Mr Jensen mentioned that the proposed regulations set out obligations for users of genetic resources and traditional knowledge (TK) associated with genetic resources in the EU. They would oblige all users to exercise due diligence to ascertain that genetic resources and TK associated with genetic resources used were accessed in accordance with applicable legal requirements and that, where relevant, benefits are fairly and equitable shared upon mutually agreed terms. To that end, all users would need to seek, keep and transfer to subsequent users certain information relevant for ABS. The proposal sets out minimum features of due diligence measures. Per Mr Jensen, the EU draft regulations also foresee a system of EU-trusted collections that would substantially lower the risk that illegally acquired genetic resources are used in the EU.
In the responses from participants, some stated that African countries should be extremely vigilant in accepting the use of resources because this provision shifts the burden of compliance to Collections. Participants were also of the view that the notion of “due diligence” in the draft should be clarified. They were also concerned by the fact that misappropriation of TK is not considered an offence in the draft regulations. Furthermore, participants were also concerned that the only TK that is protected under the draft regulation is TK included in Mutually Agreed Terms (MAT). They argued that it is worrying that this excludes a whole range of TK that has not been covered in the relevant MAT contracts.