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Biotechnology Policy, 2063 (2006 A.D.)

1. Vision:

To increase production and productivity by means of research and development of biotechnology as well as transfer of technology, and improve the living standard of Nepali people by achieving a significant progress in the field of public health and environment.

2. Background:

Biotechnology accomplishes such a task that channelises the characteristics and property of any organism or their living cells/tissues etc. in the works of human welfare. With the help of this technology, the tasks – such as modifying the production technique of biomass, transforming their characteristics and property by various means,
improving a breed of plants or animals as per necessity, channelising various micro-organisms in an assigned task and making human conducive change into genetic formation of various seeds, plants andanimals – are being carried out. As the biomass is a focal point of this technology, our country, which is deemed to be rich in biological
resources, is required to take a new step in the field of science and technology with the realization of her traditional knowledge and modern technology. In order to face the existing challenges of a developing country like ours,
the Biotechnology Policy, 2006 is formulated to obtain the potentialsopened up by biotechnology. The implementation of this policy may assist in increasing the production of food grains through biotechnology,
developing a new technology of medical treatment, controlling environmental pollution and promoting various industrial sectors.

3. Objectives:

The overall objective of this policy is to make contribution to the reduction of poverty by developing and expanding biotechnology with its use in the sectors of comparative benefit and its application as a basis
of key substitute for the development of the country as well as environment protection and public welfare. Other objectives of this policy are as follows:

3.1 To fulfill a minimal need of food grains and nutritious food for
growing population, thereby assisting in the reduction of poverty.

3.2 To use biotechnology in the areas providing comparatively benefit to Nepal.

3.3 To encourage research and development of biotechnology contributing for developing the forests, agriculture and food sectors in an internationally competitive and environmentally sustainable manner.

3.4 To promote a managerial skill in the field of biotechnology, attract the competent researchers and experts, promote an entrepreneurship and maintain a balance between demand and supply for the expert-skill.

3.5 To reduce environmental degradation and protect natural resources and means.

3.6 To develop simple and new programmes for ensuring the transformation of the results of research into professional use subject to making contribution to the rural and national economic system.

4. Strategies:

The following strategies shall be adopted to fulfill the aforesaid
objectives:

4.1 The Government to function as a promoter, facilitator and regulator.

4.2 To create a conducive environment by means of encouraging and working as a regulatory structure for the development and research of prerequisite infrastructure in biotechnology and the
sector relating thereto.

4.3 To establish biotechnology-based industries on the basis of national requirement, market demand and regional characteristics, and encourage as well as provide concession to such industries.

4.4 To make necessary legal provisions for the development and commercialization of biotechnology.

4.5 To develop a cluster, incubator and network and prepare critical mass for the research, commercialization and use of biotechnology.

4.6 To facilitate a venture capital fund and flow of bank loan to be provided for the biotechnology-based industries.

4.7 To ensure such matters as intellectual property right, bio-safety, bio-surveillance and bio-ethics.

4.8 To encourage for continuous research with a view to using biotechnology in tissue culture, forest, agriculture and food grains, herbs, mushroom production and processing system including animal and human health system.

4.9 To identify the needs of rural people involved in biotechnology based activities by means of regular monitoring and public awareness, and make necessary provision accordingly.

4.10 To promote participation of private sector and give high priority to research, development and expansion of biotechnology.

4.11 To maintain and manage the records on the achievement of biotechnology.

4.12 To draft laws on the ownership of biotechnological resources of Nepal.

4. 13 To develop indicators to measure public benefit as may be provided by biotechnology for sustainability, natural resource management, environment and biodiversity conservation, and make such benefits to the public.

4.14 To provide timely information about actual condition on size, trend and quality standard of the market of genetically modified and not modified products and consumer’s feeling thereon.

4.15 To encourage the study of biotechnology in secondary schools
and different levels of university.

5. Policies:

In order to provide a foundation for effective inter-governmental relation, promote partnership amongst stakeholders, establish open and transparent processes, increase awareness and public understanding; the following policies shall be adopted on the basis of above-mentioned strategies:

5.1 To recognize effective “enabling technology”, to be used in various sectors, and biotechnology as a sector of high priority.

5.2 To establish a ‘Biotechnology Coordination Committee’.

5.3 To establish a ‘National Biotechnology Research and Development Centre’.

5.4 To review existing laws that may effect on the use of biotechnology and make necessary provision.

5.5 To develop appropriate human resources and create opportunities 5.6 To encourage private entrepreneurs to set up laboratories, greenhouses and nurseries with a view to producing quality and disease free plants by means of biotechnology.

5.7 To create bilateral and multilateral working structures for research, development and commercialization of biotechnology.

5.8 To strengthen the institutions currently working in the field of biotechnology and establish new institutions as requires.

5.9 To establish one-window system for transportation, import and export of biotechnology-based production.

5.10 To implement the concept of biotechnology-village to promote the applied technologies.

5.11 To set up a fund at national-level in order to promote research and development of biotechnology.

5.12 To obtain membership of the International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology and establish relation with related regional and international institutions/organizations.

5.13 To promote the transfer of economically viable technology developed in a laboratory for forest, agro-based and industrial productions.

5.14 To emphasis the development of such a biotechnology that may assist to environmental protection and the management of natural resources.

5.15 To make necessary provision to set up a venture capital in financial institutions and provide tax facility as well as financia support to efficient biotechnology-based industries.

5.16 To exchange facility and technology amongst neighbouring an other developing countries and striving to maximize a cordial  for biotechnology. relationship with development partners of Nepal for the development and expansion of biotechnology.

5.17 To provide financial facilities to the feasible biotechnology-based programmes.

5.18 To provide a various levels of trainings on biotechnology to researchers as well as development workers, farmers and industrial employees.

5.19 To encourage domestic and foreign investment for the development of biotechnology and necessary for it.

5.20 To formulate and implement a long-term, mid-term and short-term training for research, development and expansion of biotechnology.

5.21 Nepal shall, in consistent with this policy, review different working procedures in order to turn a biotechnology-based patenting into reality and also review Cartagena Protocol on Biotechnology (C.P.B.), Trade Related Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS), Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) and technical aspects of Biotechnology.

6.1.1 Forest, Agriculture and Food-grains:

The sectors of importance for giving emphasis for the use of biotechnology in the field of forest, agriculture and food-grains shall be as follows:

Tissue Culture
Bio-pesticides, Bio-fertilizer and other Biotech Aspects
Natural Products in Healthcare
Animal Feeds/Supplements for Agriculture Products
Aquaculture
Plant and Animal Improvement
Decorative flowers/plants, herbs and mushrooms

 

6.1.2 Treatment of human health, animals and plants:

In order to cure normal and chronic diseases to be communicated through genetic impairment or external effect and to make timely identification of pathogen, the knowledge of modern biotech shall be utilized. The sectors of giving emphasis in this regard shall be as
follows:

Diagnostics
Vaccines
Veterinary Drugs, Diagnostics and Vaccines
Immunology and Therapeutics
Embryo Transfer
Gene Therapy

6.1.3 Environment and Biodiversity:

The activities of biotechnology shall be carried out thereby making contribution in reducing environmental pollution’s and protecting as well as preserving natural resources and biodiversity. The important sectors under
this shall be as follows:

Development of Microbial Strain Cultures
for Waste Management
In-situ and Ex-situ Conservation and
Utilization of Plant Resources
Bioremediation and Industrial Effluent
Treatment
Monitoring Tools and Biosensor
Pest Management through Natural Bioagents and Botanies

6.1.4 Industry:

Programmes shall be operated to maximise development and competitiveness of the industries established in such areas of food processing, forest based-products including the area of chemical and accomplish a significant
achievement through biotechnology-based research. The important sectors thereof shall be as follows:

Food and Industrial Products
Fermentation Products
Bio-energy

6.1.5 Deoxyribonucleic Acid (DNA) Technology:

In order to take benefit from the DNA technology, the program’s shall be operated by giving focus on the following matters:

Identification and Isolation of Genes to use in Molecular Hybridization

Studies on Polymorphism, Molecular Mapping of Endangered and Commercial Species

Selection of Gene for Breeding Program  and Development of Diagnostic Kits

DNA Profiling for Forensic
Diagnosis of Genetic Disease
Paternity Analysis, Immigration and Citizenship Record

6.2 Development of Human Resources:

6.2.1 It shall be encouraged to initiate the study of biotechnology and bio-information system in school leaving certificate, pre-bachelor, bachelor and master’s

levels of various secondary schools, universities and such
institutions related thereto.

6.2.2 Measures of promoting a common inventory of human resources shall be adopted for biotechnology.

6.2.3 Necessary initiation shall be taken to develop suitable human resources in the field of biotechnology and retain
the existing human resources and attract the new-comers.

6.2.4 Scientist shall be imparted with a short-term and long term necessary training on professional and innovative
skills.

6.2.5 Efforts shall be made to establish cooperation on study and research among national and foreign universities/institutions in the field of biotechnology.

6.2.6 Scholarships for master and PhD in science and technology shall be made available in biotechnology and
sector related thereto.

6.2.7 The program’s and systems for the promotion of entrepreneurship shall be developed by National
Biotechnology Research and Development Center, and Ministry of Environment, Science and Technology.

 

6.3 Basic Structure

6.3.1 The infrastructure of existing biotechnology-based research shall gradually be strengthened.

6.3.2 It shall be encouraged to develop necessary infrastructure in governmental, semi-governmental, private and
academic institutions for the development of biotech capacity.

6.3.3 National Biotechnology Central Laboratory shall be
established to conduct research and training as per national priority.

6.3.4 Bio-villages with a new progress made in biotechnology and best traditional techniques shall be established.

6.3.5 Instrumentation centers shall be established and developed to provide the researchers involved in biotechnology with necessary equipment’s.

 

7. Facilities

7.1 Chemical and Equipment Purchase Tax:

Necessary provisions shall be made for giving exemption on custom duty to be imposed while purchasing chemical materials and equipment on there commendation of Biotechnology Coordination Committee for a biotech industry or research institution. “Biotech industry” means an industry involved in any of the following activities:
 

To make research and development on the use of living systems and/or enzymes or bio-catalysts and produce goods through the use thereof.

To use the technologies relating, among other things, to genetic engineering or cell culture,microbiology,biochemistry, molecular biology and tissue culture.

7.2 The utmost necessary of electricity service for the development of biotechnology; shall be provided in subsidy price.

7.3 The Government shall provide land to establish a bio-village.

7.4 A Venture Capital Fund shall, by utilizing the capital market, be set up with the investment of Government of Nepal and private sector

7.5 As the Nepali citizens working in abroad may play a significant role on technology transfer and market promotion in this sector,the foreign currencies that they have generated shall been couraged to invest in this sector.

7.6 A provision of reward and admiration shall be made to encourage bio-technicians and the concerned industries.

 

8. Institutional Provisions:

8.1 A Biotechnology Coordination Committee shall be constituted for
making research and development relating to biotechnology and
developing necessary human resources for this sector as well as a
curriculum on biotechnology subject. This Committee shall
encourage the private-sector entrepreneurs to adopt biotechnology
for increasing their production and perform a task of raising
public awareness.

Composition of Biotechnology Coordination Committee shall be
as follows:

1. Honorable Minister/State Minister,
Ministry of Environment, Science

and Technology
Honourable
Member, National

Planning Commission (Looking
Biotechnology) Member

3. Secretary, Ministry of Environment,
Science and Technology Member

4. Secretary, Ministry of Law, Justice
and Parliamentary Affairs Member

5. Secretary, Ministry of Forest and Soil
Conservation Member

6. Secretary, Ministry of Industry,
Commerce and Supplies Member

7. Secretary, Ministry of Finance Member

8. Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture
and Cooperatives Member

9. Secretary, Ministry of Education and
Sports Member

10. Secretary, Ministry of Health and
Population Member

11. Secretary, Ministry of Information
and Communication Member 

12. Chairperson, Concerned
Biotechnology Association (one
person) Member

13. Rector, Tribhuvan University Member

14. Rector, any related University (one
person) Member

15. Secretary, Nepal Academy of Science
and Technology Member

16. Chairperson, Agriculture Enterprise
Centre Member

17. Biotechnology Expert (four person) Member

18. Representative of Consumer Group
(two person) Member

19. Executive Director, Nepal
Agriculture Research Council Member

20. Executive Director, National
Biotechnology Research and
Development Centre Member Secretary

8.2 National Biotechnology Research and Development Centre:

A National Biotechnology Research and Development Centre shall be constituted under the Ministry of Environment, Science and Technology. It shall perform the following functions:

8.2.1 The National Biotechnology Research and Development

Centre shall identify the priorities relating to national biotechnology and promote cooperation amongst various
components of the implementation and system of this national strategy.

8.2.2 To act as a secretariat of the National Biotechnology

Coordination Committee, implement and cause to be implemented the policy and planning relating to
biotechnology, supervise and monitor such policy and
  planning and provide support thereto and regulate the
activities carried out by private entrepreneurs.

8.2.3 To coordinate with the concerned ministries to open a

Biotechnology Division for the promotion of research and development with regard to biotechnology and set up
research laboratories in the National Biotechnology Research and Development Centre.

8.2.4 To explore about a matter of economic resource,

international relation, commercial development and public concern including moral matter and promote in finding the investment for venture capital and industrial partners in
biotechnology.

8.2.5 To prepare a list of groups of international and national
advisors.

8.3 A Biotechnology Scientific Committee shall be constituted under the National Biotechnology Research and Development Centre and the Committee shall comprise of scientists representing from
various sectors of biotechnology.

9. Legal Provisions:

Necessary laws shall be enacted to regulate a transaction to be made by means of biotechnology and other necessary provisions related with technology and to protect the rights relating to intellectual property.

10. Amendment to Policy:

Due to a rapid development being made in the field of biotechnology,this policy may be reviewed and amended as required in an interval ofevery two years as per the necessity of technology development andservice expansion. Provided that, this may, on the suggestions of varioussectors, be reviewed and amended as required even prior to the said time period.