National Biosafety Committee should be further strengthened for better coordination among provinces: Zahid

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APP19-06 ISLAMABAD: April 06 - Federal Minister For Climate Change Zahid Hamid along with Federal Minister For National Food Security & Research, Sikandar Hayat Khan Bosan chairing a meeting on Stakholders Consultations on Bio-Safety. APP

ISLAMABAD, April 6 (APP): Federal Minister for Climate Change

Zahid Hamid on Thursday emphasized the strengthening and synchronizing the
National Biosafety committee for the better coordination among
provinces to make it more effective.
Federal Minister for Climate Change Zahid Hamid was chairing a consultative meeting with all stakeholders on Biosafety
Regulatory Framework in Pakistan, along with Federal Minister for
National Food Security and Resources Sikander Bosan here.
Minister was informed that Technical Bio-safety Committee
formulated under National Bio-safety Committee has already been
revised by including provincial technical experts, a press release
issued here said.
The stakeholders discussed to have better coordination. What
are effects of Genetically Modified Organism on health of human
beings and animals? How to improve current biosafety framework?
It was agreed in the meeting that GMOs is a federal subject due to
two reasons.
The import export is dealt at federal level and Pakistan is
signatory to Cartagena Convention. The implementation of
international conventions and agreements are also under federal
laws.
Pakistan is party to the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety
(CPB) to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) since May
31, 2009.
The setup of implementation system in the country was
mandatory to regulate Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) and
their products related activities.
National Biosafety Centre was established in Pakistan
Environmental Protection Agency (Pak-EPA), Ministry of Environment
(defunct) in April, 2006 to meet the obligations of CPB.
Pakistan Biosafety Rules, 2005 had been devised under Pakistan
Environmental Protection Act, 1997 (PEPA, 1997) and notified by
Pak-EPA (Ministry of Environment) to regulate GMOs and their
products.
National Biosafety Guidelines, 2005 were developed and
notified to explain the procedures and protocols to the
applicants.
National Biosafety Centre (NBC) provides the
secretariat support to the Biosafety committees; National
Biosafety Committee (NBC; headed by Secretary, Ministry of Climate
Change, Technical Advisory Committee (TAC); headed by Director
General, Pak-EPA and Institutional Biosafety Committee (IBCs).
The meeting was attended by the representatives of Ministry
of Commerce, EPA-AJK, Sustainable Development Policy Institute,
Environment Department, Baluchistan, Pakistan agriculture Research
Council, Ministry of Law and Justice, EPA-KPK, National Institute
of Health, Ministry of National Food Security and Resources,
Ministry of Climate Change.