Overview of national and regional measures on access to genetic resources and benefit-sharing: challenges and opportunities in implementing the Nagoya Protocol

In light of the adoption of the Nagoya Protocol, it is important for countries that have or are in the process of putting in place national ABS measures to share their experiences in implementation. Drawing upon practical experience with ABS will greatly assist in highlighting where regulatory gaps exist, what the strengths and weaknesses of different approaches to ABS are, and where international rules will be of assistance. This study reviews the ABS measures in countries from Latin America and the Caribbean, Asia, the South Pacific, Africa, Europe and North America as well as the regional measures of the Andean Community, ASEAN, the African Union plus discussions in the European Union and the Nordic countries. It examines the relevant laws and policies and their provisions on scope, prior informed consent, mutually agreed terms on benefit-sharing, compliance, and monitoring and enforcement as well as any access agreements that have been granted or relevant experience gained in the implementation of the ABS measures. It also presents a discussion and conclusions on the main legislative challenges to implementing the Nagoya Protocol on ABS.