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Online Forum on the Implementation of the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety

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Topic 2:Strategies and approaches for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans [#6093]
Issues of integration and synergies are most of the times easier said than done. The benefits are substantial once integration and synergies  are accomplished. Challenges are however, are always making it very difficult if not impossible to accomplish these. It is therefore important that one needs to be very innovative in identifying strategies and approaches for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and National Development Plans so as to maximise success and minimise challenges. Can you therefore share with the group your experiences and information:
1. In what way and with what specific tools, processes and mechanisms has your governments integrated biosafety considerations into NBSAPs and national development plans?
2. What are some of the potential entry points for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans?
3. What additional tools could be developed to assist in designing interventions for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans which are likely to be highly effective and have the desired impact?
4. What indicators could be used to monitor progress and evaluate the success of mainstreaming biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans?
posted on 2014-05-26 23:09 UTC by Ms. Malta Qwathekana, South Africa
RE: Topic 2:Strategies and approaches for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans [#6097]
Dear all,
I believe strategies and approaches for integrating biosafety into the NBSAPs and national development plan is similar to what we have done to mainstreaming NBSAP into the the national development plan and other sectorial plans.

With reference to the questions posted by fellow participant from South Africa, I am pleased to share some experiences I have since I have gone through handling 3 action plans developments: NSBAP, NCSA and Action Plan for Biosafety and Modern Biotechnology.

1. In what way and with what specific tools, processes and mechanisms has your governments integrated biosafety considerations into NBSAPs and national development plans?

- Used to communicate with right agency to identify areas of priority to be put in the national development plan;
- NBSAP used the review existing plan to be included into the NBSAP;
- Consultation, meeting and workshop have been used to allow stakeholders to express their priority areas or validate what have been compiled.

2. What are some of the potential entry points for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans?

- public awareness on CPB;
- capacity building for risk assessment of LMOs;
- formal education; and
- develop code of ethic for LMOs application.

3. What additional tools could be developed to assist in designing interventions for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans which are likely to be highly effective and have the desired impact?

- Look at areas applicable in the country rather than embrace all in the CPB;
- follow MOP decision as much as possible.

4. What indicators could be used to monitor progress and evaluate the success of mainstreaming biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans?

- functioning curriculum on biosafety at high school;
- functioning risk assessment institution;
- awareness increased among government officials, farmers and users;
- biosafety issue is in the government pipeline for budging.

Pisey Oum, Cambodia/MOE
posted on 2014-05-27 02:55 UTC by Mr. Meng Monyrak, Cambodia
RE: Topic 2:Strategies and approaches for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans [#6105]
Thanks to the colleague from Cambodia for sharing this wonderful information. Mainstreaming biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans should be done in conjunction with awareness raising, capacity building and getting the political will on biosafety issues so that the implementation of the CPB MOP decisions is set as one of the national priorities and hence provided for in the national budgets. Any views on this and how it can be done what capacity needs, awareness on what and who the major target audiences/groups should be? Cambodia made mention of some of the key once.
posted on 2014-05-27 16:07 UTC by Ms. Malta Qwathekana, South Africa
RE: Topic 2:Strategies and approaches for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans [#6114]
Thank you Malta. Let be clear to the issue, public awareness and capacity building for CBD and CPB is different. Public awareness and capacity building for CBD requires simple demonstration to the public and communities while for CPB it implores more cost and simplifying scientific knowledge for public and communities. On the contrary, in most LDCs GEF fund allocation is much dedicated to Biodiversity and event sometimes for biosafety is Zero.
Your question how should this two themes can be synergized? It requires a consensus among policy makers, political will in order to mainstream one another. At this time, I think some countries in the region have established a separate institution for biosafety and biodiversity. But both are relevant in a sense conserving species and genetic resources.
Capacity building for biosafety involves more private sector, farmers and consumers while biodiversity needs to strengthen capacity communities, institution and a systemic level. Bot requires financial capacity. To have a share cost, we need private land holders to participate in the program of public awareness. We need to protect species, companies need reputation, what the balance, and tradeoff?

Pisey Oum, Cambodia/MOE
Any views on this and how it can be done what capacity needs, awareness on what and who the major target audiences/groups should be? Cambodia made mention of some of the key once.
posted on 2014-05-28 04:28 UTC by Mr. Meng Monyrak, Cambodia
RE: Topic 2:Strategies and approaches for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans [#6116]
Dear all,
I am Letchumanan Ramatha from the Depertment of Biosafety, Malaysia. My views on the subject matter is:

1. In what way and with what specific tools, processes and mechanisms has your governments integrated biosafety considerations into NBSAPs and national development plans?

The Development of Biotechnology including Modern Biotechnology has been identified as an important driver of our economy. As the progress of modern biotech will require a regulatory process – Biosafety has found its place in the National Development Plan though not on an equal footing with Biotechnology.

2. What are some of the potential entry points for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans?

A biosafety law must be in place.
This is useful in 2 ways. One is to regulate safe use of GMO. Second is to safeguard biodiversity resources in our protected areas from genetic pollution. Whichever position a country may give priority to between the two – that position will be integrated in the national development plan by means of strengthening the enforcement/implementation of Biosafety Laws.

3. What additional tools could be developed to assist in designing interventions for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans which are likely to be highly effective and have the desired impact?

I think the basic matter is to develop heightened awareness on biosafety. Until there is a minimal level of awareness on biosafety among the policy makers nothing happens. Thus policy makers and relevant enforcement agencies must be well informed on current biosafety issues. This can be done regularly during e.g. meeting, seminar or workshop. Also we have a national council for biodiversity set up in 2011. Its members comprise of chief ministers from every state and several federal ministers. At its first meeting last year, we have reported to the council progress of the implementation of biosafety law. Similarly, we have to apply this concept to the Convention. Whatever decision or progress on any issues discussed during meeting of parties to the CPB should be reported to COP as for most countries, those attending COP are top level people who have influence on policy.

4. What indicators could be used to monitor progress and evaluate the success of mainstreaming biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans?

Mainstreaming biosafety may be difficult but integrating it into NBSAPs is a reality as there is very little awareness on the importance of biosafety or when it comes to mainstreaming there is competing interest from various sectors to be mainstreamed. To measure its real success will take a long time but within that we notice more agencies or institutions have identified biosafety as their concerns.
posted on 2014-05-28 07:24 UTC by Mr. Ramatha Letchumanan, Ministry of Natural Resources & Environment
RE: Topic 2:Strategies and approaches for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans [#6123]
Dear Ramatha
Thanks for sharing the Malaysian experiences, best practices and ideas. The mention of the importance of taking to the COP, I would assume, a message to the high level Segment particularly a statement by the Executive Secretary on whatever key decisions or progress on any issues discussed during the meeting of parties to the CPB since for most countries, Ministers and other high level representatives attend the COP and the High Level segment. This would be a wonderful idea. Are there any other suggestions from other participants on awareness raising and high profiling of the Biosafety issues? I also like and support the Malaysian idea of having a national council for Biodiversity. This is where the buy in of high level national principals is secured. Are there any similar forums in other countries? Please come forward and share with the group.

What also comes out very clearly from most participants in this online forum is the issue of awareness raising at various levels and simplification of scientific information and terminologies for various stakeholders in order to ensure a better understanding of biosafety issues.

Colleagues please come forward with your inputs, and your country experiences on strategies and approaches for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and National Development Plans.
posted on 2014-05-28 18:39 UTC by Ms. Malta Qwathekana, South Africa
RE: Topic 2:Strategies and approaches for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans [#6124]
Malta, I had just written a whole paragraph of ideas, on integrating biosafety into national plans, programs and policies and clicked Cancel instead of Continue and so lost everything. So here I go again.

Saint Lucia is currently preparing to sign a memorandum of understanding with the Centre for Food Security and Entrepreneuship of the Cave Hill Campus, University of the West Indies. Through this MOU, biosafety considerations will be mandated as the country seeks to develop products from modern biotechnology.  The country is in discussions at present to take conservation and sustainable use of its biodiversity to new vistas.  Biosafety will be included in the activities as the country seeks to protect its biodiversity from the possible negative impacts of living modified organisms. The Ministry of Agriculture is preparing to do genetic characterisation of existing banana plants to help address the problem of the Black Sigatoka disease currently plaguing the island.  We understand that the equipment to be used to carry out this study is the same that is needed for GMO detection.  Hence biosafety considerations will be married with this new venture.

As we can all see, all these developments are tied to enhancing the socio-economic development of the island.  I want to reiterate that a country cannot go wrong by using that strategy to integrate biosafety into national plans, programs and policies.  It would be hard for the political directorate to deny the place of biosafety in these ventures.
posted on 2014-05-28 19:14 UTC by Ms. Anita James, Saint Lucia
RE: Topic 2:Strategies and approaches for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans [#6126]
Dear Anita. I am sorry for the pain of having to re-write your comment. Thank you very much for this very useful input. I am sure other participants will learn a lot from what St Lucia is doing and has achieved. Your country's linking of the general implementation of the Convention's two objectives (Conservation and sustainable use) with Biosafety in terms of seeking to protect its biodiversity from the possible negative impacts of LMOs is quite fascinating considering the general view that in most situations the CPB has been completely disconnected from the mother convention (the CBD). Therefore these strategies and approaches, such as how St Lucia conducts its business on this regard need to be shared among Parties and other stakeholders so that they can be further replicated elsewhere or used to package capacity building initiatives to enhance synergies and successful implementation of the CPB.
Thank you very much Anita for sharing this information with us. Any other ideas Colleagues?
posted on 2014-05-28 19:48 UTC by Ms. Malta Qwathekana, South Africa
RE: Topic 2:Strategies and approaches for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans [#6146]
Several strategic approaches have been highly useful in Cameroons efforts at integrating  biosafety in NBSAPs and other develop plans.  

Although the Law deals with biotechnological issues, a current comprehensive approach is being adopted in dealing with biosafety issues.  Living modified organisms are addressed alongside introduced or native invasive species which both constitute biological invaders.  A strong link is established between modified organisms and biodiversity.

Dealing with biological invaders demands a multidisciplinary approach and buy in from key sectors and this has been established through the National Biosafety Advisory Committee with the mandate to advise on and monitor the biosafety issues.  The multisectoral character of this organ has been very critical in ensuring the buy in of various sectors and the involvement of relevant sectors including the private sector.                

An innovative approach in the management of the on-going biosafety project is the Co-management option for each component of the project. The Ministry of Environment responsible for the project has, through a memorandum of understanding with key sectors, set up Task forces that are seated in the office of the participating partner ministries.   These technical bodies are co-headed by MINEPDED with a member of the participating ministry.  The trend observed is that Biodiversity focal persons in these ministries including the Ministry of Agriculture, the Ministry of Scientific Research, the Ministry of Higher Education (responsible for the research centres and Universities) etc…have equally been designated the biosafety focal persons to manage these task forces

Through this approach, key sectors are collectively involved in handling requests, carrying out joint controls and follow up actions especially in the field trial for introductions of LMOs in the cotton industry

Actors not directly involved in these key organs have been involved through consultative  processes.  These consultations have also focused on actors with the mandate for decision making on biodiversity issues.

Cameroons NBSAP II pasted on the CBD portal provides for Indicators developed in a general manner for all Targets which include the biosecurity relevant targets.
posted on 2014-06-04 22:09 UTC by Mrs. Prudence Tangham Galega, Cameroon
RE: Topic 2:Strategies and approaches for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans [#6153]
Thank you very much Prudence once again for sharing these wonderful experiences and progress made by Cameroon.
Colleagues it would be appreciated if other countries can also share their own experiences as we are closing the discussions on the 7th of June. Don't be left out let your country's voice be added
posted on 2014-06-05 10:30 UTC by Ms. Malta Qwathekana, South Africa
RE: Topic 2:Strategies and approaches for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans [#6157]
Hello everybody again. Regarding the topic 2 I can say that all kinds of activities, certainly, are aimed at implementation of Belarus obligations under the Cartagena Protocol. On 26 December 2012 the Minister of Natural Resources and Environmental Protection approved “The Strategic Plan of Implementation of the Cartagena Protocol by the Republic of Belarus for 2013 – 2020”. This plan includes some important areas which activities should be focused on. The issue of public participation in the decision-making process in regard to GMO is one of the most important issues where legal mechanisms must be improved.
      The activities under that Strategic Plan will not be successful if the Government does not provide the financial support for their realization. The Institute of Genetics and Cytology at the National Academy of Sciences of Belarus (IGC) included most of the activities mentioned in the Strategic Plan into its Plan of Scientific and Social-and-Economic Activities for 2013 - -2020.   
      It was mentioned already in the Topic 1, NCBC continues its participation in the Biosafety Clearing-House and also aims at improvement of its national and international activities in the field of public awareness and education on biosafety issues in accordance with both the IGC Plan of Scientific and Social-and-Economic Activities for 2013 – 2020 and the Strategic Plan of the Cartagena Protocol implementation.
posted on 2014-06-06 07:51 UTC by Assoc. Prof. Elena Makeyeva, Belarus
RE: Topic 2:Strategies and approaches for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans [#6163]
Dear Prof. Thank you very much for sharing with the group experiences and success stories from Belarus. Quite exciting. How has the processes of implementing the Cartagena Protocol been integrated to the NBSAP? If possible can you please share with the group what strategies and approaches have been used to achieve this. There are financing mechanisms such as the GEF, has collaborating with the general CBD implementation, if any, resulted in sourcing funda from GEF for the implementation of the Cartagena Protocol?

Regards
posted on 2014-06-09 13:14 UTC by Ms. Malta Qwathekana, South Africa
RE: Topic 2:Strategies and approaches for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans [#6168]
As mentioned before, right now the new NBSAP is searching for funds so it can be developed and during this process it could be possible to include in a broader sense the biosafety topic, but previously a deeper discussion about biosafety and biotechnology should take place in Bolivia.
posted on 2014-06-11 22:03 UTC by Sra. Cecilia Gonzalez, Bolivia (Plurinational State of)
RE: Topic 2:Strategies and approaches for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans [#6177]
Dear All,

When discussion on the strategies and approaches of how to integrate biosafety into NBSAP, we should be aware of the general conceptual approach that is applied for biodiversity srtategic planning - national actions toward the AICHI Targets. This approach should be also applied to identify appropriate biosafety activities that are relevant and efficient to meeting the AICHI targets in the country. The synergy between biosafety and biodiversity activities should be considered as one of important approach to achieve high efficiency and results.

Best regards,
Angela Lozan, MD
posted on 2014-06-12 17:44 UTC by Ms. Angela Lozan, Republic of Moldova
RE: Topic 2:Strategies and approaches for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans [#6182]
In order to ensure that development of biotechnology does not lead to unforeseen adverse impacts, the National Environment Policy (NEP), 2006, National Biotechnology Strategy-II, 2014 and revised National Biodiversity Action Plan (NBAP), 2008 have identified the following action points for appropriate use of new technologies:

a) Review the regulatory processes for LMOs so that all relevant scientific knowledge is taken into account, and ecological, health, and economic concerns are adequately addressed.

b) Periodically review the National Bio-safety Guidelines, and Bio-safety Operations Manual to ensure that these are based on current scientific knowledge.

c) Ensure the conservation of bio-diversity and human health when dealing with LMOs in transboundary movement in a manner consistent with the multilateral Bio-safety Protocol.

d) Develop appropriate liability and redress mechanisms to internalize environmental costs and address economic concerns in case of any damage to biodiversity.

e) Building of national capacities and public awareness for biodiversity conservation specifically in the context of appropriate use of new technologies such as LMOs..
posted on 2014-06-13 09:49 UTC by Dr. Ranjini Warrier, India
RE: Topic 2:Strategies and approaches for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans [#6190]
Dear Cecilia

Thanks for sharing with the group the Bolivian experience. Much appreciated. Colleagues those who have not come online and added their country's experiences we still have few hours to go. Please login and share with us the wonderful work that your respective countries are doing so that other Parties can see how they can modify and replicate what you have share to improve their respective situations and circumstances with regard to the implementation of Biosafety.
Regards
Malta
posted on 2014-06-13 12:55 UTC by Ms. Malta Qwathekana, South Africa
RE: Topic 2:Strategies and approaches for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans [#6191]
I am the NFP for CP Pakistan. To my understanding NBSAPs are prepared in compliance to Article 6 of the Convention and do not cover GMOs/ LMO issues. From this discussion it appears that other Parties are addressing these issues under NBSAP. Do I understand correct?
Syed Mahmood Nasir
posted on 2014-06-13 14:33 UTC by Mr. Syed Mahmood Nasir, Pakistan
RE: Topic 2:Strategies and approaches for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans [#6197]
On behalf of Ivy Wellman (Defra)

The UK recognises biotechnology as a tool for stimulating economic growth. UK policy makers and Government recognise the importance of bio-diversity and bio-safety and measures protecting both have been in place for some time. We regularly review the evidence and work with key stakeholders to identify pragmatic and effective bio-safety measures which are appropriate to the UK.
posted on 2014-06-13 15:38 UTC by Mr. Andrew Bowers, UNEP/SCBD/Biosafety
RE: Topic 2:Strategies and approaches for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans [#6198]
On behalf of Ivy Wellman (Defra)

As the importance of bio-safety has been recognised in the UK for some time it is supported by specialised training programmes, qualifications and information and guidance supporting good practice is publically available on web-sites. It is necessary to recognise the important and positive socio-economic impacts the responsible and safe use of GM technology has the potential to deliver. This is reflected in the UK’s Biodiversity Strategy as it takes a broad view of ecosystems and their services. The inclusion of bio-safety in the UK’s Biodiversity Strategy will continue to take an holistic approach and use input from a range of specialisms.
posted on 2014-06-13 15:39 UTC by Mr. Andrew Bowers, UNEP/SCBD/Biosafety
RE: Topic 2:Strategies and approaches for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans [#6210]
Dear colleagues,
One important tool in our NBSAP  to ensure environmental sustainability is the conduct of environmental and social impact assessment. Our biosafety processes are very much aligned with  this. This has greatly assisted   in integrating biosafety into our NBSAP

Regards,

Johansen Voker
National Focal Point for CPB/Liberia
posted on 2014-06-13 23:44 UTC by Mr. Johansen T. Voker, Liberia
RE: Topic 2:Strategies and approaches for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans [#6220]
Dear colleagues

Many NBSAPs and national development plans call for appropriate environmental, health and social assessment of particular technologies or interventions, especially if they have an impact on the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity. Some provide focus on LMOs, for example this is the case in Malaysia's National Policy on Biological Diversity, which is currently being revised.

Such assessments are of course an integral part of the implementation of the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety. It strikes me that in the discussion on how to better integrate biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans, we should also avail ourselves of the existing outcomes of work under the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety, such as the "Guidance on Risk Assessment of Living Modified Organisms" developed by the Ad Hoc Technical Expert Group on Risk Assessment and the relevant online discussion forums. The Guidance for example, provides guidance for Parties and others on risk assessment, providing a ready, practical and useable document. Such documents can help Parties to ensure that when biosafety is integrated into NBSAPs and national development plans, this is on the basis of clear and informed elements.

Kind regards
Lim Li Ching
Third World Network
posted on 2014-06-14 14:26 UTC by Ms. Li Ching Lim, Third World Network
RE: Topic 2:Strategies and approaches for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans [#6225]
The Nigeria NBSAP document was developed sometimes back at a time when Biosafety issues were not Incorporated
Therefore the document needs to be further reviewed and developed to incorporate modern biotech activities
Though in the said NBSAP document some specific projects,activities and the methodology for their implementation was highlighted aimed a reducing poverty,employment generation,environmental sustainability, wealth creation etc
Now that we are talking Biosafety (modern biotech) most of the activities identified in the NBSAP document can be developed further to now include modern biotech to fast track the actualization of the set objectives in the NBSAP
Challenges on soil degradation,erosion,flood,drought,desertification etc can adequately be addressed by modern biotech with the introduction of bio engineered plants that can withstand harsh weather and other environmental challenges
Introduction of Improved modern biotech (bio-engineered) food  crops for healthy living,nutritional enhancement and higher crop yield with less application of chemical would enrich the NBSAP There will be more activities thus creating employment generation in our higher institutions.Concerns about brain drains from institutions will be reduced More capacity building to cater for next generations would also be accomplished due to various activities and programs in the modern biotech
R A Usman
posted on 2014-06-14 17:01 UTC by Mr. Raheef Ademola Usman, Nigeria
RE: Topic 2:Strategies and approaches for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans [#6229]
Thanks Raheef for sharing these wonderful ideas with the group

Unfortunately our time is up and we'll take these issues further should there be another chance for another online forum on these matters
Cheers
Malta
posted on 2014-06-14 22:54 UTC by Ms. Malta Qwathekana, South Africa
RE: Topic 2:Strategies and approaches for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans [#6213]
Dear Colleagues,
Thank you once more to our Chairs and to the Secretriat for organizing this furum and extending the time to participate.
Here we present our responses to the proposed questions.
1.   In what way and with what specific tools, processes and mechanisms has your governments integrated biosafety considerations into NBSAPs and national development plans?
In México, the process for updating the NBSAPs takes several rounds of consultation with the competent officials. Other participations are promoted, including academia, institutions, civil society and government. A set of actions are included into the NBSAP, focusing on those items that are determined to be a priority such as: biodiversity knowledge, conservation, and sustainable use of genetic resources and therefore are proposed to be reviewed by consensus to build up the NSBSAP. An additional component has been included in the NBSAP currently in revision: communicating the information to the society and letting the public know more about biodiversity and biosafety because of its relevance, accordingly to CBD/PCB and Aichi goals.

For integrating the biosafety considerations in our global national plan (PND), a large consultation is promoted at a national scale; the process is complemented with the inclusion of diagnostics, statistics and sectorial public consultations for the elaboration of the PND. The opinions are used for elaborating the Official National Development Plan, which at the moment reflects five global strategies and several specific goals. From this legal framework, the National Sectorial Programs are designed on the basis of the strategic goals that have a general overview, further on these are complemented with action plans of the Secretaries, all of which incorporate in turn the biodiversity and biosafety guidelines accordingly. Priorities are then aligned to meet the targets on each sector strategy or action plan, by the responsible competent agencies. It is at this level of the planning process that particular actions are consider and included.
2.      What are some of the potential entry points for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans?
The National Law of Biosafety of Genetically Modified Organisms in México (LBOGM) mandates in its article 9, on the principles of Biosafety that: “for producing and conducting public policies on biosafety as well as the instruments and Mexican standards the following principles have to be observed […] The Mexican nation owns one of the richest biodiversity in the world and in its territory there are areas that are center of origin and of genetic diversity of species and varieties that have to be protected, utilized, promoted and sustainably used, because of their quality as a resource of molecules and genes for the sustainable development of the country.” Therefore, compliance with the national environment policy and implementation of The National Law of Biosafety (LBOGM) and derived regulatory instruments dictates a legal requirement to abide CBD and PCB principles and incorporate biosafety into the NBSAPs and National Development Plans.
The National Focal Points promote activities for compiling and presenting to the Competent National Authorities (represented in different Secretaries) with the diagnostics, results of consultations and the statistics that are necessary for preparing those action plans and programs.
3.   What additional tools could be developed to assist in designing interventions for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans which are likely to be highly effective and have the desired impact?
• It could be useful to exchange experiences that other countries use on the process of incorporating biosafety into their National Plans, possibly this could open the possibility to generate a Guidance tool based upon the Parties most relevant experiences.
• Perhaps, elaborating a list with minimal criteria that Parties have identified as difficult milestones or any other relevant topics where there are common issues for linking biodiversity goals and biosafety considerations, could be of interest to assist/exemplify/share experience with the CBD/PCB parties.

• Periodic revisions of the National priorities on biodiversity and biosafety could be recommended for consistency with local regulatory needs, as well as evaluating on going activities.
posted on 2014-06-14 04:39 UTC by Ms. Sol Ortiz García, Mexico
RE: Topic 2:Strategies and approaches for integrating biosafety into NBSAPs and national development plans [#6232]
Dear Colleagues and friends of the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety

I would like to take this opportunity to thank the Secretariat of CBD for organising this online discussion on the implementation of the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety and allowing myself and Daniel to co-moderate it. It was great fun working with you Daniel! I would also like to thank all those who have participated in the online discussion. Your inputs were great and I hope all of us have benefitted from each other's experiences. I would also like to thank those who visited our online discussions and took some time to read the contributions participants made because when I had conversation with other CBD and particularly Biosafety focal points offline I established that even though they were not contributing to the online discussions they were reading the contributions made online by other Parties and that was great colleagues. What came out very clearly from the discussions are the following:
1. Lack of adequate resources to implement the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety
2. Importance of synergies - aligning biosafety with other national plans such as the NBSAPs and other national development plans as that will assist in raising the profile of Biosafety at a national level, avoid duplication of efforts and make it gain access to national budgets and other financing mechanisms such as the GEF
3. Importance of national legislation on biosafety which makes biosafety gain national recognition and hence gain access to national budgets and recognition as a national priority
4. Importance of the NBSAP as a policy document for the implementation of biological diversity conservation activities in general and the Convention Protocols as implementing tools for certain aspects of the Convention. Therefore it is of critical importance to have these Convention Protocols (on Biosafety and Access and benefit sharing) as integral parts of the NBSAPs and not treating them as completely independent international Treaties from the CBD.

Having said that Colleagues let us go back to our National Biodiversity Strategies and Action Plans (NBSAPs) and make sure these Convention Protocols are the integral components of our NBSAPs, and that they are integrated into our other National development plans and that biosafety policies and legislation are developed, revised where appropriate and adequately implemented. As National focal points let us make sure we are ambassadors of the Convention and its protocols and promote their visibility and hence recognition and adequate implementation. Failure to do that means we are failing in meeting our obligations as National Focal Points.

It was a really great pleasure working with you in this online discussion

Have great fun and a safe trip to Korea in September/October and see you all there!!!

Best Regards
Malta
posted on 2014-06-14 23:58 UTC by Ms. Malta Qwathekana, South Africa