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Biotechnology for Sustainable Development
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  1. Biotechnology for Sustainable Development Paper submitted to UNECA December 2011

  2. Terms of Reference • Critical review and analysis of the contribution of biotechnology to poverty reduction and sustainable growth and development in Africa Main tasks • Review progress, concrete actions and achievements in the implementation of sustainable commitments related to biotechnology • Agenda 21 • Plan for Further Implementation of Agenda 21 (PFIA21) • Johannesburg Plan of Implementation (JPOI) • Document constraints/challenges and opportunities as well as new and emerging issues • Formulate policy recommendations aimed at enhancing sustainable management of biotechnology and its contribution to sustainable growth and development

  3. Structure of the paper • Paper is divided into 7 sections • Introduction and background • Review of biotechnology R and D and case studies • Analysis of policy and legal environment • Technology transfer initiatives • Public participation mechanisms • Challenges and lessons learnt • Recommendations and conclusion

  4. Contextualizing biotechnology and sustainable development • According to WCED 1987 sustainable development comprises economic, social and enviro. Protection pillars • Paradigm that has informed and defined development goals, strategies & policies over the years at various levels • The role of science, technology and innovation in poverty alleviation and sustainable development in Africa has been underscored in line with MDGs • World Bank and FAO study (IAASTD)-underscored the importance of STI in agricultural development • Fundamental importance of the sector- 29% GDP and over 60% of the population depend on agriculture for livelihoods

  5. Contextualizing biotechnology and sustainable development • Comparatively slow pace of development in Africa has been attributed to inability to harness science and technology • African political leaders have taken measures to promote STI as evidenced by • AMCOST (Africa Ministerial Council on Science and Technology) to spearhead policies and priorities in STI • Establishment of CAADP- pillar 4 focus on dissemination of appropriate new technologies such as biotechnology • Biotechnology and sustainable development interface- Agenda 21 (UNCED 1992 action plan on sustainable development) recognizes the role of biotechnology in health care, food security, forestry and industrial applications (chapter 16)

  6. Biotech R and D in Africa • Progress can be categorized in 3 clusters of countries