National Seminar on implementation of the ABS regime in Bhutan held

ParticipantsThimphu: The National Biodiversity Centre (NBC) along with the NPIF project implementing partners, Menjong Sorig Pharmaceutical Corporation Limited (MSPCL) and Bio Bhutan organised a seminar on “Sharing of experiences on the implementation of the Access and Benefit Sharing (ABS) regime in Bhutan” on June 8.

The seminar was focused on the Nagoya Protocol on Access to Genetic Resources and the Fair and Equitable Sharing of Benefits Arising from their Utilisation to the Convention on Biological Diversity which is an international agreement which aims at sharing the benefits arising from the utilisation of genetic resources in a fair and equitable way.

Bhutan ratified the Nagoya protocol in 2012 and initiated the operationalisation of the ABS regime in the country. Subsequently, the ABS Policy of Bhutan was endorsed as the National Policy and the institutional mechanism for implementing ABS in the country was established. In 2014, NBC in partnership with UNDP CO secured an ABS project from Nagoya Protocol Implementation Fund.

As a part of the project, the Centre piloted ABS projects in collaboration with MSPCL, Bio Bhutan and local communities of Loggchina gewog in Chukkha, Langthel in Trongsa and Dagala gewog in Thimphu. During the course of its implementation over the last four years, many experiences and knowledge were generated by the implementing partners which was being disseminated to the relevant stakeholders through this seminar

The seminar constituted of series of presentations and talks on the convention on Biological Diversity and ABS from NBC followed by experiences sharing by Bio Bhutan, Dagala Community representatives MSPCL and NBC including discussions and question and answer session. It also provided a platform for the participants to foster partnership and build network amongst the stakeholders (local communities, private sectors, researchers and the ABS authorities) involved in access and utilisation of the biological resources and its associated traditional knowledge.

The seminar was attended by 27 officials, representatives from UNDP, Department of Agriculture, Department of Livestock, Agriculture Research Development Centre, BCCI, private entrepreneurs (Dragon herbs, Mountain Mist Soaps, Bhutan Cordyceps, Bhutan Organics, Norbu Healing) and Thimphu Tech-Park along with implementing agencies (NBC, Bio Bhutan and MSPCL).

The seminar was funded by UNDP-GEF through the NPIF Project.



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