The Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) and its Nagoya Protocol confirm that states have sovereign rights over the genetic resources found within their national jurisdiction. Therefore, each country is entitled to define the modality of access to such resources, be it for research (or purely commercial) purposes and for their subsequent utilization. In addition, benefits that arise from conducting research and development on genetic resources (and associated traditional knowledge) are to be shared fairly and equitably with the Party (“country”) providing the resources.
These principles are substantiated in the Nagoya Protocol (NP) and implemented in the domestic legislation and regulations of the countries providing the genetic resources. It is up to the countries to decide whether they require the fulfilment of ABS obligations for access to their genetic resources.
If you intend to do research on genetic resources and/or associated traditional knowledge in a country requiring ABS procedures for academic research, your research needs to be covered by the Prior Informed Consent (PIC) and the Mutually Agreed Terms (MAT) of the provider country. If your research includes associated traditional knowledge, the PIC and possibly MAT of its holders may be required too. The respective conditions depend on the domestic legislation or regulatory requirements of the provider country.
Stakeholders involved in Access to Genetic Resources and Associated Traditional Knowledge and steps to take
This table gives a simplified overview of the persons and the steps involved in access to genetic resources and associated traditional knowledge and introduces the pertinent terminology