International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture

Research Paper 8

Estimation of countries’ interdependence in plant genetic resources provisioning national food supplies and production systems

The Contracting Parties of the International Treaty recognize that plant genetic resources for food and agriculture are a common concern of all countries, in that all countries depend largely on plant genetic resources for food and agriculture that originated elsewhere. Nearly 20 years ago, an initial research on interdependence among countries on crop diversity provided information helpful for countries to establish the Treaty, and in particular its Multilateral System of Access and Benefit-sharing.

Through Resolution 2/2013, the Governing established an intergovernmental process to enhance the functioning of the Multilateral System requested all available information be taken into account as a basis for supporting the work of the Ad Hoc Open-Ended Working Group to Enhance the Functioning of the Multilateral System. The Secretariat of the International Treaty published a notification encouraging international organizations to make available information relevant to the work of the Working Group.

In response to such call, the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT) in collaboration with a wide range of research partners, have prepared a fully updated estimation of interdependence among countries, with enhancements in regard to the breadth and depth of the analysis for more than 150 countries. The research confirms the results of the initial research, and provides major enhancements in regard to the breadth and depth of the analyses, using powerful visualization tools to display the results. While the initial research focused only on calories, the new analyses include all available measures of national food supplies (calories, protein, fat, and food weight) and three pertinent measures of national production systems (production quantity, harvested area, and production value), and reveal change over the past 50 years.





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