Supporting Biotechnology Regulatory Policy Processes in Southeast Asia

Biotechnology innovations or bio-innovations can provide solutions to problems associated with food security, poverty and environmental degradation. Innovations such as genetically engineered (GE) crops can increase food production and minimize (or totally obviate) the need for chemical fertilizers and pesticides. But many Southeast Asian countries, such as Cambodia, Viet Nam and Lao PDR, have yet to develop the regulations, institutional mechanisms and organizational structures necessary for the deployment of these crops. Other countries, such as the Philippines, have regulatory policies in place but have yet to carry out an in-depth analysis of compliance.

This grant will support a two-year project to examine the institutions (such as regulatory policies) and actors (departments of agriculture, local government units, seed companies, etc.) involved in the deployment of GE crops in the first three countries mentioned above. In Cambodia and Lao PDR, where GE crops have not been released, the study will use an ex-ante analysis to assess their potential socioeconomic impact and policy implications. Building on an earlier project (103577), the Philippines component will involve an in-depth ex-post analysis of the socioeconomic impacts of three different GE corn varieties (Bt, stacked genes and herbicide-tolerant) already under cultivation in the country.

The idea is to maximize the benefits and minimize the risks of GE crops by strengthening the institutions and organizations involved in their adoption, thereby contributing to food security and poverty alleviation. The project will also help build the capacity of research partners, including junior researchers, graduate students and policymakers, in the countries involved.

Project ID


Project status


Start Date

Friday, June 18, 2010

End Date

Friday, May 31, 2013


24 months

IDRC Officer

Osir, Ellie Onyango

Total funding

CA$ 300,000


Cambodia, Far East Asia, Laos, Philippines, Central Asia, South Asia, Viet Nam


Networked Economies

Project Leader

Linda Penalba


University of the Philippines at Los Banos Foundation, Inc.

Institution Country


Institution Website