Earth Negotiations Bulletin

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

 A Reporting Service for Environment and Development Negotiations

 


Published by the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD)

 

Vol. 9 No. 371
Monday, 18 June 2007

SUMMARY OF THE ELEVENTH REGULAR SESSION OF THE COMMISSION ON GENETIC RESOURCES FOR FOOD AND AGRICULTURE:

11-15 JUNE 2007

The eleventh regular session of the Commission on Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (CGRFA-11) was held from 11-15 June 2007, at the headquarters of the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), in Rome, Italy. It was attended by approximately 350 participants, representing 118 countries, intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations, and international agricultural research centers.

CGRFA-11 considered agenda items relating to the ongoing programmes of the Commission with regard to animal genetic resources (AnGR), plant genetic resources for food and agriculture (PGRFA), and the draft code of conduct on biotechnology. Delegates addressed the establishment and implementation of the multi-year programme of work (MYPOW), and also discussed other biodiversity-related matters under the mandate of the Commission, the FAO’s policies, programmes and activities on agricultural biodiversity, and cooperation with other international organizations.

The meeting resulted in the adoption of its report, which incorporated a number of outcomes. These included agreement on most of the major outputs and milestones of a MYPOW for the Commission, which spans its next five regular sessions. Delegates also agreed to forward to the International Technical Conference on AnGR, to be held in September 2007, in Interlaken, Switzerland, a draft Interlaken Declaration on AnGR and the elements of a Global Plan of Action for AnGR, incorporating Strategic Priorities for Action, with some parts of the text still bracketed.

CGRFA-11 was preceded by a special event on “Emerging Issues in the Management of Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture: Towards a Multi-Year Programme of Work,” which convened on 9 June 2007, also at FAO Headquarters. This event focused on the possible structure and contents of the MYPOW, with each sectorial and cross-sectorial issue addressed via expert presentations and general discussions. IISD Reporting Services’ report of this event can be found at: http://www.iisd.ca/biodiv/cgrfa11/html/ymbvol142num1e.html

A BRIEF HISTORY OF THE CGRFA

The FAO Commission on Plant Genetic Resources was established in 1983. Renamed the Commission on Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture in 1995, it currently comprises 170 countries and the European Community. The Commission’s main objectives are to ensure the conservation and sustainable use of genetic resources for food and agriculture, as well as the fair and equitable sharing of benefits derived from their use.

The Commission develops and monitors the Global System on Plant Genetic Resources and the Global Strategy for the Management of Farm AnGR. It also facilitates and oversees cooperation between the FAO and other relevant bodies, including the Conference of the Parties (COP) to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). Its regular sessions are held every two years and extraordinary sessions are convened when necessary. In 1997, the Commission established two subsidiary bodies, the Intergovernmental Technical Working Group on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (ITWG-PGR) and the Intergovernmental Technical Working Group on Animal Genetic Resources (ITWG-AnGR), to deal with specific issues in these areas. The Commission’s mandate has not yet been implemented with regard to forest and aquatic genetic resources.

PLANT GENETIC RESOURCES: The development of the Global System on Plant Genetic Resources began in 1983. The Global System contains two key elements: the Report on the State of the World’s PGRFA and the Global Plan of Action for the conservation and sustainable utilization of PGRFA. The first Report on the State of the World’s PGRFA was presented at the fourth International Technical Conference held in Leipzig, Germany, in 1996. The Global Plan of Action, adopted through the Leipzig Declaration, comprises a set of activities covering capacity building and in situ and ex situ conservation of PGRFA. The Global System also includes: the non-binding International Undertaking on PGRFA (IU); the International Code of Conduct for Plant Germplasm Collecting and Transfer; gene bank standards and guidelines; the draft code of conduct on biotechnology; crop and thematic networks; the international network of ex situ collections; and the World Information and Early Warning System.

ANIMAL GENETIC RESOURCES: Initiated in 1993, the Global Strategy for the Management of Farm AnGR provides a technical and operational framework for assisting countries. It comprises: an intergovernmental mechanism for policy development; a country-based global infrastructure to help states plan and implement national strategies; a technical support programme aimed at the country level; and a reporting and evaluation system to guide the Strategy’s implementation and facilitate collaboration. A communication and information tool, called the Domestic Animal Diversity Information System, assists the Strategy’s implementation.

CGRFA-9: The ninth session of the CGRFA, held in Rome, Italy, in October 2002, addressed issues related to animal and Plant Genetic Resources, including development of the first report on the State of the World’s AnGR, and implementation and monitoring of the Global Plan of Action on PGRFA. Delegates also revised the interim Material Transfer Agreement (MTA) between the international agricultural research centers of the Consultative Group of International Agricultural Research (CGIAR) and the FAO, and considered the status of the draft code of conduct on biotechnology.

CGRFA-10: At its tenth session, also in Rome in November 2004, the Commission agreed to hold an international technical conference on AnGR in 2007 to mark the completion of the first report on the State of the World’s AnGR. Regarding its future work, the Commission requested the Secretariat to prepare a MYPOW for submission to CGRFA-11, with a view to implementing the Commission’s full mandate in the medium and long term, which would include: a study on the status and needs of forestry, fishery and microbial genetic resources; biodiversity for food and agriculture; the agro-ecosystem approach to genetic resource conservation; and cross-sectorial matters.

ITPGR: The International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (ITPGR) entered into force on 29 June 2004, ninety days after the deposit of its 40th instrument of ratification. With 112 parties to date, the ITPGR is a legally binding instrument, which targets the conservation and sustainable use of PGRFA and equitable benefit-sharing, for sustainable agriculture and food security. The ITPGR establishes a Multilateral System for facilitated access to a specified list of PGRFA, balanced by benefit-sharing in the areas of information exchange, technology transfer, capacity building and commercial development. A list of crops contained in Annex I defines the Treaty’s scope, and includes 35 crop genera and 29 forage species.

The Treaty negotiations were based on the revision of the non-binding IU. The IU was originally founded on the principle that PGRFA should be “preserved … and freely available for use” as part of the “common heritage of mankind.” This principle was subsequently subjected to “the sovereignty of States over their plant genetic resources,” according to FAO Resolution 3/91. In April 1993, the CGRFA decided that the IU should be revised to be in harmony with the CBD. Negotiations spanned more than seven years. The last remaining issues were resolved at the 121st FAO Council meeting and at an Open-ended Working Group held under its auspices, in Rome, in October-November 2001. On 3 November 2001, the 31st FAO Conference adopted the ITPGR. After its adoption, an Interim Committee was convened to address a range of outstanding procedural and financial matters that were essential to the proper functioning of the Treaty’s Governing Body and the ITPGR itself.

First Meeting of the Interim Committee: During the first meeting of the CGRFA acting as the ITPGR Interim Committee, held in Rome in October 2002, delegates adopted rules of procedure for the Interim Committee and established an open-ended working group to propose draft rules of procedure and financial rules for the Governing Body, and draft procedures for compliance. They also adopted the terms of reference for an expert group to address the terms of a standard MTA for facilitated access, including terms for commercial benefit-sharing.

Second Meeting of the Interim Committee: The second meeting of the CGRFA acting as the ITPGR Interim Committee convened in November 2004, also in Rome. The meeting agreed to establish an open-ended working group to address the rules of procedure and financial rules for the Governing Body, the funding strategy and procedures for compliance, since the working group established by the first session of the Interim Committee did not meet due to lack of funds. Delegates also agreed on the terms of reference for an intersessional contact group to draft the standard MTA for the Governing Body’s consideration.

First Session of the ITPGR Governing Body: The first session of the ITPGR Governing Body convened from 12-16 June 2006, in Madrid, Spain. The meeting adopted a number of decisions that would make the Treaty fully operational, including the standard MTA and the funding strategy. The Governing Body further adopted: the rules of procedure, including decision making by consensus; financial rules with bracketed text on an indicative scale of voluntary contributions; a resolution establishing a compliance committee; the relationship agreement with the Global Crop Diversity Trust; a model agreement with the international agricultural research centers of the CGIAR and other international institutions; and the budget and work programme for 2006-2007.

CGRFA-11 REPORT

The eleventh regular session of the Commission on Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (CGRFA-11) opened on Monday, 11 June, with the screening of a short film about the work of the Commission. Following the film, Alexander Müller, Assistant Director-General, Natural Resources Department, FAO, welcomed participants and observed that the high attendance rate at the meeting indicated the degree of interest in the items listed for discussion. He suggested delegates were convening at a “time of opportunity and crisis,” referring to the “opportunity” provided by the possibility of adopting a MYPOW for the conservation and sustainable use of all genetic resources, alongside the “crisis” arising from the conjuncture of genetic erosion, climate change, population growth and a globalizing economy. Referring to the many important items on the meeting agenda, he urged delegates to focus on the “main questions” and to avoid becoming sidetracked by interesting but technical details.

CGRFA-10 Chair Eng Siang Lim (Malaysia) observed that CGRFA-11 was taking place against a backdrop of rapidly changing and dynamic global factors, including economic growth and changing consumption patterns. He called for global strategies to enhance agriculture and food supply, and to foster technological innovation to facilitate more diverse agricultural systems. He highlighted the importance of ensuring the existence of products that are agro-diverse and nutrient rich, the significance of niche markets for such products and the maintenance of traditional knowledge systems.

Delegates then addressed organizational matters. The Secretariat noted countries that had become members of the Commission since CGRFA-10, namely, Bhutan, the Russian Federation, Slovenia, Ukraine and the United Arab Emirates. Regarding the meeting’s Bureau, delegates elected Bert Visser (the Netherlands) as Chair, proposed by the UK for the European regional group (ERG). As Vice-Chairs, delegates elected: César Tapia Bastidas (Ecuador) for Latin America and the Caribbean; Javad Mozafari Hashtjin (Iran) for the Near East region; David Hedwood (US) for North America; Paul Trushell (Australia) for the South-West Pacific; Asmerom Kidane (Eritrea) for Africa; and Vanida Khumnirdpetch (Thailand) for Asia. Eritrea for Africa proposed, and delegates agreed, to elect Kassahun Embayne (Ethiopia) as rapporteur.

Looking ahead to the Commission’s next session, the UK for the ERG observed that the G-77 will chair CGRFA-12, and suggested that the Chair for that meeting be selected from the Near East region, since a Commission Chair has not been selected from that region for some time. Delegates also discussed the possible establishment of a small “MYPOW Committee,” as noted in the annotated agenda (CGRFA-11/07/2). Various alternatives as to its composition were proposed, before delegates agreed that the committee would consist of Bureau members, plus four members from each of the six FAO regional groups. Delegates then adopted the agenda (CGRFA-11/07/1) and timetable (CGRFA-11/07/2).

Delegates convened in plenary sessions throughout the week. In light of the large number of items on the agenda, parallel sessions convened on Tuesday afternoon and Thursday morning, and evening plenary sessions were held on Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. The MYPOW Committee convened on Wednesday evening and delegates met informally in their regional groups throughout the week. The closing plenary was held on Friday evening, at which time delegates adopted the report of the meeting (CGRFA-11/07/DR-PART 1 and 2). This report summarizes the discussions and outcomes on each agenda item.

ANIMAL GENETIC RESOURCES FOR FOOD AND AGRICULTURE

PROGRAMME OF WORK: Report of the Fourth Session of the ITWG-AnGR: On Monday, ITWG-AnGR Chair Harvey Blackburn (US) provided an overview of the report of the group’s fourth session (CGRFA-11/07/3), held in Rome from 13-15 December 2006. He explained that the primary focus of the meeting was to consider the first report on the State of the World’s AnGR for Food and Agriculture and the draft Strategic Priorities for Action for the Sustainable Use, Development and Conservation of AnGR for Food and Agriculture (Strategic Priorities). He indicated that following the fourth session of the ITWG-AnGR, a “Friends of the Chair group” convened from 26-28 March 2007, in Fribourg, Switzerland, to address unresolved issues concerning the Strategic Priorities. He introduced a document containing amendments to the Strategic Priorities proposed by the Friends of the Chair group, along with the Chair’s consolidated text of the Strategic Priorities (CGRFA-11/07/Inf.8).

Blackburn also provided a progress report on the implementation of the Global Strategy for the Management of Farm AnGR (CGRFA-11/07/9), commenting that he foresees it will lead to a Global Plan of Action for AnGR, to be adopted through an Interlaken Declaration on AnGR. In the ensuing discussion, Ecuador for Latin America and the Caribbean, supported by the UK on behalf of the ERG, welcomed the report as useful to the meeting and to the upcoming Interlaken Conference.

Final Outcome: In the report of the meeting (CGRFA-11/07/DR-PART 1), the Commission endorses the report of the ITWG-AnGR, recognizing that significant progress has been made in finalizing the report on the State of the World’s AnGR for Food and Agriculture and in advancing preparations for the International Technical Conference. It also notes that the Friends of the Chair group, following suggestions made by the ITWG-AnGR, has further developed the text of the Strategic Priorities for Action, as part of the Global Plan of Action for AnGR.

Status of Preparations for the Interlaken Conference: On Monday, Irene Hoffmann, Chief, Animal Production and Health Division, FAO, summarized a report on the status of preparations for the Interlaken Conference (CGRFA-11/07/4) and detailed its draft provisional agenda (CGRFA-11/07/4, Appendix). She highlighted the aims of the Interlaken Conference and noted that at its fourth session, the ITWG-AnGR recommended that the Interlaken Conference should result in several outcomes: the launching of the report on the State of the World’s AnGR for Food and Agriculture; adoption of a Global Plan of Action for AnGR; and adoption of an Interlaken Declaration on AnGR. She called on delegates to endorse the proposed aims and outcomes, and the draft provisional agenda, and encouraged them to urge donors to make financial resources available to support developing country participation in the conference. Eritrea suggested the Interlaken Conference be postponed to allow more time for preparations, while many others commented on its immediate importance.

Consideration of this agenda item continued on Tuesday. Delegates addressed the draft Interlaken Declaration on AnGR (CGRFA-11/07/8), presented by Switzerland, who pointed out that sections of the text needed refinement. Discussion of the declaration continued on Thursday and Friday, under the chairmanship of François Pythoud, Head of International Sustainable Agriculture Section, Federal Office of Agriculture (Switzerland). Along with many minor revisions to the draft text, a number of more substantial issues were raised during these discussions, including whether the declaration should reference intellectual property rights (IPRs) in the context of AnGR. On this point, Australia called for recognition of property rights over genetic resources, and Iran for the Near East region highlighted a lack of emphasis on IPRs for biological and genetic resources. Argentina for Latin America and the Caribbean, along with Kenya for Africa, wished to delete reference to IPRs in the context of access and benefit-sharing, stating that the Commission was not the appropriate forum to address the issue, while Germany preferred some reference. The League of Pastoral Peoples expressed opposition to individual property rights over AnGR, and Practical Action suggested the text confirm that IPRs should not contradict the objectives of access and benefit-sharing. A related issue concerned whether or not to reference livestock keepers’ rights. The UK for the ERG preferred reference to “farmers, pastoralists and breeders,” while Tanzania favored reference to “livestock keepers.” Several NGOs underscored the importance of recognizing the rights of livestock keepers.

Many developing countries called for stronger reference to the need for financial resources to facilitate the sustainable use, development and conservation of AnGR. New text to this effect was included but bracketed, after Germany for the EU said more time was needed to consider it. In the context of discussions about support and financing, the issue of incentives was also raised. Australia for the South-West Pacific requested bracketing reference to incentives, because of potential implications in the context of the Strategic Priorities. Canada and Argentina, opposed by Ecuador, suggested qualifying the reference by including the term “appropriate.” The words “appropriate” and “incentives” were both bracketed.

The issue of national responsibilities in respect of AnGR was also raised, with Latin America and the Caribbean, and others, preferring reference to “common but differentiated responsibilities,” and Canada favoring the term “common and individual responsibilities.” Canada also sought to insert text recognizing that the main responsibility for implementing the Global Plan of Action for AnGR rests with national governments, while Iran suggested this reference to national responsibility should be qualified by a text stating “according to capacity.” Both suggestions were inserted into the draft text and bracketed.

Final Outcome: In the report of the meeting (CGRFA-11/07/DR-PART 1), the Commission:

  • endorses the proposed goals, outcomes and draft provisional agenda of the International Technical Conference;

  • emphasizes the importance of ensuring the participation of two delegates from each developing country;

  • urges donors to make available the necessary funding;

  • agrees that follow-up to the International Technical Conference should be placed within the Commission’s MYPOW for CGRFA-12, with the Commission overseeing implementation of the Global Plan of Action for AnGR; and

  • agrees to forward the draft Interlaken Declaration, with some text bracketed, to the International Technical Conference.

In the draft Interlaken Declaration (CGRFA-11/07/DR-PART 2, Appendix C, Annex 3), signatories adopt the Global Plan of Action for AnGR and undertake to honor commitments to taking the necessary steps to implement the Global Plan of Action, in accordance with national capacities. The draft declaration includes many paragraphs recognizing the essential roles and values of AnGR for food and agriculture, and the importance of utilizing and maintaining the diversity of AnGR.

Various sections of the text remain bracketed, including text on:

  • noting that the Interlaken Conference is a major contribution to establishing an effective international framework for the sustainable use, development and conservation of AnGR for food and agriculture, and world food security;

  • recognizing that states have sovereign rights over their AnGR for food and agriculture;

  • common and “individual” or “differentiated” responsibilities in respect of the sustainable management of AnGR for food and agriculture;

  • prioritizing and facilitating access and benefit-sharing;

  • suggesting immediate action should be taken to conserve endangered animal species and breeds in their centers of diversity;

  • recognizing the role of “appropriate incentives” for national and international AnGR programmes, to increase world food security and contribute to sustainable rural development;

  • acknowledging that the provision of new and additional resources can make a substantial difference in the world’s ability to address the sustainable use, development and conservation of AnGR for food and agriculture, and recommending that concrete steps be taken to ensure a significant increase in financial resources to support the implementation of the Global Plan of Action by developing countries and countries with economies in transition; and

  • recognizing that the main responsibility for implementation the Global Plan of Action rests with national governments, according to their capacity.

The State of the World’s Animal Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture: On Monday, Irene Hoffmann outlined progress in the preparation of the report on the State of the World’s AnGR for Food and Agriculture (CGRFA-11/07/5). She emphasized the global interdependence of genetic resources and the value of transboundary breeds for food security, and highlighted threats to genetic diversity, including: changes in production systems; loss of range lands; inappropriate breeding programmes; the unplanned introduction of exotic breeds; and subsidies. She also discussed the need for: enhancing knowledge on unknown breeds; scientific guidance to facilitate decision making in the absence of complete information; early warning and response mechanisms on epidemics; and the absence of tools for prioritizing breed conservation. She concluded by outlining three recommendations contained in the progress report regarding how to proceed with finalization of the State of the World report.

Delegates welcomed the report, made observations and posed questions to Hoffmann. Iran suggested the holding of regional consultations on the State of the World report, while China was joined by Ecuador, Guinea, Malaysia and Syria in calling for the report to be translated into all the FAO’s official languages and others.

Kenya for Africa noted that the description of “breed” varies between regions and “remains elusive,” India called for capacity building for breed identification in developing countries and Sudan highlighted the importance of international cooperation on transboundary AnGR. The UK on behalf of the ERG and supported by Iran, called for a shift in emphasis from the conservation of AnGR to sustainable use and management. Hanwant Singh Rathore, a farmer from Rajasthan, India, representing civil society, described factors hindering the preservation of AnGR in his local area and called for livestock keepers’ rights to be included in the Global Plan of Action for AnGR. The CGIAR called for an empirical approach to policy making and highlighted the relevance of the ecosystem approach. The International Indian Treaty Council called on the Commission to protect the genetic diversity fostered by indigenous peoples over thousands of years.

Final Outcome: In the report of the meeting (CGRFA-11/07/DR-PART 1), the Commission requests the FAO to print the report on the State of the World’s AnGR for Food and Agriculture for presentation to the International Technical Conference on AnGR, and recommends to that conference that it welcome the report as an authoritative survey of the sector, upon which future actions for the sustainable management of AnGR can be based. The Commission further recommends that the FAO make the report widely available, notes the importance of translating the report into all official FAO languages and urges donors to make available the resources necessary for this.

Draft Elements of a Global Plan of Action – Strategic Priorities: Discussion of the draft elements of a Global Plan of Action for AnGR commenced on Monday, with Irene Hoffmann introducing a document (CGRFA-11/07/6) addressing: the preparation of the Strategic Priorities; possible steps for their finalization; guidance sought from the Commission; and the draft text of the Strategic Priorities, as contained in Appendix 1. She explained that the Strategic Priorities were not ranked in order of importance, rather, were all equally important options for governments to consider undertaking.

Delegates decided to consider the Strategic Priorities by working from the Chair’s consolidated text (CGRFA-11/07/Inf.8, Appendix 1). They addressed the text section by section from Tuesday to Thursday. During the discussion of the draft text, a number of contentious issues emerged. Among these was the concept of livestock keepers’ rights. Zambia and Uganda, for Africa, proposed insertion of introductory text recognizing that “livestock keepers have traditional rights with regard to the use of these resources,” and noting the “additional rights of livestock keepers.” Other countries opposed these proposals. In particular, Canada for North America observed that such rights had not been defined or articulated internationally.

Another key issue concerned the mobilization of financial resources for the implementation of the Strategic Priorities. Countries from the Latin American and Caribbean, African and Near East regions were generally insistent on the need for greater references to the importance of mobilizing resources for implementation, which they felt were not adequately addressed in the draft. The US, Finland for the EU and Canada, among others, preferred to minimize reference to the mobilization of financial resources. Delegates agreed to bracket the Strategic Priority on strengthening efforts to mobilize resources.

Another issue concerned reference to IPRs, with many countries supporting the deletion of all references to IPRs, in particular in text relating to access and benefit-sharing, and modalities for facilitating the use of genetic material stored in ex situ gene banks. On another matter, Australia consistently opposed reference to incentives and several delegates stressed that the meeting was not the appropriate forum to address incentive-related issues that are considered in other forums, such as the World Trade Organization. On the Strategic Priority Area of conservation, points of contention included: whether to reference differences between developed and developing countries regarding a focus on a small number of high-output breeds versus the transformation of traditional systems into external input-oriented breed systems; and whether the text should indicate that there is a preference, in most developing countries, for in situ conservation, and that ex situ conservation should be linked to in situ conservation, where appropriate.

Final Outcome: In the report of the meeting (CGRFA-11/07/DR-PART 2), the Commission agrees to forward the draft Strategic Priorities, as bracketed and appended to the meeting report, to the International Technical Conference, for consideration as part of the Global Plan of Action for AnGR.

The text comprises 23 Strategic Priorities, organized around four Strategic Priority Areas: characterization, inventory and monitoring of trends and associated risks; sustainable use and development; conservation; and policies, institutions and capacity building. There is an introduction to each of the Strategic Priority Areas, along with a long-term goal. After the articulation of each Strategic Priority, there is text setting out its rationale, along with a list of possible actions to be undertaken in relation to that priority.

Several sections remain bracketed. Under Strategic Priority 4 on establishing national species and breed development strategies and programmes, in an action concerning long-term planning and strategic breeding programmes, text as to “cooperation with other countries” and “transboundary” programmes remains bracketed. The entire text of Strategic Priority 23 on the mobilization of resources remains bracketed, including its rationale and list of actions.

Draft Elements of a Global Plan of Action – Implementation and Financing: On Tuesday and Thursday, delegates addressed implementation and financing of the Global Plan of Action for AnGR. Irene Hoffmann presented a document on implementation (CGRFA-11/07/7), along with the Global Strategy for the Management of Farm AnGR (CGRFA-11/07/9).

Many developing country delegates highlighted the importance of strong recommendations on funding for implementation of the Global Action Plan for AnGR. Canada, supported by the US, requested discussing the issue of funding after discussion of the draft Interlaken Declaration, drawing attention to overlaps between the Strategic Priorities and the declaration. Finland for the ERG asserted that consideration of implementation and financing at this time was valid, recalling that the ITWG-AnGR noted the need for a Global Plan of Action for AnGR and a clear plan on implementation and financing. Delegates then addressed the text, most of which remained bracketed. Canada proposed various deletions due to perceived overlaps with the Strategic Priorities and the Interlaken Declaration, while the ERG proposed, and delegates agreed, additional text for consolidation into the existing text on implementation (CGRFA-11/07/7, Appendix 1). Among other issues, this text states that:

  • countries should promote the implementation of the Global Plan of Action for AnGR, particularly through national actions, and these actions should be complemented, as appropriate, by international cooperation in order to provide a coherent framework for exchange of information and capacity building;

  • the FAO should pursue with the governing bodies of relevant international mechanisms, funds and bodies, means for contributing to the implementation of the Global Plan of Action for AnGR; and

  • developed countries should attach due attention to the implementation of activities within the Strategic Priority Areas of the Global Plan of Action for AnGR through bilateral, regional and multilateral cooperation, and voluntary contributions may also be provided, in particular by the private sector and NGOs, into an appropriate mechanism, such as a Trust Account at the FAO.

Final Outcome: In the report of the meeting (CGRFA-11/07/DR-PART 2), the Commission agrees to forward the text on Implementation and Financing of the Global Plan of Action for AnGR, within brackets and as appended to the meeting report, to the International Technical Conference on AnGR for further negotiation.

The document on implementation and financing of the Global Plan of Action for AnGR consists of 23 paragraphs, the majority of which remain bracketed. The document:

  • highlights that the Global Plan of Action provides an international framework for advancing efforts to ensure the sustainable use, development and conservation of AnGR for food and agriculture, which require substantial, long-term strategic investments for AnGR programmes;

  • states that the main responsibility for implementing the Global Plan of Action rests with national governments, with each country determining its own priorities;

  • recognizes the importance of developing and transferring technologies related to the inventory, characterization sustainable use, development and conservation of AnGR;

  • states that developed countries should undertake to facilitate access to, and transfer of, appropriate technologies;

  • states that the non-sustainable flow of financial resources to developing countries and countries with economies in transition causes an intermittent level of activities on the sustainable use, development and conservation of AnGR for food and agriculture;

  • states that the full implementation of the Global Plan of Action would require significant increases in activities and investments;

  • recognizes the need for additional sources of funding to support priority activities and to overcome gaps in capacity;

  • recognizes that the major multilateral and bilateral funding and development institutions should be invited to examine ways and means of supporting the implementation of the Global Plan of Action; and

  • states that the FAO should ensure adequate regular support of the implementation of the Global Plan of Action.

FUTURE WORK OF THE ITWG-AnGR: On Friday, under the agenda item on the future work of the ITWG-AnGR, regional groups made nominations for representatives to the working group.

Final Outcome: In the report of the meeting (CGRFA-11/07/DR-PART 1), the Commission:

  • agrees that the ITWG-AnGR should meet prior to the next regular session of the Commission;

  • requests that the ITWG-AnGR advise the Commission on options for evaluating progress in implementing the Global Plan of Action for AnGR, including suggesting potential criteria and indicators to assess implementation progress;

  • requests that the ITWG-AnGR recommend the form and content of future status and trends reports on AnGR, and options for responding to the identification of breeds that are at risk; and

  • requests the FAO to continue to develop technical guidelines in relation to the sustainable use and development of AnGR in low- and medium-input production systems, to further develop methods for improving inventory and characterization of AnGR, to provide permanent support to further develop the Domestic Animal Diversity Information System, and to report on progress at the next session of the ITWG-AnGR.

The Commission nominated as new members of the ITWG-AnGR: Algeria, Central African Republic, Guinea, Namibia and Uganda (Africa); Bhutan, China, India, Indonesia and Thailand (Asia); Finland, France, Germany, Switzerland and Turkey (Europe); Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Jamaica and Uruguay (Latin America and the Caribbean); Jordan, Sudan and Syria (Near East); Canada and the US (North America); and Australia and Papua New Guinea (South-West Pacific) (CGRFA-11/07/DR-PART 1, Appendix 3).

PLANT GENETIC RESOURCES FOR FOOD AND AGRICULTURE

PROGRAMME OF WORK: Delegates addressed progress since CGRFA-10 on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Report of the Third Session of the ITWG-PGR: ITWG-PGR Chair Zofia Bulińska-Radomska (Poland) presented the report of the third session of the ITWG-PGR (CGRFA-11/07/10). In the ensuing discussion, Egypt urged the Global Crop Diversity Trust to contribute to capacity building in developing countries. Ecuador for Latin America and the Caribbean called on donors to provide technical and financial resources, while Angola for Africa highlighted under-funding of the ITPGR. Kenya commented on underutilized crops. India, supported by Bhutan, called for recognizing the importance of local seed systems. The UK for the ERG suggested clarifying the division of responsibilities between the Commission and the ITPGR Governing Body. In response, Alexander Müller undertook to avoid any “double structures.”

Final Outcome: In the report of the meeting (CGRFA-11/07/DR-PART 1), the Commission adopts the ITWG-PGR report, recommending that in order to avoid duplication of efforts, and subject to decisions of the ITPGR Governing Body, a cooperation mechanism between the Commission and the Governing Body be established, including in relation to work on the supporting components of the ITPGR, in particular the Global Plan of Action (GPA), the Facilitating Mechanism and further implementation of the new monitoring approach. The Commission also requests that attention be given to work on crops essential for food security, including underutilized crops, and that this be considered in the context of its MYPOW.

Follow-up to the Recommendations of the Commission and the ITWG-PGR: Arturo Martínez, Chief, Seed and Plant Genetic Resources Service, FAO, presented the follow-up to the recommendations of the Commission and the ITWG-PGR regarding PGRFA (CGRFA-11/07/11). Following the presentation, the UK for the ERG supported information-sharing and cooperation between the Commission and the ITPGR Governing Body. On gene banks, the CGIAR emphasized the importance of promoting high standards and Nigeria called for support to African national and regional efforts. Norway provided an update on the Svalbard Global Seed Vault, and India highlighted the importance of farm-saved seeds for developing countries.

Final Outcome: In the report of the meeting (CGRFA-11/07/DR-PART 1), the Commission:

  • recommends that the FAO further review the components of the Global System, including in light of further cooperation with the ITPGR;

  • requests the Secretariat to report on progress with the Facilitating Mechanism at the next session of the Commission;

  • calls upon donors to provide additional funding to allow the maximum number of countries to participate in monitoring processes;

  • confirms the importance of strengthening capacity in plant breeding, including through a participatory approach, and strengthening capacities in biotechnologies, seed systems and initiatives, stressing in this context the need for a balanced approach between the use of traditional and modern technologies;

  • endorses the recommendation of the ITWG-PGR to request the FAO to prepare an options paper to strengthen plant breeding in developing countries, identifying new opportunities for effective partnerships between the public and private sectors, with the involvement of the CGIAR Future Harvest Centers;

  • reiterates its recommendation that a gap analysis of the seed sector be prepared;

  • recommends that existing information systems be progressively improved to include crop-specific nutrient composition and consumption data;

  • decides that dissemination of cultivar-specific nutrient-composition data should be pursued in the context of the cross-cutting initiative on biodiversity for food and nutrition in the CBD’s Programme of Work on Agricultural Biodiversity;

  • stresses the critical importance of attracting financial resources to support the development and implementation of all elements of the GPA;

  • emphasizes the need for other contributions to support in situ conservation, on-farm management, and utilization, in particular;

  • supports the further updating and improvement of the World Information and Early Warning System on PGRFA; and

  • commends the Government of Norway for its valuable contribution to the long-term conservation of the world’s PGRFA via the Svaldbard Seed Facility.

Report on Progress in Preparation of the Second Report on the State of the World’s PGRFA: On Tuesday, Linda Collette, Senior Agricultural Officer, Seed and Plant Genetic Resources Service, FAO, presented on preparation of the second report on the State of the World’s PGRFA (CGRFA-11/07/12). In the ensuing discussion, the UK for the ERG said it would welcome a second report that focused on developments since the first State of the World report, while Canada suggested the second report focus on gaps, needs and priorities. A number of countries, including Ecuador for Latin America and the Caribbean, and Iran, emphasized that the report should draw on as many country reports as possible, but that this should not delay the work of the ITPGR. Angola for Africa called for assistance to allow African countries to participate as fully as possible. Shivaji Pandey, Director, Plant Production and Protection Department, FAO, concluded the session by noting that the relevant FAO divisions would work purposefully towards a timely second report.

On Wednesday, Chair Visser proposed a revised timetable for the preparation of the second report as it relates to the GPA: receipt by the FAO of all national reports and inputs to the State of the World by July 2008; a detailed review of the first draft and consideration of the elements of a plan for updating the rolling GPA at the fourth session of the ITWG-PGR in 2009; consideration of the State of the World and adoption of a detailed plan for the process of updating the GPA at CGRFA-12, in the third quarter of 2009; revision of the draft for the updated GPA at the fifth session of the ITWG-PGR; and finalization of the GPA during a high-level ceremony at CGRFA-13.

Canada stressed that although the report is intended to be an update of the 1996 report, there should not be any short cuts taken in its production. Ecuador welcomed the new timetable and urged the highest number of countries to engage with the process. Shivaji Pandey called for extra-budgetary support to enable developing countries to provide national reports and urged countries that have the resources to make their submissions as soon as possible.

Final Outcome: In the report of the meeting (CGRFA-11/07/DR-PART 1), the Commission:

  • agrees that the report on the State of the World’s PGRFA needs to be updated with the best data and information available and with the largest participation of countries, and should focus on changes since 1996;

  • stresses that mobilization of financial resources is paramount to both enable the full participation of developing countries and to strengthen their capacity;

  • requests that the ITWG-PGR, at its fourth meeting in 2009, review and guide the finalization of the draft of the second report;

  • recommends that the FAO make available an updated draft at CGRFA-12;

  • requests that the FAO also submit to CGRFA-12 a proposed plan for the process of updating;

  • agrees that the updated rolling GPA would be considered at CGFRA-13, on the basis of the updated report of the State of the World’s PGRFA; and

  • requests that its process regarding updating the report and the GPA be provided to the next session of the ITPGR Governing Body, so that it might make comments and suggestions.

FUTURE WORK OF THE ITWG-PGR: On Friday, under the agenda item on the future work of the ITWG-PGR, regional groups made nominations for representatives to the working group.

Final Outcome: In the report of the meeting (CGRFA-11/07/DR-PART 1), the Commission agrees that the ITWG-PGR meet prior to its next regular session, and requests the ITWG-PGR to focus its work to review the first draft of the updated State of the World’s PGRFA, and to consider the elements of a plan for updating the GPA.

The Commission nominated as new members of the ITWG-PGR: Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire, Kenya, Morocco and Tanzania (Africa); Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Pakistan and Sri Lanka (Asia); Norway, Poland, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland (Europe); Brazil, Cuba, Ecuador, Guatemala and Uruguay (Latin America and the Caribbean); Egypt, Iran and Yemen (Near East); Canada and the US (North America); and Australia and Samoa (South-West Pacific) (CGRFA-11/07/DR-PART 1, Appendix 4).

DRAFT CODE OF CONDUCT ON BIOTECHNOLOGY

On Wednesday, Chair Visser introduced the item on progress on the draft code of conduct on biotechnology and guiding principles for the CGIAR Future Harvest Centers to address the possibility of unintentional presence of transgenes in ex situ collections.

Progress on the Draft Code of Conduct on Biotechnology: The Secretariat reported on a study of issues, gaps and duplications in relation to the code of conduct on biotechnology as it relates to genetic resources for food and agriculture (CGRFA-11/07/13). He asked the Commission to indicate which of the 14 fields identified in the report should be further developed, and to advise on the means by which the work should be carried forward. Iran stressed that the code of conduct should promote the use of biotechnology. Ecuador for Latin America and the Caribbean, supported by Thailand for Asia, called for the code of conduct to be given in-depth consideration at a future session of the Commission, with the US urging the Commission to engage with the issues in the intersessional period. The UK for the ERG suggested that the Commission concentrate on those issues that fall most directly under its mandate. Nigeria for Africa stated that having missed out on the green revolution, it is keen to be included in the “gene revolution,” and Australia expressed support for FAO capacity-building programmes in the area of biosafety.

Pandey underscored the need to build capacity in biotechnology and stressed the imperative of attracting funding. Chair Visser concluded by explaining that the Secretariat would conduct regional consultations to ascertain priority areas for work ahead of the Commission’s next regular session.

Final Outcome: In the report of the meeting (CGRFA-11/07/DR-PART 1), the Commission:

  • requests a report on the FAO’s policy and technical assistance on biotechnology for food and agriculture, and matters relevant to the draft code of conduct, guidelines or other approaches;

  • agrees that more time is needed to address the complexity of the issues involved, but that urgent action is needed to build relevant capacities in developing countries and countries with economies in transition;

  • requests the ITWG-PGR and the ITWG-AnGR to consider those issues that will require further development and make appropriate recommendations to the Commission; and

  • requests the Secretariat to contact regions for their inputs.

Guiding Principles for the Unintentional Presence of Transgenes: Emile Frison, Bioversity International, presented the guiding principles for the development of policies for the CGIAR centers to address the possibility of the unintentional presence of transgenes in ex situ collections (CGRFA-11/07/14 Rev 1). He explained that the principles had been developed to maintain the integrity of genetic resources in centers of origin and in the collections of the CGIAR centers, adding that crop-specific guidelines would also be formulated. He also noted a focus on appropriate management procedures to maintain the genetic integrity of collections.

Kenya highlighted the lack of capacity in developing country regions for maintaining the integrity of collections. Nigeria raised the issue of CGIAR centers in his country circumventing national programmes to test genetic material and Emile Frison responded that CGIAR centers are required to follow stipulated international procedures for the use and handling of biotechnology. Argentina, supported by Brazil, expressed concern regarding references to “risk evaluation” and “exotic” in the context of genes, which he said were applied differently in other international agreements. He suggested either postponing consideration of the agenda item, or adopting only the second guiding principle, which states that centers should develop, document and communicate crop-specific guidelines for best gene bank management practices. The UK for the ERG, and Australia expressed concern about the actions encapsulated in the second guiding principle, while Zambia stressed the need to maintain the integrity of gene banks.

Final Outcome: In the report of the meeting (CGRFA-11/07/DR-PART 1), the Commission:

  • reaffirms the importance of maintaining the integrity of genetic resources and avoiding any introgression of trangenes into ex situ collections;

  • stresses that the integrity of accessions is not only threatened by transgenes but also unsuitable gene bank management practices and genetic erosion;

  • agrees on the relevance of the guiding principles as a basis for crop-specific guidelines; and

  • agrees that, in order to ensure synergy and complementarity, relevant sections of the guiding principles need to be considered in due time in the development of the draft code of conduct on biotechnology, if and when the code is updated.

OTHER BIODIVERSITY-RELATED MATTERS UNDER THE MANDATE OF THE COMMISSION: STATUS AND NEEDS

SECTORIAL AND CROSS-SECTORIAL MATTERS: Sectorial and cross-sectorial matters were addressed on Wednesday and Friday. Many of the issues related to this agenda item were also addressed in the context of discussions on the MYPOW.

Forest Genetic Resources: José Antonio Prado, Director, Forest Management Division, FAO, presented on the world’s forest genetic resources, status and needs (CGRFA-11/07/15.1). Many countries welcomed the report. Australia, with Tonga, called for support for capacity building in the South-West Pacific. Cuba suggested that the definition of forests include non-timber forest species. Ethiopia for Africa highlighted the importance of forest genetic resources in its region, as well as the link between forest genetic resources and local community livelihoods. The UK for the ERG suggested the Commission use existing data when preparing the report on the State of the World’s Forest Genetic Resources, and Norway added that it should be based on the work of national and regional networks. Canada said it expected the report to be launched by CGRFA-14, Brazil suggested creating an intergovernmental working group to promote representation and participation, and Switzerland stated that it expected work on this matter to be funded from the core budget. José Antonio Prado concluded by underscoring the Commission’s intention to work collaboratively on the report.

Final Outcome: In the report of the meeting (CGRFA-11/07/DR-PART 1), the Commission:

  • underscores the comparative advantage of the FAO and the importance of its work;

  • approves the inclusion in its MYPOW of the State of the World’s Forest Genetic Resources;

  • adopts the steps proposed for its preparation;

  • recommends that the FAO Committee on Forestry and the FAO Regional Forestry Commissions should be fully involved in the preparation of the State of the World’s Forest Genetic Resources, which should be undertaken in synergy with relevant regional and global programmes, and instruments.

Aquatic Genetic Resources: Ichiro Nemura, Assistant Director-General, Fisheries and Aquaculture Department, FAO, introduced the item on aquatic genetic resources, commenting on the importance of the sector’s contribution to meeting food needs. A Senior Officer from the FAO Aquaculture and Fisheries Department provided an overview of the world’s aquatic genetic resources, status and needs (CGRFA-11/07/15.2), and introduced a paper on “Status and Trends in Aquatic Genetic Resources: A Basis for International Policy” (Background Study Paper No. 37).

The UK for the ERG observed that information on aquatic genetic resources is incomplete, scattered and held in non-standardized formats, and endorsed the three elements identified for prioritization: improved information systems for aquatic genetic resources; development of an international policy framework for management of aquatic genetic resources through analysis of the FAO code of conduct for responsible fisheries; and assessing the status of genetic resources for aquaculture and capture fisheries and capacities for their management. Opposed by Brazil, he said a State of the World report should be expertise-led as opposed to country-driven. The CGIAR welcomed the inclusion of aquatic genetic resources in the MYPOW. The US noted the need to move forward on the State of the World report and to identify gaps and priorities in the code of conduct for responsible fisheries. Argentina, Brazil, Canada and Cameroon opposed the development of an international framework for the management of aquatic genetic resources.

Angola discussed aquaculture and capture fisheries in the context of climate change adaptation strategies. Canada stressed that funding for FAO activities in the fish and aquatic genetic resources sector should come from the core budget and said duplication with the activities of other institutions should be avoided. Tonga drew attention to the vulnerability of small island states to extreme weather events and related impacts on aquatic resources. The Network for Aquaculture Centers in Asia-Pacific gave an overview of its activities relating to research and development on aquatic genetic resources in the Pacific region and endorsed inclusion of aquatic genetic resources in the MYPOW.

Ichiro Nemura concluded by discussing constraints with regard to the core budget and noted that activities in the context of aquatic genetic resources would be subject to extra-budgetary support.

Final Outcome: In the report of the meeting (CGRFA-11/07/DR- PART 1), the Commission:

  • takes note of the analysis and general conclusions presented in the documents entitled the “World’s Aquatic Genetic Resources: Status and Needs,” and “Trends in Aquatic Genetic Resources: a Basis for International Policy”;

  • requests that coverage of aquatic genetic resources under the MYPOW be undertaken with, inter alia, the FAO Committee on Fisheries, the CBD, and the UN informal consultative process on oceans and the law of the sea; and

  • agrees that improving the collection and sharing of information on aquatic genetic resources is of high priority.

Micro-organisms and Insects: The Secretariat provided an overview of the biodiversity of micro-organisms and insects for food and agriculture, status and needs (CGRFA-11/07/15.3), along with a background study on the sustainable management of biodiversity for biological control in food and agriculture (Background Study Paper No. 38) and a paper on technical issues relating to agricultural microbial genetic resources (CGRFA-11/07/Circ.3). Uruguay presented the results of a regional symposium on micro-organism genetic resources in Latin America and the Caribbean (CGRFA-11/07/Circ.2), outlining recommendations for future action in this sector.

In the ensuing discussion, many delegates stressed the importance of this sector and the need to understand more about its impacts on food and agriculture. They also expressed general support for the scoping studies proposed in the status and needs document and the proposed timing for their completion; suggested that these studies distinguish between organisms that either positively or negatively impact on food production and processing; and noted the need for coordination between the FAO and other entities working in this area. Argentina, Uruguay and several others suggested invertebrates should be dealt with separately from micro-organisms, given their differing nature and impacts. Delegates from Africa, and Latin America and the Caribbean, underscored the importance of capacity building to facilitate developing countries’ activities in this area. The Secretariat responded that delegates had provided helpful comments as to how work in this area should move ahead.

Final Outcome: In the report of the meeting (CGRFA-11/07/DR-PART 1), the Commission:

  • decides to consider invertebrates and micro-organisms separately in its MYPOW;

  • agrees to a timeline for organizing future work to address micro-organisms and invertebrates at CGRFA-14;

  • agrees to consider further analysis and background studies, in preparation for CGRFA-14, on the basis of the scoping study to be provided at CGRFA-12; and

  • recommends that the FAO continue to provide support to countries, in particular developing countries, to assist them to apply the ecosystem approach.

Ecosystem Approach to Biodiversity for Food and Agriculture: The Secretariat introduced a paper on status and needs in relation to the ecosystem approach applied to food and agriculture (CGRFA-11/07/15.4). Discussion of this paper was subsumed within consideration of the other issues under this agenda item and within discussion of the MYPOW.

Final Outcome: In the report of the meeting (CGRFA-11/07/DR-PART 1), the Commission recommends that the FAO continue to advance the application of the ecosystem approach across its diverse programmes and activities in relation to biodiversity for food and agriculture. It also recommends that the FAO continue to provide support to countries, in particular developing countries, to assist them in applying the ecosystem approach.

International Cross-sectorial Policy Matters on Genetic Resources: The Secretariat introduced a paper on status and needs in relation to cross-sectorial international policy issues and genetic resources (CGRFA-11/07/15.5). Discussion of this paper was subsumed within consideration of the other issues under this agenda item and within discussion of the MYPOW.

Final Outcome: In the report of the meeting (CGRFA-11/07/DR-PART 1), the Commission:

  • agrees on the importance of considering access and benefit-sharing in relation to all components of biodiversity for food and agriculture;

  • decides that work in this field should be an early task within its MYPOW;

  • requests the Secretariat to continue to keep under continuous review developments in all relevant forums; and

  • requests the FAO to continue work on targets and indicators for food and agriculture in cooperation with other relevant organizations.

SYNERGIES AND COOPERATION AT THE INTERNATIONAL LEVEL

On Thursday, Asmerom Kidane, Ministry of Agriculture, Eritrea, chaired a session on synergies and cooperation at the international level.

COOPERATION WITH OTHER INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS AND AGREEMENTS: Cooperative Mechanisms between the Commission and the ITPGR Governing Body: The Secretariat introduced a paper on mechanisms for cooperation between the Commission and the ITPGR Governing Body (CGRFA-11/07/16), noting that both the Commission and the ITPGR Governing Body had expressed willingness to coordinate their activities. He discussed the Global System on PGRFA, highlighting that it includes a number of “supporting components” for the ITPGR, such as the GPA and the State of the World’s PGRFA. Observing that the Treaty is “at a crucial and formative stage,” ITPGR Secretary Shakeel Bhatti identified urgent policy issues and noted there is inadequate financial and human resources for carrying out work under the Treaty.

Many parties supported strengthening coordination between the Commission and the ITPGR, and highlighted budgetary constraints to implementation of the Treaty’s objectives. The UK for the ERG stressed the need to avoid duplication of work, and called for a joint statement of intention to be adopted that specifies the areas and modalities of cooperation. Japan noted that it is not a party to the ITPGR and requested clarification of a Treaty provision noting that recipients shall not claim any intellectual property or other rights that limit the facilitated access to the PGRFA or their genetic parts or components, in the form received from the Multilateral System (Article 12.3(d)). Shakeel Bhatti confirmed that the issue of IPRs under the ITPGR is being examined. He also informed that parties had contributed only 10% of the contributions to the Treaty Core Administrative Budget for the 2006-2007 period.

Final Outcome: In the report of the meeting (CGRFA-11/07/DR-PART 1), the Commission recommends that its Secretariat prepare an analysis of possible areas of collaboration among the ITPGR, the Global Crop Diversity Trust, the CGIAR and the Commission, to be presented at CGRFA-12, and requests the Secretariat to organize sessions of the Commission, as far as is practicable, back-to-back with those of the ITPGR Governing Body.

Cooperation with the CBD: Linda Collette presented on cooperation with the CBD, including in relation to the CBD’s Programme of Work on Agricultural Biological Diversity (CGRFA-11/07/17 and Inf.16). She noted that the Commission may wish to propose to the CBD COP the establishment of a joint programme of work on agricultural biodiversity, among other things. She also highlighted cooperative work between the two bodies on access and benefit-sharing regarding genetic resources for food and agriculture. The CBD Secretariat provided further details of cooperative activities, and delegates highlighted the benefits of collaboration based on equal terms, and the need to send a clear message to national agencies on the importance of integrating relevant national programmes.

Final Outcome: In the report of the meeting (CGRFA-11/07/DR-PART 1), the Commission:

  • recommends further strengthening of cooperation between the FAO and its Commission, and the CBD, acknowledging the need for complementarity and mutual support;

  • notes that the resumption of the practice of seconding an FAO Officer to the CBD Secretariat would enhance such cooperation; and

  • recommends a joint work plan on biodiversity for food and agriculture between the FAO and its Commission, and the CBD Secretariat, and requests this decision be forwarded to the CBD COP.

Cooperation with WIPO: Presenting a document on cooperation with the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) (CGRFA-11/07/18), the Secretariat explained that it sought guidance on further methods for strengthening mutual cooperation. Following the presentation, the UK for the ERG highlighted the growing relevance of IPRs to biotechnology.

Final Outcome: In the report of the meeting (CGRFA-11/07/DR-PART 1), the Commission welcomes continued collaboration with WIPO, recognizing the need to continue collaboration in areas of mutual interest.

Reports from International Organizations: The Secretariat presented reports from international organizations on their policies, programmes and activities on agricultural biological diversity, including reports from: the UN and other intergovernmental organizations (CGRFA-11/07/19.1); the international agricultural research centers of the CGIAR (CGRFA-11/07/19.2); and international NGOs (CGRFA-11/07/19.3). Following the presentation, the CGIAR suggested two areas of cross-sectorial activity that should be included in the MYPOW, and the World Organization for Animal Health highlighted its work with vaccination programmes and aspects of animal cloning. Practical Action praised the Commission’s emphasis of the ecosystem approach and highlighted the importance of livestock keepers’ rights.

Final Outcome: In the report of the meeting (CGRFA-11/07/DR-PART 1), the Commission decides that in the context of the MYPOW, future consultations with such organizations would focus on matters being addressed at each session, and recognizes the need to address climate change and agriculture in its future work.

CONSIDERATION OF THE FAO’S POLICIES, PROGRAMMES AND ACTIVITIES ON BIODIVERSITY FOR FOOD AND AGRICULTURE: On Tuesday, the Secretariat introduced three reports to assist delegates with their consideration of the FAO’s policies, programmes and activities on biodiversity for food and agriculture. These reports concerned sectorial matters (CGRFA-11/07/20.1), cross-sectorial matters (CGRFA-11/07/20.2) and Priority Areas for Inter-disciplinary Action (CGRFA-11/07/20.3).

Delegates expressed support and appreciation for the work referred to in the reports and Tanzania outlined activities being undertaken in his country under the FAO Farmers’ Field School Programme. The Secretariat took note of Canada’s comment on the need for an overarching strategic programme of activities to guide work in this area, along with the observation by Brazil that some of the issues referred to in the three reports are politically sensitive. He highlighted efforts within the Commission and the FAO to move toward “true inter-sectoriality,” and noted the need for the Commission to consider how to move forward on addressing climate change.

Final Outcome: In the report of the meeting (CGRFA-11/07/DR-PART 1), the Commission requests that the FAO carry on promoting inter-disciplinary approaches and recommends that the FAO continue to focus on access and benefit-sharing for genetic resources for food and agriculture in an integrated and inter-disciplinary manner, and give further attention to the use of the unintentional presence of transgenes in cultivated crops.

MULTI-YEAR PROGRAMME OF WORK

The Commission’s draft MYPOW was addressed in a meeting of the MYPOW Committee on Wednesday evening and in plenary on Thursday and Friday.

The MYPOW Committee was chaired by CGRFA-11 Chair Bert Visser. At its meeting, the six regional groups were each represented by four countries, and many other delegates attended as observers. Discussions focused on PGRFA, AnGR and forest genetic resources, in relation to three questions: which issues to prioritize within each sectorial and cross-sectorial matter; the timing and means by which preparatory activities for each aspect of the MYPOW should be commenced; and the organizations with which the Commission and the FAO should cooperate in relation to each sectorial programme and cross-sectorial matter. By the close of the session, committee members had identified priorities, and related timing, for work in relation to the sectorial programmes of PGRFA, AnGR and forest genetic resources.

On Thursday, Chair Visser introduced the draft MYPOW (CGRFA-11/07/21), a compendium of ideas and comments on the MYPOW (CGRFA-11/07/21 Add.1) and a document prepared by the MYPOW Committee entitled “Sectorial Programmes.” While some delegates said that they were ready to negotiate from the latter document, others maintained that they were either unprepared or unable to engage with the level of detail contained in the document prepared by the MYPOW Committee. Chair Visser proposed, and delegates agreed to, work instead from the table of “major outputs and milestones in the Commission’s MYPOW,” contained in the draft MYPOW prepared by the Secretariat (CGRFA-11/07/21, Table 1).

Delegates worked through this table, considering at which sessions of the Commission matters relating to PGRFA, AnGR, aquatic genetic resources, forest genetic resources, micro-organisms and invertebrates, cross-sectorial matters, and management of the MYPOW should be addressed. Delegates reached general agreement on all aspects of this table, except for the cross-sectorial matter on biotechnology, most of which remained bracketed.

Final Outcome: In the report of the meeting (CGRFA-11/07/DR-PART 2), the Commission:

  • recognizes the need to implement its full mandate through a planned and staged approach, and identifies and adopts the major outputs and milestones to be addressed in its MYPOW over its next five sessions, as provided in the appended table;

  • stresses the need to develop a detailed plan to achieve the agreed outputs and milestones, identifying the required process, including identification of the relevant international organizations with which to cooperate;

  • requests its Secretary and Chair to develop a plan in consultations with the FAO regional groups during the inter-sessional period;

  • stresses the need to ensure synergy and complementary, and to avoid duplication;

  • requests the FAO to seek synergies and build partnerships with relevant international organizations to facilitate the implementation of the MYPOW;

  • requests its Secretary to transmit the MYPOW to the Secretary of the ITPGR Governing Body and to invite that Secretary to inform the Governing Body in order to facilitate the planning of the work of two bodies; and

  • requests its Secretary to transmit the MYPOW to the CBD Executive Secretary, and to invite the Executive Secretary to inform the CBD COP of the MYPOW, as a tool for strengthening cooperation between FAO and the CBD.

The MYPOW timetable lists major outputs and milestones for CGRFA-12 to CGRFA-16.

On PGRFA, the schedule is as follows: presentation of the State of the World’s PGRFA at CGRFA-12; consideration of the updated GPA and review of cooperation with the ITPGR at CGRFA-13; and an update of the State of the World’s PGRFA at CGRFA-16.

On AnGR, the schedule is as follows: follow-up to the Interlaken Conference at CGRFA-12; review and implementation of the Interlaken outcomes at CGRFA-14; and an update of the State of the World’s AnGR at CGRFA-16.

On aquatic genetic resources, the schedule is as follows: a review of information for aquatic resources and key issues for the State of the World’s Aquatic Genetic Resources at CGRFA-13; presentation of the State of the World’s Aquatic Genetic Resources at CGRFA-14; and development of elements related to the code of conduct on responsible fisheries at CGRFA-15.

On forest genetic resources, the schedule is as follows: an analysis of key issues in forest genetic resources for the State of the World’s Forest Genetic Resources at CGRFA-12; and presentation of the State of the World’s Forest Genetic Resources at CGRFA-13.

On micro-organisms and invertebrates, the schedule is as follows: a review of a scoping study on micro-organisms and invertebrates at CGRFA-12; a review of key issues on micro-organisms and invertebrates at CGRFA-14; and a review of work on micro-organisms and invertebrates at CGRFA-15.

On cross-sectorial matters, the schedule is as follows:

  • consideration of policies and arrangements for access and benefit-sharing for genetic resources for food and agriculture at CGRFA-12;

  • a review of all relevant international targets and indicators for biodiversity for food and agriculture at CGRFA-14;

  • consideration of the internalization of the ecosystem approach to biodiversity management in agriculture, forests and fisheries and a review of the contribution of biodiversity for food and agriculture to the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals at CGRFA-15; and

  • the presentation of the State of the World’s Biodiversity for Food and Agriculture at CGRFA-16.

In this section, brackets remain around a review of ways and means regarding the application and integration of biotechnologies in the conservation and utilization of genetic resources as a basis for future work such as the development of guidelines, consideration of codes of conduct or other work at CGRFA-13.

On management of the MYPOW, CGRFA-13 and CGRFA-15 will address a progress report and periodic assessment, and review the MYPOW.

IMPLEMENTATION OF THE MULTI-YEAR PROGRAMME OF WORK

On Friday, the Secretariat introduced an analysis of the human and financial resources available within the FAO to support work on the various sectors of genetic resources for food and agriculture (CGRFA-11/07/22). He recommended that genetic resources for food and agriculture remain a priority area for the FAO’s work and that they be adequately reflected in the FAO Programme of Work and Budget. He also recommended that core activities of the Commission be supported through the Regular Programme, and invited FAO to mobilize extra-budgetary resources, particularly for the implementation of the MYPOW. On streamlining the operations of the Commission for the implementation of the MYPOW (CGRFA-11/07/23), he highlighted issues relating to the frequency of meetings, the structure of documents and translation.

Delegates welcomed the Commission’s efforts to streamline its operations. Argentina called for considering the Commission’s funding limitations when identifying new activities. The US noted the need for greater transparency regarding financial and personnel resources, and supported the election of the Bureau as a means of moving the work plan forward. The UK for the ERG looked forward to a future focus on a limited number of planned and scheduled activities for each session, and Brazil and Cuba expressed concern relating to the dependence on extra-budgetary resources

Final Outcome on the FAO’s Human and Financial Resources for Implementation of the MYPOW: In the report of the meeting (CGRFA-11/07/DR-PART 2), the Commission:

  • stresses that genetic resources for food and agriculture should remain a priority area for the FAO’s work;

  • recognizes the need to match priorities to available financial and human resources;

  • recommends that core activities of the Commission be supported through the Regular Programme; and

  • invites the FAO, if required, to mobilize extra-budgetary resources, in particular for the implementation of the MYPOW.

Final Outcome on Streamlining the Operations of the Commission: In the report of the meeting (CGRFA-11/07/DR-PART 2), the Commission:

  • decides to maintain the frequency and duration of its regular sessions;

  • recommends that sufficient time be allocated to regional consultations preceding sessions;

  • requests its Bureau to play an active role in preparing for the next session;

  • requests its Secretariat, in collaboration with the Bureau, to prepare draft rules of procedure for consideration at its next regular session;

  • recommends that a clear rule be put in place for the accreditation of media representatives, and for the participation of observers in sessions of the Commission;

  • requests the FAO Director-General to initiate preliminary consideration of ways in which the status of the Commission might be raised, within the constitutional framework of the FAO, in order to reflect the Commission’s role as the only intergovernmental body responsible specifically for biodiversity for food and agriculture; and

  • agrees to consider at its next session the establishment of an ITWG on Forest Genetic Resources to succeed the Panel of Experts for Forest Gene Resources.

OTHER MATTERS

The Commission addressed the agenda item on other matters on Friday. The US, supported by Australia, requested that the meeting report record that the Commission did not approve of language contained in an FAO press release on threats to farm animal diversity. Spain noted that it had become the first country to make an extra-budgetary donation to the FAO, and highlighted its contribution to a project designed to assist Latin American countries in their work on PGRFA, for which Argentina expressed the gratitude of Latin American countries. The UK updated delegates on a joint initiative between the FAO, the UK Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs and the Royal Botanical Gardens to improve the identification, handling and storage of difficult or recalcitrant seeds, primarily in Africa. Switzerland stressed the need for the Commission to better address sustainable grasslands and forest management through a production and use approach. Togo called for further assistance to African countries in the preparation of their national reports on AnGR. A civil society representative thanked the Commission and its Secretariat for allowing civil society to participate in the meeting, and emphasized issues of key importance, including agro-biodiversity, access and benefit-sharing, and farmers’ and livestock keepers’ rights.

Delegates agreed that the Commission would convene its twelfth regular session in Rome at a suitable date in the third or fourth quarter of 2009.

CLOSING PLENARY

The closing plenary convened at 8:30 pm on Friday. Chair Visser drew attention to the report of the meeting (CGRFA-11/07DR-PART 1 and 2). Delegates adopted the text paragraph by paragraph, making minor amendments. Regional groups made closing statements, expressing their appreciation to Chair Visser and the Secretariat. Clive Stannard, Commission Secretariat, thanked colleagues and participants, past and present, and noted the work that had been achieved at the session. Chair Visser closed the meeting at 12:26 am on Saturday, 16 June 2007.

A BRIEF ANALYSIS OF CGRFA-11

CGRFA-11 took place against the backdrop of preparations for the Global Plan of Action for Animal Genetic Resources (AnGR), the upcoming International Technical Conference on AnGR, and the development of the Commission’s draft multi-year programme of work (MYPOW). The Commission worked hard to achieve consensus on a number of the central elements of the Global Plan of Action and established a MYPOW that sets out an ambitious timetable of major outputs and milestones for the next five sessions. However, the consensus that was reached was achieved by postponing discussion of a number of more contentious issues, such as funding, trade incentives and climate change. This analysis examines the eleventh regular session in the context of the ongoing work of the Commission, with a focus on agenda items concerning AnGR and the MYPOW.

THE GLOBAL PLAN OF ACTION ON ANIMAL GENETIC RESOURCES

Issues associated with AnGR arguably received more attention at this meeting than at previous sessions of the Commission. Discussions focused on preparations for the International Technical Conference on AnGR, to be held in Interlaken, Switzerland, in September 2007 (Interlaken Conference), and the related draft Interlaken Declaration and Global Plan of Action for AnGR, incorporating the Strategic Priorities for Action. With the Interlaken Conference representing a major opportunity for the international community to address priorities for the conservation, development and sustainable use of animal genetic resources, CGRFA-11 invested heavily in its projected outcomes, particularly the draft Global Plan of Action for AnGR and a series of Strategic Priorities relating to the classification, conservation and sustainable use of AnGR.

Implementation and financing for the Global Plan of Action proved to be the main sticking point, and the document sent to Interlaken remains mostly bracketed. Stressing that adequate funding is essential to operationalize the Global Strategy for the Management of Farm AnGR by transforming it into a Global Plan of Action, developing countries called for international funding commitments. Some eloquently observed that, without funding, the Plan would be a mere restatement of aims. On the other hand, a number of developed countries were careful to note that the main responsibility for implementing a Global Plan of Action rests with national governments. This conflict of positions was to some degree inevitable, given that this was the first time that the Commission discussed financing in this context. Considering the attention devoted to financing issues at the 1996 Leipzig Conference, when the Global Plan of Action for Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (PGRFA) was adopted, it is anticipated that the issue will feature prominently at the Interlaken Conference.

Reminiscent of prior debates on farmers’ rights, the issue of livestock keepers’ rights emerged as another issue of contention. The African region attempted several times to articulate the concept, stressing that livestock keepers are the custodians of many unique breeds, contributing in this way to the Gross Domestic Product of developing countries, and further highlighting the potential of livestock activities for poverty alleviation, and concerns relating to potential misappropriation of AnGR. Canada and other parties resisted, stressing that the concept of livestock keepers’ rights has yet to be espoused internationally, and cautioning against creating rights and obligations in the absence of an accepted definition. In this context, a developed country delegate drew the distinction with the concept of farmers’ rights, which was encapsulated in the text of the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (ITPGR), after detailed and careful negotiation. However, this seems to be only the beginning of a lengthy debate. Given its importance to Africa and the work of several NGOs in the field, the issue will certainly resurface in Interlaken and beyond.

THE MULTI-YEAR PROGRAMME OF WORK

Given its role in determining the future work and direction of the Commission, discussion of the MYPOW was a central element of GGRFA-11. Delegates were charged with forward-planning the major outputs and milestones to be addressed over the Commission’s next five sessions. They debated the level of detail of the MYPOW and engaged with the specifics of timetabling sectorial and cross-sectorial matters. The process adopted demonstrates the determination with which the Commission is managing its affairs, and the tabulated outcome is testament to the flexible and practical manner with which delegates are progressing its work.

The “MYPOW Committee” began the work by identifying priorities and related timing for work in relation to PGRFA, AnGR and forest genetic resources. When presented to plenary, however, delegates decided that they lacked the time to agree to the level of detail produced in the document, opting instead to work on a tabulated timetable of major outputs and milestones prepared by the Secretariat. Does this mean the Committee’s work was a wasted exercise? On the contrary, it focused the regions’ lead representatives on the detail of the MYPOW and gave them an opportunity to better understand each others’ priorities. The fact that the Commission was able to reach agreement on the MYPOW, despite its inability to work from the Committee’s draft document, demonstrates a level of determination and flexibility that bodes well for its future work.

Delegates worked to agree on a timetable for major sectorial and cross-sectorial outputs and milestones for the Commission’s twelfth to sixteenth sessions. Sectorial matters included State of the World reports for plant, animal, aquatic and forest genetic resources, a review of the implementation of the Interlaken outcomes and a scoping study on micro-organisms and invertebrates. Of the cross-sectorial matters, policies and arrangements for benefit-sharing, a code of conduct for biotechnology and the internalization of the ecosystem approach received the most attention. The MYPOW process was notable in several ways. First, the task was a careful balancing exercise. Keen to engage with the issues, delegates had to remain mindful that overburdening the Commission’s work programme, especially for CGRFA-12 and 13, would be counterproductive. Second, regarding the sectorial matters, delegates showed pragmatism and willingness to accommodate the priorities of other Commission members in the way they planned items. On aquatic genetic resources, for example, delegates decided to reverse the original order of the milestones, so as to produce the State of the World’s Aquatic Genetic Resources ahead of beginning work on the development of elements related to the code of conduct on responsible fisheries. Third, on cross-sectorial matters, the Commission strove to schedule only one output per session and succeeded in mapping out a progression of matters whose consideration is vital to ensure an integrated and coherent approach to its work. The agreement to consider policies and arrangements for access and benefit-sharing for genetic resources for food and agriculture, given the complexity of the issue and the links with other processes, notably the CBD’s Ad Hoc Open-Ended Working Group on Access and Benefit-Sharing, should be considered an achievement.

MOVING FORWARD

Opening CGRFA-11, Alexander Müller called on delegates to heed the “crisis” of genetic diversity loss and to seize the “opportunity” presented by the session’s consideration of a MYPOW. The Commission did indeed seize the opportunity. CGRFA-11 covered an expansive programme and achieved its main aims, namely, agreeing to forward the elements of a Global Plan of Action for AnGR to the Interlaken Conference, albeit with some bracketed text, and agreeing to the MYPOW for organizing the Commission’s work over the next five regular sessions. The draft Global Plan of Action for AnGR has the potential to provide a new direction to the Commission’s work, and by producing an ambitious MYPOW, the Commission has demonstrated that it has the resolve and vision to carry out its mandate well into the next decade. But it managed to achieve the overarching MYPOW only by avoiding detailed discussion of each matter.

By agreeing to adopt such a progressive agenda the CGRFA will inevitably raise questions about its ability to follow through. How will it deal with inherently complex sectorial issues such as aquatic resources and cross-sectorial matters that necessitate inter-agency collaboration? Will it be compelled to add more matters to its already burgeoning MYPOW, such as climate change? At a time of an FAO financial shortfall, how will it fund its agenda? The Commission can only respond to these questions by moving forward and working out the details at future sessions and through its inter-sessional work. An early indication of its ability to turn policy aspirations into meaningful progress presents itself at the International Technical Conference on AnGR in Interlaken, Switzerland, in September 2007. All eyes turn north.

UPCOMING MEETINGS

132ND SESSION OF THE FAO COUNCIL: The 132nd session of the FAO Council will take place from 18-22 June 2007, in Rome, Italy. For more information, contact: Ali Mekouar, FAO Legal Office; tel: +39-06-570-55612; fax: +39-06-570-55137; e-mail: Mekouar@fao.org; internet: http://www.fao.org/unfao/bodies/council/cl132/Index_en.htm

UNICPOLOS-8: The eighth meeting of the UN Open-Ended Informal Consultative Process on Oceans and the Law of the Sea will be held from 25-29 June 2007, at UN headquarters in New York. The meeting will focus its discussions on marine genetic resources. For more information, contact: the UN Division for Ocean Affairs and the Law of the Sea; tel: +1-212-963-3962; fax: +1-212-963-2811; e-mail: doalos@un.org; internet: http://www.un.org/depts/los/consultative_process/consultative_process.htm

SBSTTA-12: The Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice of the Convention on Biological Diversity will hold its twelfth session in Paris, France, from 2-6 July 2007. For more information, contact: CBD Secretariat; tel: +1-514-288-2220; fax: +1-514-288-6588; e-mail: secretariat@cbd.int; internet: http://www.cbd.int/doc/meeting.aspx?mtg=sbstta-12

11TH SESSION OF WIPO INTERGOVERNMENTAL COMMITTEE ON INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY AND GENETIC RESOURCES, TRADITIONAL KNOWLEDGE AND FOLKLORE: This meeting, which is being organized by the World Intellectual Property Organization, will take place from 3-12 July 2007, in Geneva, Switzerland. For more information, contact: IGC Secretariat; tel: +41-22-338-8161; fax: +41-22-338-8120; e-mail: grtkf@wipo.int; internet: http://www.wipo.int/meetings/en/details.jsp?meeting_id=12522

SECOND MEETING OF THE CBD WORKING GROUP ON REVIEW OF IMPLEMENTATION: The second meeting of the CBD Open-Ended Working Group on Review of Implementation of the Convention will take place from 9-13 July 2007, in Paris, France. For more information, contact: CBD Secretariat; tel: +1-514-288-2220; fax: +1-514-288-6588; e-mail: secretariat@cbd.int; internet: http://www.cbd.int/doc/meeting.aspx?mtg=WGRI-02

FIRST INTERNATIONAL TECHNICAL CONFERENCE ON ANIMAL GENETIC RESOURCES: This conference will take place from 1-7 September 2007, in Interlaken, Switzerland. It will aim to address priorities for the sustainable use, development and conservation of animal genetic resources. For more information, contact: the Conference Secretariat; tel: +39-06-570-54698; fax: +39-06-570-53927; e-mail: Interlaken-AnGR@fao.org; internet: http://www.fao.org/ag/againfo/programmes/en/genetics/angrvent2007.html

ABS-5: The fifth meeting of the CBD Ad Hoc Open-Ended Working Group on Access and Benefit-Sharing will take place from 8-12 October 2007, in Montreal, Canada. For more information, contact: CBD Secretariat; tel: +1-514-288-2220; fax: +1-514-288-6588; e-mail: secretariat@cbd.int; internet: http://www.cbd.int/doc/meeting.aspx?mtg=ABSWG-05

FIFTH MEETING OF THE WORKING GROUP ON ARTICLE 8(J): The fifth meeting of the CBD Ad Hoc Open-Ended Working Group on Article 8(j) and Related Provisions will take place from 15-19 October 2007, in Montreal, Canada. For more information, contact: CBD Secretariat; tel: +1-514-288-2220; fax: +1-514-288-6588; e-mail: secretariat@cbd.int; internet: http://www.cbd.int/doc/meeting.aspx?mtg=WG8J-05

FOURTH MEETING OF THE WORKING GROUP ON LIABILITY AND REDRESS IN THE CONTEXT OF THE CARTAGENA PROTOCOL ON BIOSAFETY: This meeting will take place from 22-26 October 2007, in Montreal, Canada. For more information, contact: CBD Secretariat; tel: +1-514-288-2220; fax: +1-514-288-6588; e-mail: secretariat@cbd.int; internet: http://www.cbd.int/meetings/default.shtml

SECOND SESSION OF THE ITPGR GOVERNING BODY: Organized by the FAO, the second session of the Governing Body of the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture will be held from 28 October - 2 November 2007, in Rome, Italy. For more information, contact: Shakeel Bhatti, ITPGR Secretary; tel: +39-06-570-53441; fax: + +39-06-570-53057; e-mail: shakeel.bhatti@fao.org; internet: http://www.planttreaty.org

FIFTH TRONDHEIM CONFERENCE ON BIODIVERSITY: The fifth Trondheim Conference on Biodiversity will be held from 29 October - 2 November 2007, in Trondheim, Norway, under the theme �Ecosystems and people - biodiversity for development � the road to 2010 and beyond.� For more information, contact: Norway�s Directorate for Nature Management; tel: +47-73-58-05-00, fax: +47-73-58-05-01; e-mail: trondheim.conference@dirnat.no; internet: http://www.trondheimconference.org/

CGRFA-12: The Commission on Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture will convene its twelfth regular session in Rome in the third or fourth quarter of 2009 (exact dates to be confirmed). For more information, contact Clive Stannard, Senior Liaison Officer, CGRFA Secretariat, tel +39-06-570-55480; fax: +39-06-570-53057; e-mail: cgrfa@fao.org; internet: http://www.fao.org/ag/cgrfa/default.htm

GLOSSARY

AnGR
CBD
CGIAR
CGRFA

ERG
FAO
GPA
IPRs
ITPGR
ITWG-AnGR
ITWG-PGR
IU
Interlaken Conference
MTA
MYPOW
PGRFA
Strategic Priorities

WIPO
Animal genetic resources
Convention on Biological Diversity
Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research
Commission on Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture
European regional group
Food and Agriculture Organization
Global Plan of Action for the Conservation and Sustainable Utilization of Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture
Intellectual Property Rights
International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture
Intergovernmental Technical Working Group on Animal Genetic Resources
Intergovernmental Technical Working Group on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture
International Undertaking
International Technical Conference on Animal Genetic Resources

Material Transfer Agreement
Multi-year programme of work
Plant genetic resources for food and agriculture
Draft Strategic Priorities for Action for the Sustainable Use, Development and Conservation of Animal Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture

World Intellectual Property Organization

This issue of the Earth Negotiations Bulletin � <enb@iisd.org> is written and edited by Asheline Appleton, Ingrid Barnsley and Harry Jonas. The Editors are Elsa Tsioumani and Pamela S. Chasek, Ph.D. <pam@iisd.org>. The Director of IISD Reporting Services is Langston James �Kimo� Goree VI <kimo@iisd.org>. The Sustaining Donors of the Bulletin are the United Kingdom (through the Department for International Development � DFID), the Government of the United States of America (through the Department of State Bureau of Oceans and International Environmental and Scientific Affairs), the Government of Canada (through CIDA), the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Government of Germany (through the German Federal Ministry of Environment - BMU, and the German Federal Ministry of Development Cooperation - BMZ), the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the European Commission (DG-ENV) and the Italian Ministry for the Environment, Land and Sea. General Support for the Bulletin during 2007 is provided by the Swiss Federal Office for the Environment (FOEN), the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Environment, the Government of Australia, the Austrian Federal Ministry for the Environment, the Ministry of Environment of Sweden, the New Zealand Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, SWAN International, the Japanese Ministry of Environment (through the Institute for Global Environmental Strategies - IGES) and the Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (through the Global Industrial and Social Progress Research Institute - GISPRI). Specific funding for coverage of the CGRFA has been provided by the Food and Agriculture Organization. The opinions expressed in the Earth Negotiations Bulletin are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of IISD or other donors. Excerpts from the Earth Negotiations Bulletin may be used in non-commercial publications with appropriate academic citation. For information on the Bulletin, including requests to provide reporting services, contact the Director of IISD Reporting Services at <kimo@iisd.org>, +1-646-536-7556 or 212 East 47th St. #21F, New York, NY 10017, USA.