GENET archive


6-Regulation: Cartagena Protocol negotiations - voices of NGOs and industry

interview: The Outcome

March, 17. 2006, Curitiba - Shortly after the end of the final meeting
Lin Li Lim of the Third World Network Malaysia comments on the results of
the conference. The "Contains"-regulation was adopted, with a transition
period of 6 years. The NGOs are partly satisfied.

Video with subtitles (german)
Video with subtitles (portugese)
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Team:  Rudolf Buntzel/Bärbel Schönafinger
Language: english | Length:  3 min | Size: 5 MB
Format: rm  | Date: 18-03-2006

                                 PART I
------------------------------- GENET-news -------------------------------

TITLE:  biotech foods: international safety laws agreed
SOURCE: Friends of the Earth International
DATE:   17 Mar 2006

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biotech foods: international safety laws agreed

CURITIBA (BRAZIL), 17 March 2006 - United Nations talks on the global
trade in genetically modified (GM) foods and crops ended here today with
an agreement on the labelling of GM grains traded worldwide. Friends of
the Earth welcomed the agreement as a "small step forward" but attacked
the biotech industry and the trade interests of a few countries for
blocking progress towards better protection for developing countries and
the environment.

The biotech industry consistently opposed clear identification and
labelling requirements for GM crops. Without clear labelling many
countries, especially developing countries with their limited resources,
are unable to protect their food supply and environment from GM contamination.

Nnimmo Bassey, International Coordinator of the Friends of the Earth GMO
Campaign said:

"Protection of the environment and the public from genetically modified
crops has taken a small step forward today. However it is clear that
trade interests and the biotech industry stopped a better agreement from
being made. Countries have the right to know what is being imported into
their country and the right to say no to GM crops."

The UN Biosafety Protocol, which was originally agreed in January 2000,
provides basic international rules that allow mainly developing countries
to regulate the safety of GM foods, crops and seeds. It has been ratified
by 132 countries but the three main countries that grow GM crops - the
United States, Argentina and Canada - have refused to support it.

Ten years after the first significant planting of GM crops, no plants
with benefits to consumers or the environment have materialized and GM
crops have failed to deliver the promises of the biotech industry. More
than 80% of the area cultivated with biotech crops is still concentrated
in only three countries: the US, Argentina and Canada.

Friends of the Earth International recently published a report that
concluded: 	_ 	 GM crops are not green. Monsanto's GM soybeans, the most
extensively grown GM crop today, has led to an increase in herbicide use.
The intensive cultivation of soybeans in South America is fostering
deforestation, and has been associated with a decline in soil fertility
and soil erosion.

GM crops do not tackle hunger or poverty. Most GM crops commercialized so
far are destined for animal feed, not for food, and none have been
introduced to address hunger and poverty issues. In Argentina, the second
biggest producer of GM crops in the world, only 2% of the soya stays in
the country. Other developing countries, such as Indonesia and India,
have experienced substantial problems with Monsanto's GM crops, often
leaving farmers heavily indebted.

The biotech industry has failed to introduce the promised new generation'
of GM crops with consumer benefits. After 30 years of research, only two
modifications have made it to the marketplace on any scale: insect
resistance and herbicide tolerance.

for more information contact

In Curitiba, Brazil
Nnimmo Bassey, Friends of the Earth International / Friends of the Earth
Tel: +44 7785334200 (UK mobile) or email

Adrian Bebb, Friends of the Earth Europe
Tel +49 1609 490 1163 (German mobile) or email

In Europe
Juan Lopez, Friends of the Earth International Tel +34 6259 805 820
(Spanish mobile)

For more information: Background on biosafety:

                                 PART II
------------------------------- GENET-news -------------------------------

TITLE:  Weak GMO identification improvements insufficient to protect
developing countries
SOURCE: Greenpeace International
DATE:   18 Mar 2006

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Weak GMO identification improvements insufficient to protect developing

International -- Curitiba, Brazil, Saturday, March 18, 2006 - Greenpeace
today welcomed, with reservations, a last minute compromise at the
Biosafety Protocol negotiations which improves standards of
identification of genetically engineered organisms in international
shipments of food and feed. However, the new regulations fall short of
fully protecting vulnerable developing countries from unidentified and
potentially illegal GMO imports.

"The vast majority of the 132 member states party to the Biosafety
Protocol came to the meeting intending to propose clear language
requiring the clear identification of shipments which contain GMOs," said
Greenpeace International's Benedikt Haerlin from the meeting in Curitiba.
"What they've come away with is 'may contain GMOs'. While this weak
agreement is an improvement on the current regulations, it doesn't go far

"Responsibility for this compromise decision falls squarely at the feet
of a minority group of vested interests led by transnational Agro-Biotech
firms, commodity traders, the US, Canada and Argentina (not members of
the Protocol), who used countries like Mexico and Paraguay as stalking
horses to hijack proceedings from the very start, turning crucial
international negotiations on the issues of biodiversity, biosafety and
human health into hard-nosed trade deals.

"In the process, Mexico and Paraguay have betrayed the aspirations of
developing countries, who, despite the mild improvements in the
regulations, will now be obliged to look to additional national
legislation to protect themselves," concluded Haerlin.

Greenpeace is an independent, campaigning organisation which uses non-
violent, creative confrontation to expose global environmental Problems,
and to force solutions essential to a green and peaceful future.

Further information:

Benedikt Haerlin, Greenpeace International GE spokesperson,
+55 41 9682 3117 Mariana Paoli, Greenpeace International GE Campaigner
+55 41 9677 1824 Michael Kessler, Greenpeace International Communications
+34 660 637 053

                                 PART III
------------------------------- GENET-news -------------------------------

TITLE:  Key decision on documentation requirements for GMOs taken in Brazil
SOURCE: CropLife, Belgium, press release
DATE:   20 Mar 2006

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20 March 2006

Key decision on documentation requirements for GMOs taken in Brazil

Curitiba, Brazil --- A decision was finally reached by Parties to the
Cartegena Protocol on Biosafety (Biosafety Protocol) on the controversial
issue of documentation requirements forshipments that may contain Living
Modified Organisms (commonly referred to as GMOs) lastFriday. The 132
Parties to the Protocol reached a compromise following deliberations
thatlasted throughout Thursday night and continued into late Friday evening.

The Protocol calls on Parties to take measures to implement a global
documentation systemfor shipments that may contain biotech products under
Article 18.2. Currently, an exporter ofcommodities destined for food,
feed or processing that may contain biotech products mustindicate that an
export cargo "may contain" LMOs. The new decision adds to this
therequirement to include a list of the biotech events that may be
contained in the shipment.

"We appreciate the efforts countries have gone through to reach a
compromise decision and move on from this issue," stated Christian
Verschueren, Director General, CropLife International. "But we still have
some concerns - most importantly, that many countries havenot fully
developed fundamental national biosafety regulations and may not be able
to meetthe requirements or properly use the list of biotech events that
may be contained in theirimports."

"We really encourage countries to look at how to implement this in a way
that will actually protect biodiversity, without unduly inhibiting
international trade," he continued. "We believethe Biosafety Clearing-
House (BCH) is a critical component of understanding and utilising

The Biosafety Protocol, which was discussed in Curitiba, Brazil 13-17
March 2006, is an international treaty under the UN Convention on
Biological Diversity and seeks to protect theworld's biodioversity from
any risks presented by biotechnology.

The BCH is an information exchange mechanism established by the Biosafety
Protocol to assist Parties with implementation of the treaty's provisions
and to facilitate sharing ofinformation on, and experiences with
biotechnology. It aims to assist governments to makeinformed decisions
regarding the importation or release of biotech products in their
borders.The BCH can be accessed at

For more information and interviews, please contact:
Christine Gould
Policy Communications & Research Manager
CropLife International
Tel: +32 2 542 04 13
Mobile: +32 474 975 204

Notes to Editors:
1. CropLife International is the global federation representing the plant
science industry. It supports a network of regional and national
associations in 91 countries, and is led by companies such as BASF, Bayer
CropScience, Dow AgroSciences, DuPont, FMC, Monsanto, Sumitomo and
Syngenta. CropLife International promotes the benefits of crop protection
and biotechnology products, their importance to sustainable agriculture
and food production, and their responsible use through stewardship

2. On the Biosafety Protocol, CropLife International works together with
a number of other organisations under the Global Industry Coalition for
the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety (GIC). The GIC recieves input and
direction from trade associations representing thousands of companies
from all over the world. Participants include associations engaged in and
companies engaged in a variety of industrial sectors, such as plant
science, seeds, agricultural biotechnology, food production, animal
agriculture, human and animal healthcare, and the environment.

For more information on the Biosafety Protocol:
iOr visit the CropLife International website at

CropLife International Avenue Louise 143 1050 Brussels, Belgium
tel: +32 2 542 04 10
fax: +32 2 542 04 19

European NGO Network on Genetic Engineering

Hartmut MEYER (Mr)
news & information

phone....... +49-531-5168746
fax......... +49-531-5168747
email....... news(*)
skype....... hartmut_meyer

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