Virtual Workshop Held To Ascertain Risks Connected With Handling & Disposal Of Chemical & Biological Substances In Pakistan’s Health Sector.

A Virtual Workshop Was Held To Ascertain Risks Connected With Handling And Disposal Of Chemical And Biological Substances, Especially In Pakistan’s Health Sector, Which Is Even More Crucial During The Pandemic. The workshop was conducted under the European Union Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear (CBRN) Risk Mitigations Centres of Excellence initiative. It was attended by representatives and from various government ministries and the National Institute of Health.

The EU CBRN Risk Mitigation Centres of Excellence Initiative was launched in 2010 by the European Union and provides a platform for voluntary regional cooperation on all CBRN-related hazard issues. The aim of the Centres of Excellence Initiative is to help partner countries mitigate risks and build a culture of safety, security and preparedness. EU support is provided to implement a wide range of CBRN Risk Mitigation activities including needs and risk assessments, national and regional action plans and trainings in all 62 Partner Countries.

At the opening session, EU Ambassador to Pakistan Androulla Kaminara, said:

“Cooperation is key to addressing and mitigating CBRN risks. These workshops offer the possibility to have an open and substantial discussion on risk mitigation. The European Commission’s Joint Research Centre has developed tools for this purpose including the Needs Assessment Questionnaire, being discussed today, which could contribute to a wider national strategy. Pakistan is committed to strengthening prevention, mitigation and response to Chemical and Biological risks and the EU stands available to support Pakistan throughout the whole process.”

In the Central Asia region of the CoE, several countries have already completed the CBRN National Action Plans including Uzbekistan and Afghanistan, while others are underway. Pakistan has been involved in seven Centre of Excellence projects implemented in the Central Asia region, on topics including strengthening Public Health Laboratories for mitigating risks linked to climate change, addressing chemical and biological waste management and preparedness and response to mass gatherings and other health threats.

Promoting EU-Pakistan cooperation in science, technology and innovation is also a priority under the EU-Pakistan Strategic Engagement Plan to further enhance engagement between both sides. This includes through knowledge sharing, development of links between research institutions and exchange of information on opportunities for research cooperation.

The EU Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear (CBRN) Risk Mitigation Centres of Excellence (CoE) Initiative is funded and implemented by the European Union through the Neighbourhood, Development and International Cooperation Instrument (NDICI), the EU’s main international cooperation instrument supporting security initiatives and peace-building activities in Partner Countries. The Initiative is led by the European Commission’s Service for Foreign Policy Instruments (FPI), in close coordination with the European External Action Service (EEAS).

This news was originally published at Daily Times.