The Missing Link in ABS. The Relationship between Resource and Product

Journal of Environmental Policy and Law, Vol 46, Nos 3-4, 2016, pp. 227-237

There are raised expectations regarding the Nagoya Protocol on Access to Genetic Resources and the Fair and Equitable Sharing of Benefits Arising from their Utilization to the Convention on Biological Diversity (NP) (2010). This article explores the basis for these expecations. What is still relatively unexplored is the mechanism for linking each particular genetic resource with the product or process purportedly created utilising that resource, that eventually generates the benefits to be shared. Drawing a general conclusion that holding genetic resources in a collection cuts off the benefit-sharing obligation would be the task of a democratic process rather than a private contract arrangement. Private contracts on mutually agreed terms on the other hand, would be the right venue for the resolution of several practical difficulties and dilemmas. In conclusion, ABS must work on clarifying the missing link between the genetic resources and the product or process in the market.