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About the AHTEG

The Ad Hoc Technical Expert Group on Socio-economic Considerations was established by COP-MOP through decision BS-VI/13, to develop conceptual clarity in the context of paragraph 1 of Article 26.

Experts were selected in consultation with the COP-MOP Bureau and in accordance with the terms of reference specified in the Annex to decision BS-VI/13, and the applicable rules of procedure for meetings under the Protocol.

The meeting of the Ad Hoc Technical Expert Group on Socio-economic Considerations was held in Seoul, Republic of Korea from 17 to 21 February 2014.

Pursuant to paragraph 4 of decision BS-VI/13, the Ad Hoc Technical Expert Group on Socio-economic Considerations examined: (i) the outcomes of the online forums that were held throughout March and April of 2013 and the four regional online real-time conferences that took place in June 2013; and (ii) the compilation and review of information on socio-economic considerations (global overview) that the Executive Secretary had commissioned, in order to develop conceptual clarity on socio-economic considerations arising from the impact of living modified organisms on the conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity, especially with regard to the value of biological diversity to indigenous and local communities. Documents prepared for the meeting are available here.

The AHTEG agreed to a list of elements of a framework for conceptual clarity on socio-economic considerations as contained in the annex to its report. The AHTEG also made a recommendation for the seventh meeting of the COP-MOP to extend the AHTEG.

At its seventh meeting, the COP-MOP took note of the report of the Ad Hoc Technical Expert Group on Socio-economic Considerations (AHTEG). In decision BS-VII/13, Parties extended the AHTEG and determined that it should work, in a stepwise approach, on: (i) the further development of conceptual clarity on socio-economic considerations arising from the impact of living modified organisms on the conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity, and (ii) developing an outline for guidance with a view to making progress towards achieving operational objective 1.7 of the Strategic Plan and its outcomes.

Due to the lack of sufficient funding to organize a face-to-face meeting of the AHTEG an on-line discussion was held from 9 May to 17 June 2016 to enable the AHTEG to undertake certain aspects of its mandate, focusing in particular on the further development of conceptual clarity. Through the online discussion, the AHTEG agreed on a revised Framework for Conceptual Clarity.

The outcomes and conclusions of the online discussion, including the revised Framework for Conceptual Clarity, are contained in the annex of document UNEP/CBD/BS/COP-MOP/MOP/8/13 submitted to the eighth meeting of the Conference of the Parties serving as the meeting of the Parties to the Protocol.

At its eighth meeting, COP-MOP took note of the revised Framework for Conceptual Clarity and decided to extend the mandate of the Ad Hoc Technical Expert Group on Socio-Economic Considerations, replacing any experts, as needed, including indigenous peoples and local communities as observers, to allow it to meet face-to-face, subject to the availability of funds, to work on the guidelines envisaged under the outcomes for operational objective 1.7 of the Strategic Plan for the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety. In the same decision the COP-MOP urged Parties to provide the necessary funds for a face-to-face meeting of the Ad Hoc Technical Expert Group on Socio-Economic Considerations, ensuring the full and effective participation of indigenous peoples and local communities, supported by such online discussions as may be necessary to achieve its mandate. COP-MOP requested the AHTEG to submit a report for consideration by the COP-MOP at its ninth meeting.