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Third Intersessional Meeting of the Contact Group of the Commission on Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture

Tehran, Iran 
26-31 August 2000




Third Intersessional Meeting of the Contact Group of the Commission on Genetic Resources for Food &  Agriculture


Briefing note for Sunday, 27 August 2000

The Contact Group met in morning and afternoon sessions to continue discussions on Article 14.2(d) (Commercial Benefit-sharing), specifically focusing on elements addressing private sector involvement in partnerships for research and technological development, and payment of a percentage of royalties derived from plant genetic resources accessed under the Multilateral System (PGRFA). On the first element, debate generally centered around whether Parties should be obliged to share commercial benefits through measures involving the private sector or whether such measures should be promoted. After extended discussion, delegates accepted language on Parties agreeing �to take measures to achieve commercial benefit-sharing through the involvement of the private and public sectors��


Regarding the element addressing royalties, contentious discussion revolved around whether the provision should apply to products derived from PGRFA protected by: patents (which restrict further access); any form of intellectual property protection (including Plant Breeders� Rights which do not restrict further access) and/or forms of commercial protection that just restrict access to genetic material. An observer organization presented a proposal for the provision, which had been introduced at a previous session. Subsequent discussion did not yield significant progress. Chair Fernando Gerbasi (Venezuela) then convened a small working group to draft compromise text, which started its discussions in a late evening session.





This briefing note was provided by the International Institute for Sustainable Development, publishers of the Earth Negotiations Bulletinenb@iisd.org. It was written and edited by Stas Burgiel <stas@iisd.org> and Tonya Barnes <tonya@iisd.org>. Website design/editing for this meeting by Chris Spence <chris@iisd.org>.The Editor is Pamela Chasek, Ph.D. <pam@iisd.org> and the Managing Editor is Langston James "Kimo" Goree <kimo@iisd.org>. IISD can be contacted by e-mail at <info@iisd.ca> and at 161 Portage Avenue East, 6th Floor, Winnipeg, Manitoba R3B 0Y4, Canada. The opinions expressed in this briefing note are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of IISD and other funders. Excerpts from this briefing note may be used in non-commercial publications only and only with appropriate academic citation. For permission to use this material in commercial publications, contact the Managing Editor.    

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