CBD versus WTO

 
Published: Tuesday 31 January 2006

-- A turf war is being waged: the World Trade Organization (wto) and the Convention on Biodiversity (cbd) are wrangling over the control of the biodiversity industry. The issues of conservation, access and benefit sharing from trade in biodiversity had the members divided at the 11th meeting of cbd's Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice held in Montreal, Canada.

The debate turned acrimonious while discussing the issue of whether cbd should recommend to wto "the importance of enhanced market access and international trade in biodiversity-related goods".

Finally, this phrase was left out of the wto recommendation, with countries such as China, which produce commodities based on biodiversity, not wanting cbd to influence negotiations at wto. But, the biodiversity-rich Latin American nations and some international ngo s, such as the Friends of Earth, have protested against cbd's 'deference' to wto.

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