“In collaboration with the secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity, the IUCN has achieved one of the outcomes of the project Advancing the Nagoya Protocol in Countries of the Caribbean Region” said Melesha Banhan, technical coordinator of the project, after the Access and Benefit-sharing Clearing House (ABSCH) workshop, held on Thursday 21st and Friday 22nd July in Jamaica.
Representatives of government institutions from Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Guyana, Jamaica, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia and Trinidad and Tobago participated in the workshop, as part of the activities held by the project.
The ABS Clearing House Mechanism (CHM) was recently established in 2014 under the Nagoya Protocol, as part of the reporting mechanism of the Convention. The CHM is a means for sharing information related to access and benefit-sharing, and in particular its goal is to provide access to reliable information made available by each Party relevant to the implementation of the Protocol.
“This workshop on the clearing house mechanism (CHM) of the Nagoya Protocol was convened in fulfilling one of the project requirements to provide an enabling environment for the implementation of the Nagoya Protocol in countries. This is an important achievement as country representatives have now been provided with the technical assistance needed to use the CHM as an information exchange and monitoring mechanism for ABS in their counties and the region”, according to Melesha Banhan, technical coordinator of the Project Advancing the Nagoya Protocol in Countries of the Caribbean Region.
The project Advancing the Nagoya Protocol in Countries of the Caribbean Region seeks the uptake of the Nagoya Protocol and support countries to facilitate access to their genetic resources and benefit sharing in a fair and equitable way, in line with the Convention on Biological Diversity and the Nagoya Protocol.
“This initiative is very important for the region not only from the perspective of conserving biodiversity and natural resources, but also to promote sustainable development as well as respect local culture and traditional knowledge”, said María Pía Hernández, coordinator, Biodiversity and rights unit, IUCN Regional Office for México, Central America and the Caribbean.
Mathew Dias, Programme officer from the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity, was the facilitator of the workshop and he expertly explained how the ABSCH works and how the countries can enter as well as update national information.
The project is of a regional nature, funded by GEF with UNEP as its Implementing Agency, IUCN as its Executing Agency. Project received co-finance from Caribbean governments, regional institutions (OECS), CBD Secretariat and GIZ-ABS initiative.