National expenditures for PGRFA conservation

National expenditures on PGRFA conservation are difficult to assess, largely because of uncertainties in defining the scope of PGRFA programs. It seems that most countries' national efforts to conserve PGRFA are in the hands of different departments in different ministries. In addition to the complex administrational structure, other parastatal and nongovernmental organizations are involved in the conservation activities as well. Only in some countries are all efforts coordinated by an overall national program.

Hence, the costs involved are not always visible. Furthermore, countries are involved in PGRFA conservation but do not have specially defined budget lines for these activities. For instance, if a genebank belongs to a national breeding institute and its costs are incorporated in the institute's overall budget, it is difficult to assess its specific costs.

Data concerning the national expenditures for conservation of PGRFA can be divided into two different groups:

• Domestic expenditures, which have been spent for conservation activities in the country.

• Foreign assistance contributions, i.e., expenditures, which have been contributed as financial aid for PGRFA conservation in other countries (through bi- or multilateral contributions).

3.2.1 Domestic expenditures

The most important category for national PGRFA conservation is in domestic expenditures. The information received was tabulated into the main two cost categories (ex situ and in situ conservation activities), wherever possible. Due to the previously discussed difficulties concerning the homogeneity of the data, the comparison of all data received is only possible at a high level of aggregation, i.e., for PGRFA conservation as a total.

Based on the data provided, the order of magnitude of domestic expenditures spent for the conservation of PGRFA by 37 countries amounts to approximately US$475 million for the year 1995 (see Table 8-1). This figure includes the financial assistance of US$17 million, which 15 countries received through bilateral and multilateral contributions (Virchow, 1999a).

Table 8-1. Domestic expenditures for PGRFA conservation in 1995

Domestic Domestic expenditures, expenditures,

Table 8-1. Domestic expenditures for PGRFA conservation in 1995

Domestic Domestic expenditures, expenditures,


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