Negotiation of Global Biodiversity Agreement to resume in Montreal

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A special three-day meeting to advance an ambitious Global Biodiversity Framework agreement to bend the curve on nature loss will take place in Montreal 3-5 December.

It will be the world community’s 5th meeting to negotiate the agreement’s outline, goals and targets, which will be considered for adoption immediately thereafter during the 15th Conference of Parties to the UN Convention on Biological Diversity. COP15, chaired by China, is now scheduled 7-19 Dec. in Montreal, Canada. A high-level segment of the conference will take place 13-15 Dec.

Said Elizabeth Maruma Mrema, Executive Secretary of the Convention on Biological Diversity: “The 4th negotiating session in Nairobi in June was intended to be the last one but an agreement is not yet there. While progress in Nairobi was slow, progress was made, including on the contentious issue of digital sequencing information for genetic resources. The parties will have to decide in December whether digital sequencing information will be part of the framework or dealt with separately. The additional negotiating days immediately before COP15 will be crucial to that question and more, necessitating a small shift in the dates of what will be an historic summit.”

Originally planned for Kunming, China in 2020, COP15 was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic and later split into a two-part event. Part 1 was successfully held in Kunming last October, at which Chinese President XI Jinping and other State leaders from eight Parties, as well as the UN Secretary General, made online presentations, reinforcing their commitment to addressing the biodiversity crisis.

COP15 part 1 was also highlighted by the Kunming Declaration and President Xi Jinping’s announcement that China would invest RMB 1.5 billion to establish the Kunming Biodiversity Fund, providing strong political impetus to global biodiversity governance and a solid foundation for the second part of COP 15.

The decision to relocate the conclusion of COP15 to Montreal was made last month by the Bureau of the Conference of the Parties, in consultation with the CBD Secretariat and the Governments of China and Canada.

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