The third session of the Subsidiary Body on Implementation (SBI-3) of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) concluded virtual deliberations and suspended the meeting. When the COVID-19 pandemic allows, the session is expected to resume in-person to finalize negotiations and forward recommendations to the 15th session of the Conference of the Parties (COP-15), scheduled to take place later this year in Kunming, China.
During the three-hour session, delegates addressed conference room papers (CRPs) on the financial mechanism, and on specialized international access and benefit-sharing (ABS) instruments. They heard an update from the Secretariat on administrative and budgetary matters, and reports from contact groups and Friends of the Chair groups on:
- resource mobilization, noting a non-paper developed by the contact group Co-Chairs has not been negotiated and does not represent consensus, but contains parties’ comments on important components to be included in the post-2020 global biodiversity framework (GBF) and will be transmitted to the Co-Chairs of the Open-ended Working Group on the GBF;
- the draft implementation plan and capacity-building action plan for the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety, noting the CRP will be addressed at the resumed session;
- biodiversity mainstreaming, noting a CRP containing few unresolved matters will be addressed at the resumed session, while advice of relevance to the GBF will be forwarded to the Co-Chairs of the Open-ended Working Group; and
- a global multilateral benefit-sharing mechanism, noting the CRP will be addressed at the resumed session. Plenary also heard suggestions that the recommendation should be presented to COP-15, in addition to the Meeting of the Parties to the Nagoya Protocol. The African Group also said the item should be considered by the Open-ended Working Group on the GBF in relation to digital sequence information.
Delegates considered a CRP, including a draft recommendation and terms of reference for the sixth review of the effectiveness of the financial mechanism. Plenary approved the CRP, retaining brackets around all operative paragraphs of the draft recommendation as well as around sections on objectives and criteria of the draft terms of reference.
Specialized International ABS Agreements
Plenary debated a CRP, including a draft recommendation and indicative criteria for specialized international ABS instruments under Article 4.4 of the Nagoya Protocol on ABS.
Delegates debated, without reaching agreement, paragraphs in the recommendation addressing:
- whether to include references to paragraph 4 of Article 4 or to the entire Article;
- an invitation to relevant international organizations and intergovernmental processes to take into account the indicative criteria in their efforts to “develop” or also “implement” specialized international ABS instruments; and
- a request for information sharing on the specific genetic resources and/or specific uses, and traditional knowledge associated with genetic resources covered by a specialized instrument.
South Africa, on behalf of the African Group, requested the entire CRP be put in brackets, due to its relevance for the GBF negotiations, in particular benefit-sharing and digital sequence information. The request was accepted and the CRP was approved in brackets.
Following adoption of the report, the meeting was suspended at 10:22 am Montreal time.