Access and Benefit-Sharing (ABS), the regulation of the access to and use of genetic resources and the sharing of benefits arising from their use between providers and users, has become increasingly important in the international arena.
EU-regulation 511/2014, adopted by the European Union in 2014 to implement the Nagoya Protocol in the EU, obliges all users of genetic resources in the EU to make the necessary efforts to ensure that genetic resources and associated traditional knowledge were lawfully obtained, and that the benefits arising from their use are shared between providers and users. The project National Focal Point ABS as a point of contact for users' will ensure that adequate awareness concerning agreements relating to ABS arises within the different groups of users of genetic resources in the Netherlands, and make sure that sufficient knowledge is available on the contents of agreements, laws and regulations. This should contribute to the realization of 'supported implementation' of ABS regulations in the Netherlands.
The main activities in 2016 will be to keep the interactive, bilingual (Dutch and English) website (www.absfocalpoint.nl) up-to-date, and to interact with users of genetic resources through umbrella organizations, associations and journals. In addition, the role of Publishing Authority for the ABS Clearing House website of the CBD will be fulfilled, and contacts will be maintained with National Focal Points in other countries to maintain contacts with National Focal Points in other countries to ensure the exchange of knowledge and information.