Farmers rights international level concepts and actions
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Farmers’ Rights – international level concepts and actions. Niels Louwaars Biopolicies specialist. This morning. Some history Developments in IT PGRFA, CBD and WIPO. Some history. Different concepts arose in the 1980s FR to balance Breeder’s Rights (USA)

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Farmers rights international level concepts and actions

Farmers’ Rights – international level concepts and actions

Niels Louwaars

Biopolicies specialist

This morning
This morning actions

  • Some history

  • Developments in IT PGRFA, CBD and WIPO

Some history
Some history actions

  • Different concepts arose in the 1980s

    • FR to balance Breeder’s Rights (USA)

    • FR as a right arising from the contribution of farmers to genetic resources (International Undertaking in 1989)

      “These rights are vested in the

      international community as trustee

      for future generations of farmers”

    • Via Campesina: FR are basic rights to the basic needs of farmers for livelihood and to contribute to food security, incl. access to land, inputs etc.

International law since 2004 international treaty
International law since 2004: International Treaty actions

  • The Contracting Parties agree that the responsibility for realizing Farmers’ Rights . . . rests with national governments.

  • FR include:

    • (a) protection of traditional knowledge relevant to PGRFA;

    • (b) the right to equitably participate in sharing benefits arising from the utilization of PGRFA; and

    • (c) the right to participate in making decisions, at the national level, on matters related to the conservation and sustainable use of PGRFA.

Art 9 3
Art 9.3 actions

  • Nothing in this article should be interpreted as to limit the rights that farmers have to save, exchange and sell farm-saved seed, subject to national law and as appropriate.

Farmers rights international level concepts and actions
So actions

  • No more role for FR at international level . . . . . .

  • However: the multilateral system for access and benefit sharing includes a benefit sharing fund managed by the IT-secretariat.

    • Benefits have to be directed to farmers who develop and conserve PGRFA

Benefit sharing fund
Benefit Sharing fund actions

  •  First Call for Proposals 2010 under the Benefit-sharing Fund

  • Theme: help ensure sustainable food security by assisting farmers to adapt to climate change through a targeted set of high impact activities on the conservation and sustainable use of PGRFA.

  • > 400 pre-proposals through the national authorities; 136 invitations for full proposals

    • to develop strategic action plans

    • “immediate action projects”

    • Total budget “at least 10 million US$”

Cbd nagoya protocol 2010
CBD: Nagoya Protocol 2010 actions

  • International regime on access and benefit sharing

    • Genetic resources

    • Traditional Knowledge

  • No mention of farmers or FR, but relevant because generic

    • Primarily about international transfer but . . .

    • Partis shall – in accordance with national law, ensure PIC from local and indigenous communities – with special mention of women

International aspects
International aspects actions

  • Clearing House mechanism for documents (laws, contracts)

  • Promotion of scientific collaboration / technology transfer and support of least developed countries for capacity building etc.

  • IT-PGRFA is explicitly mentioned several times

  • Nagoya Protocol thus also deals with aspects of FR!

  • However, “Provisions shall not affect rights and obligations derived from any existing agreement”

Farmers rights international level concepts and actions

How happy are actions


That is to be seen!

Igc on genetic resources tk and folklore1
IGC on genetic resources, TK and folklore actions

  • Decisions 16th session of May 2010 ref TK:

    • The Committee invited the Secretariat to prepare and make available for the next session of the Committee as a working document, a further draft of document WIPO/GRTKF/IC/16/5.

    • as an information document . . . a list and brief technical explanation of various forms in which traditional knowledge may be found (such as “codified/non-codified”, “disclosed”/”non-disclosed”);

    • a technical information document on the meanings of the term “public domain” in the intellectual property system, with special reference to the protection of traditional knowledge and traditional cultural expressions

Conclusion: actions

  • On benefit sharing and TK, some int’l developments ref. IT-funding; and political advancements in CBD!

  • On TK at WIPO: interesting debates

  • On participation in decision making: no int’l developments

  • On save-use-exchange and sell: no int’l developments