National experts trained on Legal Framework for Access and Benefit Sharing (ABS)

10 June 2010 | News story

From 2 to 9 June, 2010 IUCN held the third round of training courses under the InWEnt programme “Regional Environmental Policy in the South Caucasus” in Georgia and Armenia.

The 3-day training courses on “Legal Framework for Access and Benefit Sharing (ABS)” were carried out for staff members from of the Environment Ministries as well as other Ministries and NGOs. The training looked into the protection of genetic resources and their use with an emphasis on Armenia, Azerbaijan and Georgia.

During the training participants learned about the current state of the negotiations of an international ABS regime under the Convention on Biological Diversity; the Bonn Guidelines, a nonbinding document designed to help Parties implement national ABS regimes and how existing provisions in user countries’ national law can be used to build a functioning ABS regime at national level. Participants also became acquainted with a variety of tools – the advantages and disadvantages of requiring “Prior Informed Consent” (PIC) or establishing a “free access” system subject to domestic property law; advantages and disadvantages of different forms of ownership of genetic resources; etc. A variety of case studies from Europe and a role play actively involved participants.

The trainers were Mr. Thomas Greiber, Legal Officer at the IUCN Environmental Law Centre in Bonn, Germany and the IUCN focal point for ABS and Dr. Evanson C. Kamau, Senior Research Fellow at the Faculty of Law at the Research Centre for European Environmental Law in Bremen, Germany.

A 3-day training in Baku, Azerbaijan from 30 June to 02 July, 2010 will complete this round of training. The final activity within this series of trainings will be an international seminar in September 2010 in Germany.

The series of training courses is conducted by the IUCN Environmental Law Centre and the Programme Office for the Southern Caucasus, in collaboration with Adelphi Research. Its objective is to contribute to the further development of the region's nature conservation policies and legislation in order to support approximation to the EU Aquis Communautaire. The training series is implemented on behalf of InWEnt Capacity Building International, Germany.