Maria Helena Semedo

FAO Deputy Director-General

Maria Helena Semedo is Deputy Director General of Natural Resources of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). She coordinates the work of three departments, agriculture, fisheries and forestry, and two natural resources divisions. Ms. Semedo considers it important to employ a multi-sectoral and holistic approach to fight malnutrition and food insecurity. She believes agriculture represents an important part of the solution to climate change, but it necessitates the creation of an enabling environment for innovation and a platform where countries can exchange best practices. 

Ms. Semedo has held various ministry positions in her home country Cape Verde, including Minister for Fisheries, Agriculture and Rural Affairs and Minster for Marine Affairs.

Maria has worked at FAO since 2003, starting as FAO Representative in Niger. Before appointed Deputy Director General she served as FAO Assistant Director-General/Regional Representative for Africa.