ITPGR Germplasm Transfers Exceed Four Million, Countries Ratify CBD Protocols
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The Central African Republic became the 38th country to ratify the Nagoya-Kuala Lumpur Supplementary Protocol on Liability and Redress to the CBD’s Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety, moving closer to the target of 40 Parties required for the Supplementary Protocol to enter into force.

Kuwait became the 100th Party to the Nagoya Protocol on Access and Benefit-sharing.

The ITPGR Secretariat announced that more than four million samples of germplasm have been transferred under its Multilateral System for Access and Benefit-sharing.

July 2017: Implementation of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) and the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (ITPGR) impact progress towards the achievement of globally agreed goals and targets on biodiversity, under these regimes as well as the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). For instance, SDG target 15.6 calls for the promotion of “fair and equitable sharing of the benefits arising from the utilization of genetic resources” and the promotion of “appropriate access to such resources,” while the CBD Aichi Targets call for safeguarding genetic diversity for food and agriculture, and implementation of the Nagoya Protocol.

Supplementary Protocol on Liability and Redress to the Cartagena Protocol Nears Entry into Force

On 15 June 2017, the Central African Republic (CAR) ratified the Supplementary Protocol on Liability and Redress to the CBD’s Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety. The Cartagena Protocol seeks to ensure the safe handling, transport and use of living modified organisms (LMOs) resulting from modern biotechnology. Aspects of liability for accidents happening during transboundary movements of LMOs are addressed by the Nagoya-Kuala Lumpur Supplementary Protocol on Liability and Redress, adopted in 2010. While the Cartagena Protocol has been in force since 2003, the Supplementary Protocol has not yet received the 40 ratifications required for its entry into force. The Central African Republic became the 38th country to ratify. [CBD Press Release] [List of Signatures and Ratifications to the Supplementary Protocol]

In related news, the CBD Secretariat has released the report of the latest meeting of the Cartagena Protocol’s Compliance Committee. Among other issues, participants considered outcomes relevant for compliance of the eighth Meeting of the Parties to the Protocol (COP-MOP 8), including: the Biosafety Clearing-house (BCH); financial mechanism and resources; monitoring and reporting; transit and contained use of LMOs; and compliance. The Committee also reviewed its future workplan, and addressed general issues of compliance. The 14th meeting of the Compliance Committee under the Cartagena Protocol was held the 16-18 May 2017 in Montreal, Canada. [Report of the 14th Meeting of the Compliance Committee under the Cartagena Protocol]

Kuwait Becomes 100th Party to Ratify Nagoya Protocol on ABS

The CBD’s Nagoya Protocol on Access to Genetic Resources and the Fair and Equitable Sharing of Benefits Arising from their Utilization (ABS) provides the legal framework for the effective implementation of ABS under the CBD. Adopted in 2010, it entered into force in October 2014. On 5 June 2017, Kuwait became the 100th Party to ratify the Nagoya Protocol. [CBD Press Release] [Nagoya Protocol List of Parties]

More than Four Million Samples of Germplasm Transferred Under the ITPGR

One of the objectives of the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (ITPGR) is to implement ABS regarding Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (PGRFA) through its Multilateral System (MLS). Under the MLS, countries provide access to each other’s resources using a Standard Materials Transfer Agreement (SMTA). In June 2017, the ITPGR Secretariat announced that more than four million samples of PGRFA germplasm have been transferred under the MLS, making it the largest pool of germplasm in the world.

The Secretariat’s press release provides details about the types of germplasm transferred as well as the origins and destinations of the transfers executed to date. More detailed information can be found in the Secretariat’s reports on MLS Implementation to the ITPGR Governing Body. An updated report will be made available prior to the Governing Body’s seventh session to be held fro 30 October – 3 November 2017 in Kigali, Rwanda. [ITPGR Press Release] [ITPGR Governing Body Meetings] [Report on the Implementation of the Multilateral System to the sixth session of the Governing Body (October 2015)]


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