D-G seeks support for biotechnology to fast track economic devt.

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By Sylvester Thompson

Prof. Abdullahi Mustapha, the Director-General, National Biotechnology Research and Development Agency (NBRDA), has called for adequate support for biotechnology to facilitate speedy economic recovery and development in the country.

Mustapha told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Tuesday that for speedy economic recovery and growth, Nigerians, corporate bodies and organisations needed to support biotechnology.

Biotechnology is a technology that harnesses biological processes, organisms, or systems to develop innovative products and solutions.

The director-general said that biotechnology served as a catalyst for economic development by addressing national challenges, fostering innovations and promoting sustainability.

“To leverage on biotechnology means to advance and empower nations to build resilient economies, improve living standards and to achieve sustainable development.

” Therefore, strategic investment in biotechnology research, infrastructure, and human capital is essential for unlocking its full potential and driving economic prosperity,” he said.

With statistics gotten from the International Service for the Acquisition of Agri-biotech Applications (ISAAA) ,2017, Mustapha said the report mentioned the contributions of biotechnology crops to food security, sustainability and climate change.

He disclosed that between 1996 till 2016, biotech crops increased crop productivity up to 186.1 billion dollars, derived from farm income gains globally.

He said in the same period, there was less pesticide applications to biotech crops, which helped to decrease environmental impact of herbicide and insecticide use, leading to enhancement of better environment.

The director-general said accordingly, the productivity gained through biotechnology saved 183 million hectares of land within the periodic years.

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Mustapha assured that biotechnology enhanced agricultural products and resilience.

“These include genetically modified crops for increased yields, pest resistance and drought tolerance.

“Biotechnology-driven agricultural solutions contribute to food security, farmers livelihoods and economic development,” he said.(NAN) www.nannews.ng

Edited by Deji Abdulwahab

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