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Views exchanged on marine genetic resources at international conference September 12,2018   |  Source: IISD

At the first session of the Intergovernmental Conference (IGC) on an international legally binding instrument (ILBI) under the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) on the conservation and sustainable use of marine biodiversity of areas beyond national jurisdiction (ABNJ), the informal working group on marine genetic resources (MGRs), continued to exchange views on:

-- scope;
-- access and benefit-sharing (ABS); and
-- intellectual property rights (IPRs).

Expressing caution, with the US, about monetary benefit-sharing due to costly, difficult, and lengthy commercialization of MGRs, JAPAN called for a practical and realistic ILBI, and for deciding at a later stage on the scope in relation to MGRs.

The US, with Canada and Iceland, opposed by the FSM and Mexico, cautioned against including MGRs ex situ. CARICOM, the US, and Switzerland supported applying the ILBI to MGR collection only after entry into force.

Bangladesh, Indonesia, Switzerland, and Ecuador favored including both fish used as a commodity and as a source of MGRs under the ILBI. The US, Honduras, and Iceland opposed including the use of fish as commodity. The Russian Federation called for fishing and marine scientific research (MSR) to be carried out freely, noting, with others, that


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