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FIRST AD HOC OPEN-ENDED WORKING GROUP ON
ACCESS AND BENEFIT-SHARING


 22-26 October 2001 Bonn, Germany

Web Archive:

 



Highlights of Wednesday, 24 October 2001
 
Delegates to the first meeting of the Ad Hoc Open-ended Working Group on Access and Benefit-sharing (ABS) under the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) met in two Sub-Working Groups throughout the day. Sub-Working Group I (SWG-I) discussed a Chair’s draft for international guidelines on ABS. Sub-Working Group II (SWG-II) discussed the role of intellectual property rights (IPR) in ABS arrangements, and a conference room paper on capacity building and approaches to ABS other than guidelines. Both Sub-Working Groups formed contact groups to assist their work. Left photo: The dias of WG II chaired by Jorge Cabrera Medaglia (COSTA RICA)

 

ENB SUMMARY

Monday
29 Oct


ENB Daily Reports

Mon 22

Tue 23

Wed 24

Thu 25

Fri 26


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SUB-WORKING GROUP I:





SWG-I Chair Birthe Ivars (Norway) introduced UNEP/CBD/ WG-ABS/1/SWG.I/CRP.1, on the Draft Guidelines. Right photo: Chair Ivars in consultation with the Sam Johnston (CBD)

GENERAL PROVISIONS:  

IRAN (right), on behalf of the G-77/ CHINA, suggested new text stating that the guidelines: may serve as inputs when developing contracts and other arrangements under mutually agreed terms (MAT) for ABS; should not be construed as changing the Parties’ rights and obligations; and may not substitute for national ABS legislation.
 




On key features, Soumayila Bance (BURKINA FASO) (far left) requested definition of “voluntary nature” under use of terms.



On scope, regarding exclusion of plant genetic resources covered by the International Undertaking (IU), the EC (left) suggested language stating that the guidelines should be without prejudice to relevant legally binding international agreements, including the IU’s ABS provisions, and preferred to address the issue under the relationship with international legal regimes. Left photo: EC's Christoph Bail making an intervention during a session of WG-I.
ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITES OF USERS AND PROVIDERS:



Mitzi Gurgel Valente da Costa (BRAZIL) (right) clarified that users’ responsibilities appear to be voluntary, while contracts are binding.

 




MEXICO (left) stated that the guidelines should apply to the whole range of users and providers, not just Parties.
PARTICIPATION OF STAKEHOLDERS:



COLOMBIA (left) recalled WG-I’s mandate to provide input to COP-6 informing on mutually acceptable ABS terms.




The INTERNATIONAL INDIGENOUS FORUM ON BIODIVERSITY (IIFB) stated that the guidelines disregard Deci­sion V/16 and recommendations from the IIFB on PIC, right to self-determination and rights to land and territories, and declared they had no confidence in this process. The section was referred to a contact group for further discussion.

STEPS IN THE ABS PROCESS:



On PIC, CANADA (left) suggested alternative text on obtaining PIC and approval of indigenous and local communities, respecting their legal rights on genetic resources and associated traditional knowledge.



Bozena Haczek (POLAND) (left)
suggested exclusion of taxonomic and system�atic research not related to commercialization.
OTHER PROVISIONS:



In the afternoon, delegates responded to a revised CRP.1. JAPAN (left), with THAILAND and the US, proposed deleting suggested paragraphs on: voluntary means for verification; institu�tional guarantees for compliance; market-based approaches; sanctions; and remedies for breach of terms.



On dispute resolution, IRAN and the US (right) preferred the option specifying resolution according to national or international law, while CANADA, the EC and THAILAND preferred specifying relevant contractual arrangements.
SUB-WORKING GROUP II: 
THE ROLE OF IPR IN ABS ARRANGEMENTS:





PERU (right) noted that indigenous participation within this Committee has been limited. Several delegations supported further collabora�tion with WIPO.



John Herity (CANADA) proposed an ad hoc working group to establish priorities and strengthen relationships with WIPO.




The US (left) said since only a small percentage of patents are commercialized, it would be a burden on patent examiners to review every patent application for compliance. 



Christian Prip (DENMARK) (left)
noted that its national IPR system contains an obligation on disclosure.


Hartmut Meyer of the GERMAN NGO FORUM ON ENVIRONMENT AND DEVELOPMENT (left) said that disclosure of geographic origin and PIC are important in preventing biopiracy and called for consistency of national IPR laws with the CBD.
CAPACITY BUILDING:




SWG-II then discussed a revised draft on capacity building and other approaches (UNEP/CBD/WG-ABS/SWG.II/CRP.1). Regarding key areas for capacity building, THAILAND (right) proposed reference to traditional knowledge with regard to assessment, inventory and monitoring activities.

ENB ABS-WG1 SNAPSHOTS:



ENB Summary of the 2nd Experts Panel on Access and Benefit Sharing
ENB coverage of ABS-1
ENB coverage of SBSTTA-6

CBD Secretariat web site with official documents, information for participants and Pre-Registration Form
ENB's Introduction to the CBD
World Intellectual Property Organization
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