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as a model for other countries. During the 54th convocation of the Indian Agricultural Research Institute (IARI) in February 2016, the then President of India, Pranab Mukherjee highlighted in his speech that IARI has developed genetically modified Golden Rice enriched with pro- vitamin A along with high-protein maize, and iron- and zinc-rich wheat, pearl millet and lentil varieties through molecular breeding. A project called “Development of Golden Rice for various agro- ecological zones of Bihar” was underway at the Rajendra Agricultural University, in Bihar state, utilising a funding support of almost US$ 95,000 (Rs 6.8 million) under the national agriculture development programme (Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana). Despite being the first to develop Golden Rice in the country, in 2017, a group of Indian researchers reported that the genes needed to produce Golden Rice have unintended effects. When they inserted the engineered DNA in the high-yielding and agronomically superior Indian rice variety, Swarna, it became pale and stunted. The yields were so reduced that it was unsuitable for cultivation. Philippines In February 2017, the Philippines Rice Research Institute (PhilRice) and the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) submitted two applications for field testing and biosafety permit for direct use in food, feed, or for processing, of GR2E Golden Rice to the Philippines’ Department of Agriculture-Bureau of Plant Industry. These applications were filed after confined field trials were conducted by PhilRice between 2015 and 2016, where PhilRice concluded that Golden Rice has the same nutritional components with ordinary rice except for its beta-carotene content and did not impact key agronomic properties of the rice, including yield. January - 2019 PhilRice and IRRI discreetly carried out with the confined field test and kept mum on the status of Golden Rice in Philippines after August 2013, when more than 400 farmers and basic sectors trooped to the office of the Department of Agriculture’s Regional Office in Pili, Camarines Sur and uprooted the Golden Rice field trials there. According to the farmers, the direct action was to prevent contamination of their precious traditional and farmer-bred varieties. The two institutions blamed the uprooting for causing setbacks to the planned commercialisation of Golden Rice for another two to three years, despite the fact that IRRI also confessed that the yields of the Golden Rice variety grown in the field trials proved to be a failure, with average yields lower than those of local varieties. Yet new field trial applications are being filed by PhilRice. According to PhilRice, the field trials will only run for one cropping season, after that the application for commercial propagation will be filed. Aside from the field trials, the Golden Rice proponents likewise filed an application for direct use for food, feed and processing. Bangladesh Bangladesh completed the confined field testing of Golden Rice at the Bangladesh Rice Research Institute (BRRI), campus in Gazipur, in early 2017. It is now in the stage of submitting an application to the Minister of the Environment and the Minister of Agriculture for a multilocation field test in farmers’ fields. Further, an application for an environmental and food safety assessment on GR2E BRRI dhan29 Golden Rice was submitted to the Ministry of Agriculture in November 2017 and to the Ministry of the Environment and Forests on the following month. However, concerns over trade contamination of Golden Rice have also arisen in Bangladesh. Bangladesh itself already stumbles upon the problem of exporting their agricultural products since they allowed commercial production of Bt eggplant in 2013. Bangladesh is very cautious of having any contamination of GM rice in their rice export, worried that it may affect their agricultural export market. Indonesia Public information about Golden Rice development in Indonesia is very limited. Golden Rice itself has been tested in Indonesia since 2012 at the Rice Research Centre (BB Padi) in Bogor, West Java. In March 2014, one of IRRI’s researchers went to BB Padi to see the follow up of Golden Rice research in Indonesia. In the meeting with the head of the rice research centre and other researchers, IRRI confirmed that Golden Rice IR64 GR2-R showed low quality of agronomical results in Indonesia, compared to conventional IR64. For that reason, since 2014, plans to conduct confined tests in Indonesia have been postponed. Despite the development failures and the postponement of confined test in Indonesia, IRRI’s application to the Food Safety Australia and New Zealand (FSANZ) in 2016 stated that IRRI is undertaking a pre- market biotechnology consultation together with its National Agricultural Research and Extension System (NARES) partners and planning regulatory submissions, including in Indonesia. Golden Rice : Patents on Who owns Golden Rice? The technology behind the original Golden Rice (GR1, made with a daffodil gene) was developed and patented in 2000 by the public scientists Ingo Potrykus and Peter Beyer. They assigned their rights over the technology to Syngenta. Syngenta in turn negotiated other licenses from other sources, including Monsanto, to make the technology workable and then 11