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Crop Biotech Update

Philippines Celebrates 7th National Biotechnology Week

November 25, 2011

The Philippine Environment Secretary and a senator affirmed the important role of biotech for the development of the country's environment and agriculture during the opening of the 7th National Biotechnology Week at the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, Quezon City, last November 21, 2011.

Environment Secretary Ramon Jesus P. Paje said in his opening message that biotechnology "is a very potent force" in developing the country's resources. He reported that products of biotechnology have been utilized to enhance the National Greening Program of the country through partnering with state universities and colleges. He also informed that the President considered the National Greening Program will not just be an environmental program, but also a poverty reduction and food security program.

Meanwhile, Keynote Speaker Senator Edgardo J. Angara and Chairman of the Committee on Science and Technology (COMSTE) expressed his view about the development of modern technologies, including biotechnology, and intensification of agriculture. He cited the success story of Bt corn, without which, he said, the livestock industry would not thrive. He also stressed the need to intensify research and development and biotech research particularly for food as this would be the hottest issue in the next decade.

Learning events such as fora, symposium, film showing, exhibits, and a contest for cartoonists, among others, were organized by the various partner government and non-government institutions. Through Presidential Proclamation 1414 issued in 2007, the last week of November was declared as the National Biotechnology Week.

For more information about the 7th Philippine National Biotechnology Week, visit SEARCA BIC website http://www.bic.searca.org or e-mail bic@agri.searca.org.