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Biotechnology offers opportunities for growth—Cimatu

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) underscored the importance of promoting biological technology and its benefits amid the devastating socioeconomic impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic and the recent typhoons that hit the country.

Environment Secretary Roy A. Cimatu said in a statement that biological technology or biotechnology “sheds a gleaming light of hope that there are still interventions that can be done to resuscitate the economy and society.”

“With Covid-19 and Typhoons Quinta, Rolly, Siony, Tony, and Ulysses happening in the same year, hopelessness seems abound. But through biotechnology, we want to show that there are still opportunities for growth and for refreshing changes in our contemporary world,” Cimatu said

The DENR chief issued the statement ahead of this year’s celebration of the National Biotechnology Week (NBW) from November 23 to 27 with the theme “Bioteknolohiya: Pagbangon at Pag-asa tungo sa Matatag na Komunidad, Kapaligiran at Ekonomiya” to adapt with the current events under the new normal.

The DENR through its research and development arm, the Ecosystems Research and Development Bureau (ERDB), is leading this year’s celebration of NBW.

For this year’s celebration, the ERDB has lined up online activities with focus on strengthening the economy while promoting biotechnology.

The NBW has been annually celebrated every last week of November through Presidential Proclamation 1414 since 2004.

The event serves as advocacy to increase awareness on biotechnology and its contributions to agriculture and food security, health-care services, education, industrial and economic development, and environmental sustainability.

During the weeklong event, seven Philippine government agencies—together with private, local and international organizations—will enlighten the public on the misconceptions and negative connotations on biotechnology.

They will also showcase generated biotechnologies for medical, agricultural, industrial, and environmental applications; and increase public awareness, education, and understanding on the use and benefits of biotechnology.

“We hope that students, faculty, entrepreneurs, government agencies, non-government organizations, policymakers, media, and the general public will be able to join us in this week-long virtual event to get to know more about biotechnology,” Cimatu said.

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