Representatives from 144 countries are in Rwanda attending the 7th Session of the Governing Body of the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (ITPGRFA).

During five days, the meeting will be mainly discussing conservation, exchange and sustainable use of crop varieties among contracting parties.

Speaking at the opening, Minister of Agriculture and Animal Resources, Dr. Gerardine Mukeshimana, called upon the delegates to forge mechanisms to safeguard farmers’ rights, especially the right to equitably participate in benefits arising from the utilization of plant genetic resources for food and agriculture.

“It is my humble request to the esteemed delegates to come up with a clear mechanism acceptable by all parties for sharing the benefits from the commercial utilization of genetic resources for food and agriculture,” Minister Mukeshimana said.

Rwanda has established laws, policies and strategies that promote the conservation and sustainable use of plant genetic resources for food and agriculture.

The country’s agriculture research has also developed and released over 90 high yielding, disease and pest resistant crop varieties including beans, potatoes, maize, wheat and rice, some of which have been widely disseminated beyond Rwanda.Src:Igihe

The Express News


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