Info Service on WTO and Trade Issues (Apr19/22)
New APBREBES Publication: A Dysfunctional Plant Variety Protection System: Ten Years of UPOV Implementation in Francophone Africa
More than 10 years after Annex X entered into force on 1 January 2006, the Working Paper studies how Annex X has been operationalized, the impact and relevance of UPOV 1991 for the region and, in particular, whether the promises of UPOV 1991 were ever realized for the 17 countries in the OAPI region. Twelve of these countries are categorized by the United Nations as least developed countries.
results of the investigation are staggering. It points to a dysfonctionnal
PVP system that does not fit the socio-economic and agricultural conditions
prevailing in the region. Of the current 17 OAPI member states, only
seven have made use of the system, at great cost and at the expense
of public funds. The private sector’s use of the system in the first
10 years of operation of Annex X is negligible. The system has also
not delivered any significant increase in plant breeding activities
nor led to the development of the seed industry across the region.
In fact, a major concern is the misappropriation of local and farmer
varieties through the PVP system.
This shows, once again, that the top-down approach of exporting legal frameworks intended for developed countries to developing countries which have different circumstances, is a flawed colonial strategy, with significant costs and missed opportunities for people of the OAPI region.
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