ESA Working Paper No. 04-14



National Agricultural Biotechnology
Research Capacity in Developing

Joel Cohen, John Komen and José Falck Zepeda


PDF (179 KB)

Agricultural and Development Economics Division
The Food and Agriculture Organization
of the United Nations



Adequate public research capacity is key to the appropriate development of biotechnology, including genetically modified (GM) crops. While commercial crops can be introduced without intensive local research (i.e. insect resistant GM cotton), introducing products of public research depend on indigenous capacity. This paper defines capacity for agricultural biotechnology research and then provides national funding levels for such work in six developing countries. As one indicator of capacity and outputs, GM crops developed from public research in developing countries are documented, and attention given to issues remaining for capacity, research and development. Knowledge of investments in public biotechnology improves policy decisions, clarifies roles of the public and private sectors, and supports public-sector implementation of research. The paper concludes with conclusions and implications based on the investment and GM crop research data presented.


© FAO 2004