Philippines: Philippines Streamlines Biotechnology Regulations with Revised Joint Department Circular
On February 15, 2022, the Philippines approved the revised Joint Department Circular No. 1 (JDC), streamlining the regulatory policy governing plant biotechnology. Signed by five Department Secretaries, the document was published in two newspapers on March 8, 2022, and will go into effect 15 days later. The reforms are expected to shorten the timeline for approvals significantly and greatly reduce compliance costs for commercializing genetically engineered crops. Passage of the revised JDC again highlights Philippine leadership in biotechnology, following its approval of Golden Rice for commercial propagation in 2021. The science-based policy will foster agricultural innovation to help the country address Sustainable Development Goals of zero hunger (SDG 2) and climate action (SDG 13).