A further challenge to the development assistance flows from the donor community was posed by the highly in - creased migration of refugees to Europe in 2015. While recognising the positive role ARD plays in combating the reasons for migration, many European countries opted to re-locate ODA assigned budget to migrants support, integration and administration. Donor agencies agree that in the framework of Agenda 2030 even more funds should be transferred to migration countries. The members of the Platform, as well as the international community as a whole, agreed that a higher level of donor coordination and exchange will be required to sustainably address the complicated sustainable development agenda and the challenges to agriculture and rural development in order to achieve measurable positive development on migration and economic development.
It is certain that agriculture and rural development (ARD) constitute highly complex systems and need long-term support. Calling for more sustainability in development by the SDGs challenges the cooperation between new actors such as the trade community or the climate change community, each introducing new approaches, new understanding and a requiring of a profound debate between all partners to achieve joint action towards rural transformation. The Platform’s Strategic Initiative Agenda 2030 addressed these new dimensions of development cooperation. The Platform analysis of SDG 2 on food security and SDG 8 on economic growth and the following debate exemplified the need to define new pathways towards rural transformation considering job creation, trade with value chain development and inclusive agribusiness and new opportunities deriving from rapid urbanisation. However, not every development issue can be a policy priority and the ARD community needs to understand which low hanging fruits are ready to be picked to build a more comprehensive approach to sustainable development of the rural space.