Survey on Biotechnology Capacity in Asia-Pacific

The Survey on Biotechnology Capacity in Asia-Pacific: Opportunities for National Initiatives and Regional Cooperation, authored by Sachin Chaturvedi Krishna and Ravi Srinivas, was recently published by UNESCO, Jakarta. 

According to the authors, the report “maps the contours and directions of biotechnology development in the Asia-Pacific region, identifies the strengths and weaknesses and suggests measures to be taken by governments, donors, multilateral and UN agencies and industry, in order to ensure that the region benefits most from biotechnology.”

The document analyzes the state of biotechnology development in the following countries:  Australia, Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Lao, Malaysia, Nepal, New Zealand, Pakistan, Philippines, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Thailand and Vietnam.  Its key recommendations are:

* Take measures including adequate financial support, to enhance the productivity of the National Innovation Systems;
* Perform Technology Assessments taking into account the resources, structural constraints and capacity to innovate and engage in advanced research in biotechnology;
* Promote South-South co-operation for wider diffusion of biotechnology;
* Develop regional networks in biotechnology so that technological gap among countries can be minimized;
* More support from multilateral agencies, including UN agencies, in identifying needs, strengthening institutional capacity, developing regulatory regimes and enhancing capacity of National Agricultural Research Systems’  in biotechnology;
* Encourage growth of Small and Medium Enterprises in biotechnology and promote biotechnology entrepreneurship;
* Regional co-operation for implementation of regulatory regimes to be encouraged;
* Provide a supporting framework through funding for infrastructure, investment in human resources development;
* Promote commercialization of research by universities and research institutes, and Public-Private Partnerships in biotechnology, taking into account the access to knowledge and the need to balance public and private interests.

The full report can be downloaded from here.

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