The ABS Capacity Development Initiative is hosted by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and implemented by the Secretariat of the ABS Initiative. The Secretariat has been commissioned to the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH and is based at GIZ headquarters in Eschborn, Germany.
From the beginning of the ABS Capacity Development Initiative it was agreed that donors, African representatives and other important players ― such as the Secretariat for the Convention on Biological Diversity (SCBD) ― should be involved in decision making.
With more donors and partners joining the Initiative and the broadening of the regional scope to the Caribbean and the Pacific regions, the governance structure developed into what it is today:
- Regional Steering Committees ― established for Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific
- Joint Steering Committee
- General Assembly
The Steering Committees and the General Assembly
The regional steering committees provide general guidance and advice to the Secretariat of the ABS Initiative on the capacity development process and implementation in the respective regions. They constitute the main decision making body of the ABS Initiative.
Regional steering committee members include donor representatives and appointed stakeholder representatives, excluding members of the Secretariat. Stakeholder representatives are appointed in their personal capacities based on their function, experience and ability to represent stakeholder interests.
The Regional Steering Committees meet at least once a year.
Please click on the following items for the lists of members of the different committees and the General Assembly and a description of their tasks.
African Steering Committee
Mr Jon Heikki Aas –Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Norway
Mrs Christine Akello – National Environment Management Authority, Uganda
Mr Issa Bado (cc Mr Jean-Pierre Ndoutoum) – Institut de la Francophonie pour le développement durable (IFDD)
Prof Ahmed Birouk – Institut Agronomique et Vétérinaire Hassan II, Morocco
Mrs Aurélie Dingom – ABS National Focal Point, Cameroon
Mrs Natalie Feltmann – ABS National Focal Point, South Africa
Mrs Ulrike Haupt (cc Mr Matthias Krause) – Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), Germany
Mr Philipp Ischer – Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Cooperation (SECO)
Mrs Veronique Koffi– ABS National Focal Point, Côte d’Ivoire
Mr Philippe Mayaux (cc Mrs Florence van Houtte) – DG Dev, EU Commission
Mrs Lesle Jansen (cc Mr Jazzy Rasolojaona) – Natural Justice
Mrs Lucy Mulenkei – Indigenous Information Network, Nairobi
Mrs Shamiso Mungwashu – Fairtrade Support Network Zimbabwe Trust (FSZN)
Mr Chouaibou Nchoutpouen – Secretariat of the COMIFAC
Mr Pierre du Plessis
Mrs Kauna Schroeder – ABS National Focal Point, Namibia
Mrs Mahlet Teshome – Department for Human Resources, Science and Technology, AU Commission
Mr Kent Nnadozi – Secretariat of the International Treaty for Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (ITPGRFA)
Mr Olusola Ojo (cc Mr Edmund Jackson) – ACP Secretariat
Mrs Maria Julia Oliva – Union for Ethical BioTrade (UEBT)
Mr Olivier Rukundo
Mrs Kristina Taboulchanas – Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (SCBD)
Mr Morten Walløe Tvedt
Pacific Steering Committee
A Joint Regional Steering Committee (JRSC) for the Pacific was created for facilitating coordination and synergies between the GEF/UNEP Pacific Regional ABS project executed by the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) and the ABS Initiative’s work in the region.
Once the steering committee for the Caribbean region has been constituted you will find the list of members here. Until 2015, the members were:
Mr Dimitri Harmegnies – DG Dev, EU Commission
Ms Ulrike Haupt (cc Mr Mathias Krause) – Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), Germany
Ms Elizabeth Munro (cc Joseph Brider) – ABS National Focal Point, Cook Islands
Mr Arona Soumare (cc Mr Jean-Pierre Ndoutoum) – Institut de la Francophonie pour le développement durable (IFDD)
Ms Alissa Takesy – ABS National Focal Point, Micronesia (Federated States of)
Mr Trinison Tari (cc Ms Donna Kalfatak) – ABS National Focal Point, Vanuatu
Maria-Goreti Muaves (cc Alan Saunders) – IUCN Oceania
Ms Valerie Normand – Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (SCBD)
Mr Clark Peteru – Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP
Mr Daniel Robinson – University of New South Wales, Australia
Ms Valerie Tuja (cc Mr Cenon Padolina) – Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC)
Caribbean Steering Committee
Once the steering committee for the Caribbean region has been constituted you will find the list of members here. Until 2015 the members were:
Cuba (spanish speaking member)
Grenada (OECS member)
Jamaica (non-OECS member)
St. Lucia (OECS member)
Suriname (continental member)
Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Secretariat
Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), Germany
European Union, Directorates General (DG) Development
Secretariat of the ABS Initiative
TRAMIL - Program of Applied Research to Popular Medicine in the Caribbean
University of the West Indies
Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (SCBD)
Joint Steering Committee
The Joint Steering Committee provides general guidance and advice on regionally overarching matters to the Regional Steering Committees and the Secretariat of the ABS Initiative.
The Joint Steering Committee comprises of all members of the regional steering committees.
If the Secretariat requires guidance or decisions, an email consultation process is initiated by the Secretariat.
A physical meeting of the Joint Steering Committee will only be called if a decision by consensus cannot be reached by email exchange (silence procedure) or telephone/video conference.
General Assembly participants are members and observers of the three regional steering committees as well as invited and interested representatives from partners and stakeholders.
The General Assembly offers a forum for a broader exchange on ABS capacity development. It fosters South-South dialogue and interchange with regions where the ABS Initiative is not active. The General Assembly operates in a purely consultative mode by informing the discussions and decision making of the regional steering committees and Secretariat.
The General Assembly meets bi-annually, ideally back-to-back with the meetings for the Conferences of the Parties to the CBD.