PRRI MOP7 Opening Statement
Thank you Chairman,
I speak on behalf of the Public Research and Regulation Initiative, PRRI.
PRRI is a worldwide organisation of public researchers involved in biotechnology for the common good.
We congratulate you with your election as MOP Chair and we thank the Government and people of Korea for their warm hospitality.
Mr. Chairman, PRRI has always been a great supporter of the idea behind the Biosafety Protocol as it is laid down in its mother treaty, the Convention on Biological Diversity.
Article 16 of the Convention underlines that transfer of technology, whereby biotechnologies are explicitly mentioned, is essential to the attainment of the goals of the Convention.
Article 19 of the Convention instructs that the Parties shall promote priority access to the benefits arising from biotechnologies, especially for developing countries.
To facilitate such technology transfer, the third paragraph of article 19 instructs the Parties to consider he need for a protocol. This instruction resulted in 2000 in the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety.
The Biosafety Protocol reflects this background in its Preamble, which states that modern biotechnology has great potential for human well-being if developed and used with adequate safety measures.
Mr. Chairman, we believe that the Biosafety Protocol can indeed contribute to the conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity through facilitation of responsible technology transfer.
PRRI is here to actively contribute to the discussions as to how the Protocol can be strengthened to facilitate responsible technology transfer.
To this end, PRRI held a side event on the first day in which we illustrated the importance of modern biotechnology, shared experiences on GM crops developed by the public research sector, as well as some of the challenges, such as misconceptions – and indeed misrepresentations – of facts surrounding biotechnology and biosafety. The presentations of that side event are available on the PRI website.
Thank you Mr. Chairman