2002 is International Year of Mountains (IYM). IYM marks the consolidation of efforts to address issues of sustainable development of mountain areas where an ecosystem approach to conservation is being planned. Initiatives, events, networks are all part of the year - long commemoration in addition to development activities being undertaken in mountain areas.


IUCN Regional Biodiversity Programme, Asia in association with the Regional Sustainable Use Programme is currently preparing a 'Resource Kit' on mountain biodiversity aimed to provide a comprehensive information package for those involved in mountain area conservation and development.

The Kit contains information documents on key thematic areas, reports on international and regional initiatives, national activities, a set of relevant bibliography, information from institutions working on mountain issues, results of IYM activities, related website information and others.

We are currently soliciting information to be a part of the kit. If you have information or a site to refer, please contact us on

It is expected that the Resource Kit will be ready for release at the Mountain Summit in Bhiskek during October 2002.

Agriculture and Biodiversity

Balakrishna Pisupati
IUCN Regional Biodiversity Programme, Asia

Agricultural biodiversity forms the basis for sustainable food security and development. Issues of agriculture and biodiversity have long received attention from a wide range of sectors and stakeholders. However, recent developments in international policy and focus have impacted agrobiodiversity and its use considerably. This primer provides information on agrobiodiversity, the cross-sectoral linkages, international and regional policy impacting agrobiodiversity, its conservation and use besides providing some policy and practical options for enhancing agrobiodiversity.
Launch of this publication will take place on the 21st August'02 in Colombo, Sri Lanka by Mrs Aban Marker Kabraji, Regional Director, IUCN Asia.

A review of National Biodiversity Strategies and Action Plans (NBSAP's)
This publication is a snapshot of the NBSAP process in Asia and pays special attention to the process of developing biodiversity strategies and action pans at national level. This book grew from papers presented and discussions held at two regional workshops followed by intensive interaction via e-mails between participants and the IUCN Asia Regional Biodiversity Programme. The book is essentially divided into three parts dealing with review of biodiversity conservation challenges in the 18 Asian countries followed by country case studies and addressing three critical cross cutting concerns requiring special attention from all local governments viz: economics, law and communications.
The programmes received financial support from UNDP, UNEP and the Governments of Norway, Switzerland and the United Kingdom.

Established in 1996, the IUCN Regional Biodiversity Programme, Asia aims to help countries in the region effectively implement the provisions of Convention on Biological Diversity(CBD) in addition to supporting national and regional initiatives on securing community and household livelihood securities.

The Programme is one of the significant regional initiatives working across 18 countries in Asia through a partnership approach to help build capacity and decision making at various levels.

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The Regional Biodiversity Programme, Asia is currently implementing projects in about 12 countries in Asia on a range of issues concerning conservation and development with a commitment to work in partnership to build capacity in the region. The programme is aiming for both strategic and sustainable presence in the region.

The programme's strategy for 2002-2005 emphasises the fact that creating an enabling environment is the prelude to successful development as well as implementation of policies and programmes.

Currently the programme is strengthening its funding base, human resources and strategic linkages with other regions and internationally.