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Fifth meeting of the Ad Hoc Open-ended Working Group on Article 8(j) and Related Provisions

15-19 October 2007
Montreal, Canada

Hightlights from Monday, 15 October


The fifth meeting of the Ad hoc Open-ended Intersessional Working Group on Article 8(j) (traditional knowledge) and related provisions (Article 8(j) WG) of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) opened in Montreal, Canada on Monday 15 October 2007. In morning and afternoon plenary sessions, delegates: observed a Mohawk opening ceremony; heard general statements and a report on the outcomes of the fifth meeting of the Working Group on Access and Benefit-sharing (ABS WG); considered recommendations of the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues (UNPFII); and debated progress on the Article 8(j) work programme. Delegates then broke into two sub-working groups (SWG). SWG I addressed the composite report on traditional knowledge (TK), and SWG II addressed mechanisms for indigenous participation.
Photo: Mohawk opening ceremony

Opening Plenary
CBD Executive Secretary Ahmed Djoghlaf, COP President Fernando Coimbra, Brazil, and Olivier Jalbert, CBD Secretariat
The International Indigenous Forum on Biodiversity (left), said any international ABS regime must be informed by the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP). Robert McLean, Canada (right), said that the UNDRIP is not legally binding but reiterated commitment to Article 8(j) implementation.

Maria Elisa Oliveira, Portugal, speaking on behalf of the EU (left), requested that the Article 8(j) WG address impacts of biomass production and consumption on indigenous peoples. David Dutton, Australia (right), outlined reasons why it cannot support UNDRIP.


Gina Malia Sui Lin Nobrega, Na Koa Ikaika O Ka Lahui Hawai'i (left), called for identifying best practices of indigenous peoples' management of territories and resources, with a view to merging the approaches with modern techniques. Abdul-Hakim Aulaiah, Yemen (right), for the Asia and Pacific Region (right), stressed the need for fair and equitable benefit-sharing with indigenous and local communities.


Jacob Pratt, Emerging Indigenous Leaders Institute (left), for the Indigenous Youth Caucus, called on delegates to remember that generations yet unborn will bear the burden of the decisions taken today. Valerie Etim, World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) (center), described its Memorandum of Understanding with the CBD and described its voluntary fund for indigenous participation. Lucia Fernanad Jofej Kaingang, for the Indigenous Women's Biodiversity Network (right), affirmed that indigenous knowledge is not in the public domain but rather regulated by indigenous legal systems.

ABS Working Group Co-Chairs Timothy Hodges, Canada (left), reported on outcomes of the fifth meeting of the ABS Working Group held from 8-12 October. CBD Executive Secretary Ahmed Djoghlaf speaks with Nicola Breier, Germany (right)
Kimo Goree, Director, IISD Reporting Services, speaks with ENB writer Stefan Jungcurt and Matthias Buck, European Community (left). Kimo Goree speaks with Dagmar Lohan and Eva Axthelm, Germany.
Sub-Working Group I
Valerie Normand, CBD Secretariat, Sub-Working Group 1 Co-Chairs Estabancio Castro Diaz, Central America Region, and Deon Alexander Stewart, Bahamas, and John Scott, CBD Secretariat
Co-Chair Deon Stewart with John Scott, CBD Secretariat
Sub-Working Group II

Markus Lehmann, CBD Secretariat (left), during Sub-Working Group II. Co-Chairs Gunn-Britt Retter, Europe and the Arctic Region, and Nicola Breier, Germany

Side Event: Model Forests and Indigenous Collaboration Towards Their Success. Organized by the Canadian Forestry Service

Wendy Vasbinder, Natural Resources Canada (NRCan), introduced the Model Forest Programme, which was set up in 1992 to support sustainable forestry and to develop partnerships among aboriginal communities and other stakeholders.She explained that the Forest Communities Programme is an evolution of the Model Forest Programme.

Derrick Neeposh, President of Waswanipi Cree Model Forest (left), introduced the Model Forest's three principles: promoting participation of the local community in land management through knowledge sharing; promoting adoption of sustainable forest management principles and practices by the community; and designing communication mechanisms for technology and knowledge transfer. Sylvie Gauthier, NRCan (right), introduced the International Model Forest Network, a voluntary peer-to-peer association established in 1995 that grew out of Canada's Model Forest program and now covers 40 sites. She said that as many as 25 new model forest sites were being planned in Russia over the next four years.
Miscellaneous Photos


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