|Overview : |
South Africa is a Party to the Nagoya Protocol since its entry into force on October 12, 2014. South Africa has a well-developed and progressive policy framework for biodiversity management. The country is one of the few countries to put in place national legislation that gives effect to Articles 15 and 8(j) of the CBD, which recognize the importance of regulated access to genetic resources as well as their associated TK by requiring the users of these resources to obtain PIC and negotiate mutually agreed terms to share the benefits derived from commercial or non-commercial exploitation of such resources in a fair and equitable manner with the provider of such resources and knowledge, including ILCs. The framework legislation to regulate ABS issues is the National Environmental Management: Biodiversity Act, 2004 (Act No. 10 of 2004). This legislation was built on the basis of the White Paper on Environmental Management Policy of 1998, the National Environmental Management Act, 1998 (Act No. 108 of 1998), the CBD, and the Bonn Guidelines on ABS.
The objectives of the Biodiversity Act are to provide for: a) the management and conservation of biological diversity within the country; b) the use of indigenous biological resources in a sustainable manner; c) the fair and equitable sharing among stakeholders of benefits arising from bioprospecting involving indigenous biological resources; and d) to give effect to ratified international agreements relating to biodiversity which are binding on the Republic. ABS aspects of the Biodiversity Act are being implemented through the Bioprospecting, Access, and Benefit-Sharing (BABS) Amendment Regulations. These regulations provide for: a) the notification process for the discovery phase of bioprospecting involving any indigenous genetic and biological resources; b) a permitting system for bioprospecting and biotrade activities involving any indigenous genetic and biological resources or export from the Republic of any indigenous genetic and biological resources for the purposes of bioprospecting, biotrade or any other kind of research; c) form and content of and requirements and criteria for benefit-sharing and material transfer agreements; and d) establishing the administrative process of the Bioprospecting Trust Fund. South Africa published its NBSAP in 2005 and a revised and updated NBSAP is aligned with the Aichi Biodiversity Targets. Along with the National Biodiversity Assessment (2011), these documents serve as the basis for the National Biodiversity Framework (NBF), which is updated every five years, as required by the Biodiversity Act. The Department of Environmental Affairs is the designated institution where the Nagoya Protocol on ABS focal point is hosted.
In this regard, services of a National consultant are required to primarily conduct and develop a report on a Situational Analysis on South African enterprises within the Bioprospecting/ Biotrade Sector, implementing Access and Benefit- Sharing (ABS), in order to understand how the sector applies ABS in their business models.