A gene bank that is based in Dubai is now expected to play a crucial role in the sustainable production of food.
The gene bank is home to an extensive collection of genetic materials of plants that are highly tolerant to salt and heat. In fact, the collection is the largest in the world.and will now be made available to scientists, farmers and breeders so as to produce food in a sustainable manner.
The measure comes in the wake of an agreement signed by the Director-General of the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations, Dr José Graziano da Silva, and Director-General of the International Centre for Biosaline Agriculture (ICBA), Dr Ismahane Elouafi.
The agreement heralds cooperation between the two institutions in the domains of biosaline agriculture, plant genetic resources and climate change adaptations in the environments that are on the fringes of the world. The agreement is home to Article 15 that envisages that the crop germplasm collection stored in ICBA’s gene bank will now be part of the Multilateral System of Access and Benefit-sharing.