COMIFAC/GTBAC: Central Africa in one accord in Douala, Cameroon
From 20th to 23rd October, the 9th meeting of BWGCA was held in Douala and presided over by M. Etienne MASUMBUKO, Representative of the Executive Secretary of the COMIFAC. The meeting brought together representatives of COMIFAC's space countries, international organizations, civil society, German technical cooperation GTZ and Franco-German Office for COMIFAC's support.
M. Olivier RUKUNDO, representative of the African initiative for capacity building on Access and Benefit-sharing (ABS) and contributor at the opening ceremony cordially announced the entry of two new Scandinavian partners namely Norway (member of the PFBC) as a permanent partner and Denmark. In addition, he strongly underlined as first stage the organization of a Panafrican ministerial conference on ABS which will be held in spring 2010 in order to generate a better sensitization and a political support on the last true negotiations' meeting which will be held in Colombia in March 2010. On his side, M. MASUMBUKO declared in his welcoming speech the opening of the workshop after having presented expectations of COMIFAC Secretariat in terms of the adoption the common African position for the next convention's schedules on biological diversity slated for November 2009 in Montreal.
In addition to this opening ceremony, participants were introduced and agenda of the meeting adopted. Workshops continued in plenary by thematic presentations focused on nine points including amongst other things: Presentation of the current state of negotiations on ABS and stakes of the Montreal meeting of on one hand and the presentation of the context, the evolution of Article (8j) thematic within the CDB and the report of the meeting of Nairobi with regard to the preparation of the CAL to WP Article (8J) on the other hand. As outcomes of presentations, sessions of group workshops were organized in other to examine and clarify the position of the African group concerning the international system, and to develop a sub-regional common position on the Article (8j) and its related provisions.
With the support of M. Emmanuel BAYANI NGOYI, Pilot of the BWGCA, Dr. Rufin Antoine OKO, Copilot of the BWGCA and Olivier Rukundo, GTZ consultant, participants could adopt a joint position of Central Africa in relation to the enforceable text prepared by the African group on ABS and with respect to Article (8j) of the CBD. In addition, they decided that exchanges facilitation should rotate after presentations between focal points and decided that the examination of the TR of the study on "the development of ABS strategy of COMIFAC "should be done after the validation of the study on the identification of elements which can be used as a basis for the development of the ABS strategy of COMIFAC". To conclude, participants made recommendations for the States and the consultant of the study on strategy APA of the sub region.
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