The National Biotechnology Policy (NBP), which was launched by the Former Prime Minister Tun Dato’ Sri Hj Abdullah Hj Ahmad Badawi on 28 April 2005, was to establish a Bioeconomy International Advisory Panel (Bio-IAP) to assist the Government in developing the biotechnology industry in the country. The Bio-IAP Meeting, chaired by the Prime Minister comprised luminaries and leading experts from various countries in the area of biotechnology.
Further to this, the role and function of the Bio-IAP, among others was to assist the Government to formulate strategies to drive the growth and development of the biotechnology industry in Malaysia, determine priorities and the most suitable biotechnology industry to develop, as well as providing a framework for the development of the biotechnology industry in Malaysia.
The first meeting (Bio-IAP) was held in San Francisco, California, United States on 19 November 2005. During the meeting, members of the Panel exchanged views and shared information and recommended to the Government of Malaysia several steps that should be undertaken for the purpose of shaping the direction and development of Malaysia’s biotechnology industry. Malaysian Biotechnology Corporation (BiotechCorp) is currently the Permanent Secretariat for the Bio-IAP and regulated by the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (MOSTI).
The tenure for all Bio-IAP Members is for 2 years and the latest term lapsed on 2014. Generally, the Bio-IAP members are gathered from strategic sectors relevant to the development of biotechnology in Malaysia namely Agriculture, Healthcare, Industrial, Human Capital, Funding, Technology Infrastructure, Legal & Regulatory and Commercialisation. As Malaysia is now in the Phase 2 (2011-2015) of the NBP, the nominees were also chosen based on how they could effectively contribute towards the implementation of the Science to Business phase of the NBP.