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Agricultural Biotechnology: Potential for Use in Developing Countries

The authors of this report, from the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics (ABARE), assess the likely socio-economic and environmental issues of adopting biotechnology. They conclude that some of the poorest regions of the world stand to gain the most by the technology, through higher yields, better nutrition and helping to develop crops that are better adapted to local conditions.

The report stresses the importance and value of cost-benefit analyses, and the need to consider technologies on a case-by-case basis. As well as outlining specific developments in agricultural biotechnology, the authors argue the cases for and against its use, and assess the potential economic impacts. Issues currently facing developing countries with regard to GM crops include the need for a sound regulatory system, trade impacts and intellectual property rights.

This report gives a general overview relating to GM crops in developing countries, with more emphasis on the socio-economic agenda than many other reports of this nature. It will be of specific interest to those focussing on the financial and trade impacts of GM crops for developing countries.

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