.

The contact addresses of the information services mentioned above are:

GATE/ISAT
Postfach 5180
65726 Eschborn
Germany
Tel. (+49) 6196 79-0
Fax (+49) 6196 79-7352

(GRET/TPA
213 rue La Fayette
75010 Paris
France
Tel. (+33) 1-40351314
Fax (+33) 1-40350839

ITDG
Myson House, Railway Terrace
Rugby CV21 3HT
United Kingdom
Tel (+44) 788-560631
Fax (+44) 788-540270

SKAT
Vadianstrasse 42
9()()0 St Gallen
Switzerland
Tel (+41) 71-237475
Fax (+41) 71-257545

TOOL
Sarphatistraat 650
1018 AV Amsterdam
The Netherlands
Tel. (+31)20-6264409
Fax (+31) 20-6277489

AT-Forum: Strengthening of Extension Services in Developing Countries

Eschborn - "Strengthening and expansion of extension capacities in developing countries" was one of the topics discussed by the AT-Forum NGO-GTZ aat a meeting held in Eschborn in September. Other points covered included improved information interchange among the member organizations, criteria for admitting new members, an index of AT experts, and a response to xenophobia in Germany.

With regard to extension services in developing countries, it is important above all to qualify counterparts in the South adequately. This was the conclusion reached by an AT-Forum working group following a review which established that all the member organizations provide extension services. Overlapping cooperation networks could result in first steps towards establishing a competent advisory structure. Postharvest technologies were considered as a potential sectoral focus, and the Andean countries were suggested as a possible region. Experience in this area is to be collected and evaluated at a conference in February 1994. Afterwards it is planned to hold a field workshop at which both extension officers and local advisers can exchange experience and coordinate further action.

AT-Forum's Information Network working group reported that public relations lobbying and exchange of project experience were emerging as the key areas of its work. The working group is planning a newsletter due to appear for the first time early in 1994. At first it will be available only to AT-Forum's members, but later other organizations will also be able to order it. To facilitate exchange of project experience, the working group plans to compile a catalogue containing selected key data on projects implemented by AT-Forum's members.

The members agreed not to establish any fixed criteria for admitting new organizations, but to decide on a case-to-case basis. However, assessments wild continue to be based primarily on applicant organizations' main areas of activity in development cooperation and how well known they are.

The members of AT-Forum also view the continuing series of attacks on foreign nationals in Germany with concern. As a "small contribution" towards reversing this trend they decided to publish statements condemning hostility to foreigners in Germany in a special section of this issue of gate.