ASEAN, China poised to distribute IRRI-developed rice breeding lines
The International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) has successfully secured the endorsement of ASEAN Member States (AMS) and the support of ASEAN Plus Three Dialogue Partners — China, Japan and the Republic of Korea — for the launch of ASEAN Rice Net, a new regional network for sharing and evaluation of advanced IRRI-developed rice breeding lines.
The collaborative partnership is underpinned by the Rice Genetic Solutions for Climate Resilience and Value Addition program, which will help accelerate farmers’ access to high value varieties under climate change environmental conditions and drive long-term increases in rice productivity and incomes.
The endorsement enables IRRI to also liaise closely with the ASEAN Plus Three Dialogue Partners, China, Japan and the Republic of Korea for the development of both technical and financing support modalities for the network.
“IRRI will assist AMS to meet their Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for food security and contribute to ensuring that ASEAN and ASEAN +3 nations have sufficient capacity to increase their rice productivity, which will be critical to meeting the food and nutrition security needs of consumers in the region,” said IRRI Director General Matthew Morell,
He then added that the region will need to secure its rice production while addressing climate change challenges, declining availability of land for agriculture due to land degradation, continued population growth and rapid urbanization.
The ASEAN Rice Net will officially launch in 2020 and is projected to generate economic benefits of at least USD0.5 billion from variety releases alone across the ASEAN region.
Through sharing of IRRI-bred advanced lines carrying characteristics desired by farmers and rice value chain stakeholders, it is expected that farmers can continue to be productive under the variable climate change environmental conditions.