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Thursday, September 28, 2023

Senegal ratifies Nagoya Protocol, SA issues compliance certificate

Senegal has ratified the Nagoya Protocol on Access to Genetic Resources and the Fair and Equitable Sharing of Benefits Arising from their Utilisation, making it the 32nd African nation to do so, and the 73rd country in the world.

President Macky Sall of Senegal
President Macky Sall of Senegal

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 was adopted at the 10th meeting
of the Conference of the Parties (COP10) in 2010, in Nagoya, Japan, and entered into force on 12 October 2014.

The Government of Senegal deposited its instrument of ratification with the Secretary-General of the United Nations on 3 March 2016.

Though she signed it in February 2012, Nigeria is yet to ratify the Protocol.

Besides Senegal, African nations that have ratified the Protocol include: Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cote d’Ivoire, Congo, DR Congo, Djibouti, Egypt, Ethiopia, Gabon, The Gambia, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia and Madagascar.

Others are: Malawi, Mauritiius, Mauritania, Mozambique, Namabia, Niger, Rwanda, Seychelles, South Africa, Sudan, Togo and Uganda.

Ratification by September 2016 will enable countries to participate in decision-making at the second meeting of the Parties to the Nagoya Protocol to be held in December 2016, and to further advance the treaty’s global implementation.

Similarly, South Africa issued the second internationally recognised certificate of compliance on 23 March 2016, following a permit made available to the Access and Benefit-sharing (ABS) Clearing-House.

“With the ratification by Senegal, 32 African countries have now ratified the Nagoya Protocol, sending a strong and clear signal of the region’s commitment to the implementation of the Protocol,” said Braulio Ferreira de Souza Dias, Executive Secretary of the Convention on Biological Diversity. “The issuance of the second certificate by South Africa is also an excellent advance towards making the Nagoya Protocol operational. I congratulate the Government of South Africa, and look forward to seeing others follow this example.”

Following the issuance of a permit by South Africa, the second internationally recognised certificate of compliance (IRCC) was constituted through the ABS Clearing-House. The permit was made available by South Africa’s Department of Environmental Affairs, the competent national authority under the Nagoya Protocol, and grants access to Sceletium tortuosum (Kanna plant) and associated traditional knowledge for commercial use.

Under the Nagoya Protocol, issuance at the time of access of a permit or its equivalent serve as evidence that access to genetic resources was based on prior informed consent and that mutually agreed terms were established. Parties are required by the Nagoya Protocol to make information on issuance of permits, or their equivalent, available to the ABS Clearing-House. Once the information on the permit is published by the country in the ABS Clearing-House, it automatically becomes the IRCC. The first IRCC was constituted in October 2015 following a permit made available by the Government of India.

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