Director-General of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations

Dr Qu Dongyu, who took office on 1 August 2019 as Director-General of FAO, fully engaging with how to eradicate hunger worldwide.

Born in 1963 in Hunan Province, China, Qu studied horticultural science at Hunan Agricultural University and then plant breeding and genetics at the graduate school , CAAS. He later added a PhD on agriculture and environmental science at Wageningen University, in the Netherlands.

Before coming to FAO, Qu served as China’s Vice Minister of Agriculture and Rural Affairs, where one of his achievements was to promote inclusive and innovative development and make sure information and communication technologies (ICT) were available in rural areas so that more than 400 million farmers could use their smartphones as a new farming tool. That vision has been consistent across a professional career that includes periods in central and local government, in and leading research institutes, and as a human resources leader at the China Three Gorges Project Development Corporation (the largest green energy Co in the world). Among his national initiatives has been to improve marketing mechanism for agricultural products in China and foster the establishment of national specialty production areas geared to making local comparative advantages work to the benefit of local farmers. As Vice Governor of Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region, one of China’s landlocked and poorest areas, Qu formulated action plans aimed at poverty reduction, women empowerment, youth startups, agritourism and solidarity between ethnic groups.

Qu says he represents the combination of an “Asian soul” and a “global mind”. Recognized for scientific innovation as a young scholar, Qu has for 30 years been involved in international exchanges and orchestrated major events including the World Potato Congress, the International Rice Congress and the International Conference on Plant Protection, and participated in multilateral initiatives such as the World Trade Organization and the G20 as well as numerous bilateral initiatives involving Asia, Africa and Latin America. He has also directly helped design flagship South-South Cooperation projects with FAO and the World Bank. As the DG of FAO, Qu makes the full range of his efforts to build a dynamic, open, transparent and deliverable FAO for a better world, with transformation of agri-food systems and successful achievement of the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development Goals.