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Issued on 16 July 2001

Former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo issued the Philippine National Policy Statement on Modern Biotechnology, which articulates the government policy on promoting the safe and responsible use of modern biotechnology and its products as one of the means to achieve food security, equal access to health services, a sustainable and safe environment, and industry development.

“We shall promote the safe and responsible use of modern biotechnology and its products as one of several means to achieve and sustain food security, equitable access to health services, sustainable and safe environment, and industry development.

“We shall ensure that all technologies that we promote, including modern biotechnology, will provide farmers and fisherfolks the opportunity to increase their over-all productivity and income; enhance the welfare of consumers; promote efficiency, competitiveness, and improved quality standards of local industries – all within the paramount objective of attaining safely and sustainable development, including its human, social and environmental aspects.

“The Departments of Agriculture, Science and Technology, Health, Environment and Natural Resources, Trade and Industry, and other concerned agencies are hereby directed to address the current issues associated with the local and global dimensions and trends of modern biotechnology, including its potential health, environmental and social impacts. Towards this end, they shall conduct public consultations with representatives from civil society, government and business; formulate departmental directives and regulations on the access to and use of the products of modern biotechnology, coordinate activities and programs on research, development and application; and allocate appropriate resources for the upgrading of capacities and capabilities to effectively regulate the technology and its products, including but not limited to product testing and labeling.”