International Day for Biological Diversity

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Chief guest along with guests of honour 

The International Day for Biological Diversity (IDB) programme highlighted the importance of biological diversity in sustainable development and enhancement in local livelihoods and was celebrated 22 May 2016 at Hotel Mashabrum in Skardu, Pakistan. The event was organised by the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) in collaboration with the Pakistan Agricultural Research Council (PARC), Forest, Wildlife and Environment Department (FWED), Government of Gilgit Baltistan, Australian High Commission, Agha Khan Rural Support Programme (AKRSP) and Mountain Areas Farmer Support Organization (MAFSO). 

Participants of IBD-2016 at Skardu 

Three members of the Gilgit Baltistan Legislative Assembly, government officials, representatives of non-government organisations, local communities and students participated in the event. Activities included speeches, presentations, an exhibition and national songs by students. Mr Haji Fida Muhammad, Speaker, Gilgit Baltistan Legislative Assembly was Chief Guest. Mr Ibrahim Sannai, Minister, Education and Information Departments, Government of Gilgit Baltistan, Mr Jurek Juszczyk, Deputy High Commissioner, Australian High Commission, Dr Muhammad Azeem Khan, Director General, National Agricultural Research Centre (NARC) attended the event as guests of honour. 

Exhibition by the local partners

Experts from Forest Wildlife and Environment Department, EvK2CNR, Mountain Agricultural Research Station (MARS) and MAFSO made presentations on the role of biodiversity in sustainable development and local livelihood improvement. Dr Abdul Wahid Jasra, Country Representative, ICIMOD Pakistan Office, delivered a message from Dr David Molden, Director General, ICIMOD, and extended his gratitude to all partners and participants who made the event successful with their participation.

Students from Girls Degree College, Skardu and Public School & College presented national songs. The programme ended with the distribution of certificates among the students and souvenirs for the collaborating partners of the IDB. 

ICIMOD delegation along with experts from FWED, NARC and representative from local community organization also made a biodiversity excursion on 23 May 2016 to Shigar valley. The objective of this excursion was to assess the scope of Seabuckthorn as conservation tool for sustaining local livelihood.