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ABS and Intellectual Property Rights for National ABS Focal Points

12-16 August 2013, Nadi, Fiji

ABS frameworks are intimately connected to other regulatory frameworks, such as the system for the protection of intellectual property rights (IPRs). This training familiarized National Focal Points with ABS and the opportunities and challenges they may face, given the adoption of the Nagoya Protocol.


This training aimed to provide a more in depth understanding of the linkages between IPRs and ABS. This included:

  • Brief participants on the links between ABS and IPRs and their significance for NFPs
  • Explain how the IPRs system is linked to ABS, both substantively and institutionally
  • Provide a basic understanding of relevant IPRs such as patents and geographical indications
  • Explain alternative traditional knowledge protection models (also referred to as sui generis systems)
  • Provide a platform for dialogue where NFPs can discuss and share concrete practical experience on the interface between IPRs and ABS and discuss possible regional approaches to cope more effectively with these issues.


There is a need to develop ABS policy and regulations. Participants asked for technical assistance to develop their national ABS laws.

Policies and laws are more likely to evolve on the national level as the Pacific region has a complex and diverse structure.

National activities would enable countries to develop national approaches to ABS. This was preferred over regional regulatory and policy approaches. However, the importance of sharing experiences and exchanging ideas on a regional level was highlighted.

Up to 25 participants attended, mainly ABS National Focal Points and representatives of national and regional authorities responsible for the protection of IPRs of selected English speaking countries.

This training was hosted by the Secretariat of the Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) and organised by the ABS Capacity Development Initiative.