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Pure Appl. Chem., Vol. 68, No.12, pp. 2325-2332, 1996


Preservation and utilization of natural biodiversity in context of search for economically valuable medicinal biota
(Technical Report)

> Abstract
> Background
> Issues
> Recommendations
> Appendices
  1. The Manila Declaration
  2. The Melaka Accord

The Melaka Accord

Resolutions ratified by ASOMPS VIII: Eighth Asian Symposium on Medicinal Plants, Spices and Other Natural Products. 12-16 June 1994, Melaka, Malaysia.

Given that in the time since the Manila Declaration was adopted at ASOMPS VII in February 1992:

  • that the Manila Declaration has been endorsed by the Bukit Tinggi Declaration in October 1992,
  • the UNCED developed the Conventions on Biological Diversity in 1992 providing for:
    • the conservation of biological diversity
    • the sustainable use of its components;
    • and the fair and equitable sharing of the benefits arising out of the utilization of genetic resources
  • it has been confirmed that the UN Law of the Sea Convention will come into force in November 1994 and recognizing that:-
  • the region represented by ASOMPS participants has a wide range of terrestrial and marine biological diversity
  • the region has a significant human resource and skills base to conserve and use its genetic resources
  • many biological species are not confined in their occurrence to political boundaries

ASOMPS VIII has considered the benefits to be accrued by adopting consistent regional approaches to: legislations, policies and procedures relevant to accessing and conserving biological diversity

  • involving the scientists of the different component nations in training, research and development related to the sustainable use of that biological diversity
  • ensuring the fair and equitable sharing of the knowledge and financial benefits arising from utilization of a Nation's genetic resources

ASOMPS VIII has therefore adopted the resolutions that:

1. Within 1994 each national group of scientists and technologists transmit to their relevant governments the Manila Declaration, noting that its objectives are consistent with those of the UN Convention on Biodiversity, encourages its incorporation in relevant national strategies on conservation of biodiversity, and request that it be brought to appropriate regional bodies, such as ASEAN, for adoption on a regional basis, as a part of this bioregional approach to conservation of biodiversity, within the overall concept of ecologically sustainable development.

As a matter of urgency all nations should develop workable, straight-forward legislation to control the collection and conservation of the biota under their jurisdiction which will be used for bioprospecting.

2. The scientists of each country represented at ASOMPS VIII, in conjunction with the appropriate government agencies in their countries and with appropriate legal advisors should within six (6) months of this symposium prepare and submit to UNESCO-ROSTSEA a draft version of their countries proposed legislation and guidelines on access to, research on, and use of the biological resources of their countries in order to ensure equitable and sustainable development.

UNESCO shall be requested to organize, within eight (8) months of this symposium a meeting of a working group to:

(a) consider the various draft legislation and guidelines

(b) formulate an agreed set of minimum regulations and guidelines concerning these biological resources which might be applicable to all countries involved

The working group should consist of some 20-25 people with scientific, governmental and legal representation from each of the representative countries involved so that definitive and authoritative proposals can be formulated during the meeting.

UNESCO shall be requested to distribute this agreed set of minimum legislation and guidelines together with the various countries' drafts and relevant comments from the working group, to all countries involved in ASOMPS VIII so that these countries can optimize their own legislation and ensure compatibility with those of other countries in the region.

3. We recommend that journal editors, peer reviewers and professional societies should when reviewing manuscripts, grant applications or conference papers attempt to ensure that host country collaborators receive appropriate recognition for their contribution.

4. We recommend that in countries where permit infrastructure exists, all researchers formally acknowledge permit approval by citation of permit number or equivalent) in manuscripts, technical reports and conference papers, and that copies of such papers be provided annually to the permit authorities. In countries where no such permit legislation exists, the national government shall be encouraged to develop such legislation.

5. Nations within the region support the concept of developing regional screening facilities as the first step in stimulating the formation of bioregional drug discovery and development consortia, and establish a working party to further develop this concept.



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