Purpose and issues
The purpose of the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety is to protect biodiversity, by seeking to make international trade in genetically modified organisms (GMOs) safer. It was adopted by virtue of Article 19.3 of the Convention on Biological Diversity of 5 June 1992, and applies particularly to transboundary movements, transfer, handling, and use of GMOs.
This Protocol notably aims to address issues arising from biotechnologies. The Preamble recognises two facets of biotechnologies: their potential adverse effects on biological diversity, yet also their great potential for human well-being. The Protocol aims to reconcile trade requirements and environmental protection, and particularly to make it possible for developing countries to deal with risks from GMOs.