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High-level Policy Dialogue on Bioeconomy in Burundi and East Africa

High-level Policy Dialogue on Bioeconomy in Burundi and East Africa

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Event Date: 17 October 2023

Event Time: 8:30 am – 1:00pm

Venue: Bujumbura, Burundi

The International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology (icipe)/BioInnovate Africa, in partnership with the East African Science and Technology Commission (EASTECO), the Stockholm Environment Institute (SEI) – Africa Centre, and the Ministry of National Education and Scientific Research, Republic of Burundi will hold a high-level policy dialogue on bioeconomy on 17 October 2023 in Bujumbura, Burundi, under the theme “National bioeconomy strategies: paving the future growth path for Eastern Africa”.

The concept of bioeconomy is centered around scientific research, knowledge, and innovation to support the sustainable production and use of biological resources to create innovative products, processes, and services for all economic sectors. Sub Saharan Africa, with its rich biological diversity, and a relatively large proportion of arable land, is well positioned to tap these opportunities, and build a competitive but sustainable bioeconomy. The latter is seen as one of the ways of diversifying sources of growth through value addition to biological resources and linking production to new markets.

The development of a bioeconomy in Eastern Africa, though still in its early stages, presents opportunities for the region to leverage its biological resources to achieve sustainable economic growth. It will support regulatory and policy developments, create more investment opportunities in research and development, and enhance industrial and biomanufacturing capacity of the region. The bioeconomy further plays a crucial role in mitigating climate change, adapting to its impacts, and conserving biodiversity.

The East African Regional Bioeconomy Strategy that was announced by the East African Community Secretary General in December 2022 is an important step towards unlocking the region’s bioeconomy potential. To maximize benefits, countries should develop national strategies, as those that prioritize early implementation are likely to reap its rewards early and align themselves with other countries investing in the bioeconomy.

This policy dialogue aims to discuss the importance of national bioeconomy strategies for future economic growth in Eastern Africa, with a focus on Burundi. The policy dialogue will bring together key stakeholders in Burundi, regional experts including members of the BioInnovate Africa Programme Advisory Committee, and BioInnovate Africa innovation project partners to share experiences, best practices, and lessons learned in developing and implementing national bioeconomy strategies. By exploring the potential of the bioeconomy and identifying ways to overcome societal challenges, this policy dialogue aims to contribute to the development of a sustainable and inclusive bioeconomy in Burundi and Eastern Africa.

The objectives of the high-level policy dialogue on bioeconomy are to:

  1. Outline the importance of national bioeconomy strategies capitalizing on the efforts of the East African Regional Bioeconomy Strategy.
  2. Share experiences, best practices, and lessons learned for the preparation and implementation of national bioeconomy strategies.
  3. Discuss a roadmap for the development of a national bioeconomy strategy for Burundi.