unctad.org | Intellectual Property and Biodiversity
Intellectual Property and Biodiversity
 
The interface between biodiversity and intellectual property is shaped at the international level by several treaties and process, including at the WIPO, and the TRIPS council of the WTO.
 
The Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) reaffirms the sovereign right of States over genetic resources (GRs) and seeks the conservation of biological diversity, the sustainable use of its components and the fair and equitable sharing of the benefits arising out of their utilization. The Convention also requires the respect, preservation and maintenance of associated traditional knowledge (TK) at the national level.
 
The implementation of the CBD and the TRIPS agreement triggered several processes in WTO and WIPO to find synergies between the two systems. These processes have not yet delivered effective solutions. The Nagoya Protocol adopted in October 2010 seeks to implement through a series of innovative measures the objective of the CBD with respect to the fair and equitable sharing of benefits derived form the utilization of GRs.
 
There remains an important policy gap for improving the IP system at the national and international levels to introduce measures designed to better respond to the concerns mentioned above and to make use of existing or adapted IP and other tools to ensure the fulfillment of CBD and Nagoya Protocol objectives.
 
In the particular case of TK, additional objectives of indigenous communities have also been raised in relation to the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.
 
Objectives
 
In accordance with paragraph 105 of the Accra Accord, ensure the protection of genetic resources (GRs) and traditional knowledge (TK) as well as benefit sharing arising from their use in line with objectives of the CBD and the Nagoya Protocol by building capacities and proving training to relevant stakeholders in the design of an enabling IP and trade regulatory environment and promoting the adaptation and effective use of relevant IP and other trade relevant instruments.
 
Activities
 
  • Develop an e-learning course on biodiversity protection in the intellectual property and trade systems, comparable to UNCTAD/InWEnt´s public health e-learning course1
  • The e-learning course will be composed of a training manual and method linked to an electronic interface;
  • A set of national experiences on successful integration of pro-biodiversity measures in the IP and trade systems as well as on their effective use (good examples of disclosure mechanisms, databases, GIs based on biodiversity or TK relevant products and certificates).   
  • A literature review of more relevant pieces during the last five years.
  • A peer review of the training manual and the national experiences. 
  • Six training sessions: South America, Central America (in cooperation with SIECA), Southern Africa, Western-/Central Africa, East Africa, South-/South-East Asia. A Geneva course could be added for delegates and negotiators

 

 



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