Civil Society Organisations in Nigeria have said that global biotechnology proceed would hit $727.1 billion by 2025, and Nigeria could benefit from it if the National Biotechnology Development Agency (NABDA) is prioritised.
The CSOs also urge the Federal Government to explore the potentials inherent in NABDA to ensuring food sufficiency and creating job opportunities as well as boosting the nation’s foreign earnings.
In a resolution reached at the end of session convened by Empowerment for Unemployed Youths Initiative to review the nation’s economic policies in Abuja, the CSOs maintained confidence in the Federal Government’s economic recovery and growth plan stating that NABDA has a lot to contribute in terms of non-oil export boosting.
Biotechnology is touted to creating wealth through agricultural and environmental products. The Federal Government aware of the importance of biotechnology in national development, in April 2001, approved the establishment of National Biotechnology Policy to among other things; promote biotechnology activities that positively respond to national aspirations on food security, job/wealth creation, affordable healthcare delivery and sustainable environment, among others.
According to a statement signed by the convener and national coordinator of Empowerment for Unemployed Youths Initiative, Comr. Solomon Adodo, the Forum represented by several other civil society groups notable amongst which were Engr. Patrick Ogheneyero from Centre for Peace transparency and Accountability, Comr. Dominic Ogakwu of Civil Society Groups for Good Governance, called on the Federal Government to give increased attention to NABDA so that more jobs can be created through technologies birthed from the Agency.
“The global biotechnology market is expected to reach USD 727.1 billion by 2025, according to a new report by Grand View Research, Inc. The emergence of certain key themes in the biotechnology market is expected to drive growth in this industry to a lucrative extent.
“To tap into this bright prospects leaves the Federal Government with only the option of giving the desired support to the agency saddled with the responsibility of regulating biotechnology.
“The fact that the Buhari led administration has midwifed a robust inter Agency partnership between the National Biotechnology Development Agency and other agricultural and/or research based Agencies is quite commendable judging from the results so far obtainable in BT Cowpea and BT cotton seeds.
“Already, there are testimonies of economic prosperity from cotton and Cowpea farmers who have embraced the BT cotton and Cowpea seeds.
The Forum further commended NABDA for its pioneering role and achievements in the development of sustainable agriculture through the utilization of biotechnology tools such as culture, molecular breeding and genetic engineering.