§ Dr. Tonge
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development (1) what discussions she has had with the Department of Trade and Industry, the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food and the Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions concerning terminator gene technology; 
(2) what discussions she has had with other Government departments concerning the effect of genetically modified crops on the agriculture of developing countries. 
§ Mr. Foulkes
The Department for International Development (DFID) officials have had a number of discussions with the Department of Trade and Industry, the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, and the Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions (DETR) concerning the effect of genetically modified crops, including the so-called terminator gene technology, on the agriculture of developing countries, in particular through DFID' s membership of the Interdepartmental Group on Genetic Modification Technology (IGGMOT).
Officials also actively supported the UK contribution to debate on the issue of terminator gene technology at the Fourth Conference of the Parties to the Biodiversity Convention in May 1998, which urged Parties to consider a precautionary approach and undertook, through its technical subsidiary body, to examine the consequences of this technology and to elaborate scientifically based advice.
We will shortly be publishing a statement on DFID policy towards Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) and developing countries, reflecting the precautionary approach and outlining the action we intend to take, in consultation with other Government Departments, on this issue in the future. DFID will also continue to work with DETR and other Government Departments successfully to conclude the negotiation of a Biosafety Protocol to the Convention on Biological Diversity, which would lay down international rules and procedures covering the transboundary movement of GMOs and help build the capacity of developing countries in related safety issues.