Mountain regions cover 66% of Switzerland and 24% of the world’s land mass. They are home to 13% of the world’s population, the majority of whom live in poverty and whose food security is under threat. International governance of mountain regions is relevant because mountain regions often cross national borders and because their ecosystem services also benefit distant areas.
The Mountain Partnership is an alliance of states, international organisations and NGOs, which work together to achieve sustainable conservation of mountainous regions and to improve living conditions for mountain peoples. The Swiss Federal Office for Agriculture (FOAG) supports the Mountain Partnership secretariat, which is based at the FAO in Rome. One of the secretariat’s main tasks is to assist the various members in implementing joint initiatives in the area of sustainable mountain development and to foster their co-operation.
The Mountain Partnership serves as a platform for members, gathering, generating and sharing knowledge and relevant information to increase awareness of mountain themes. It also promotes relations and co-operation between different actors by acting as intermediary and lays down conditions for collaboration and resource mobilisation at national, regional and global level.
The Mountain Partnership aims to gather practical information gained through implementation of the Mountain Agenda and to draw up recommendations for concrete political measures to strengthen mountain regions. Furthermore, the Mountain Partnership also aims to raise global awareness and deepen the commitment of the international community to promote sustainable mountain development.