GIZ COMIFAC ABS Project: Putting women at the centre of the ABS process in COMIFAC countries



The women of the African Women’s Network for Sustainable Development (REFADD) are now equipped to participate in the Access to genetic resources and the fair and equitable sharing of the benefits arising out of their utilization (ABS) process in their respective countries and build local ABS projects. They are helping their countries develop ABS regimes to specifications they themselves have defined.



ABS is especially important to developing countries, particularly the countries of the Central African Forest Commission (COMIFAC), which harbor one of the world’s most diverse wildlife communities, but receive no compensation for the exploitation of these resources. Stakeholders, especially women, are not yet all aware of the development opportunities ABS offers, hence the need to strengthen women’s capacities to fully participate in the process.  It is with this end in view that the GIZ COMIFAC Support Program supports the involvement of women in the ABS process. Through the African Women’s Network for Sustainable Development (REFADD), the national focal points and women in grassroots member organizations of the network have been trained over the course of several workshops on the following topics: 

  • Women and the ABS process in Central Africa: How to shape implementation at national level from 21 to 22 February 2013 in Brazzaville, Congo;
  • Mechanisms for mobilizing ABS funds, from 17 to 20 November 2015 in Libreville, Gabon;
  • Key aspects of Access to genetic resources and the fair and equitable sharing of the benefits arising out of their utilization (ABS) provided under the Nagoya Protocol from 16 to 18 May 2017 in Brazzaville, Congo.




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