Plant breeders bill approved for public comment

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Pretoria - Cabinet has approved the publication of the Plant Breeders Rights Amendment Bill, 2011 for public comment. 

The Bill aims to strengthen the protection of intellectual property rights related to new varieties of plants, said Cabinet spokesperson Jimmy Manyi.

"Such protection contributes to economic growth, as it has a positive impact on the competitiveness of South Africa's agriculture sector." 

Manyi said Cabinet also approved the submission of the Fertilisers and Feed Bill to Parliament. 
The Bill seeks to modernise the regulation and regulatory framework of fertilisers, animal feeds (farm feeds) and sterilising plants in order to support the animal welfare, food safety, food security and environmental management objectives. 

Cabinet also approved the amendment of the Veterinary and Para-veterinary Act, 1982 through the Veterinary and Para-veterinary Amendment Bill, 2011. 

Manyi said the Act was being amended to cater for, amongst others, the performance of compulsory community service by newly qualified veterinarians. 

He said this will help to address the shortage of veterinarians throughout the country and more specifically the shortage in rural areas. 

Also approved for submission to Parliament is the South African Weather Service Amendment Bill, 2011. 

"The Amendment Bill provides for further objectives and functions for the South African Weather Service pertaining to the ambient air quality information service. 

The Amendment Bill further aligns the provisions pertaining to the Weather Service Board with the Public Finance Management Act of 1999," he said. 

Cabinet also approved the Rental Housing Amendment Bill, 2011 for submission to Parliament. 

The Bill seeks to amend the Rental Housing Act, 1999, so as to substitute certain definitions; to require the MECs and local authorities to establish Rental Housing Tribunals & Rental Housing Information Offices, respectively; to extend the powers of the Rental Housing Tribunals to rescind any of its rulings; and to provide for matters connected therewith. - BuaNews

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