The Cartagena Protocol

The Convention on Biological Diversity addresses the issue of biosafety in Article 8 “In situ conservation” and in Article 19 “Management of biotechnology and distribution of its benefits”.
Article 8 (g) requires the Parties to "establish or maintain means to regulate, manage or control the risks associated with the use and release of living modified organisms resulting from biotechnology which are likely to have adverse environmental impacts that could affect the conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity, taking also into account the risks to human health".

Article 19.3 calls on Parties to "consider the need for and modalities of a protocol setting out appropriate procedures, including, in particular, advance informed agreement, in the field of the safe transfer, handling and use of any living modified organism resulting from biotechnology that may have adverse effect on the conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity".

On this basis, in January 2000 the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety was adopted.

In accordance with the precautionary approach contained in Principle 15 of the Rio Declaration, the objective of the Protocol is to contribute to ensuring an adequate level of protection in the field of the safe transfer, handling and use of living modified organisms resulting from modern biotechnology that may have adverse effects on the conservation and sustainable use of biological diversity, taking also into account risks to human health, and specifically focusing on  transboundary movements. To know more

The European Union ratified the Protocol by Council Decision 2002/628/EC.

Italy ratified the Protocol by Law no. 27 of 15 January 2004.

Pursuant to Article 29 of the Protocol, the Conference of the Parties serving as the Meeting of the Parties to the Cartagena Protocol (COP-MOP) promotes the implementation of the Protocol, and, where appropriate, considers and adopts amendments, makes recommendations, establishes subsidiary bodies, cooperates with the competent international organizations and with intergovernmental and non-governmental bodies. The first meeting of the Conference of the Parties took place in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, (23-27 February 2004). The following meetings were held annually until 2006, and then every two years until the COP-MOP 9, which was held in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt, from 17 to 29 November 2018 .

 

The Nagoya-Kuala Lumpur Supplementary Protocol on liability and redress

The Nagoya Kuala Lumpur Supplementary Protocol on liability and redress to the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety, adopted as a supplementary agreement to the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety, aims to contribute to the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity providing international rules and procedures in the field of liability and redress for the living modified organisms.

The European Union has ratified the Supplementary Protocol with the Council Decision of 12 February 2013.

The Supplementary Protocol entered into force on 5 March 2018.

Italy has ratified the Nagoya - Kuala Lumpur Supplementary Protocol with the law 16 January 2019, n. 7.

National reports on the implementation of the Protocol

Article 33 of the CBD established that Each Party shall, at intervals to be determined by the Conference of the Parties, report on the measures for the implementation of the Protocol.

Italian Interim Report (2005)

First Italian Report (2007)

Second Italian Report (2011)

Third Italian Report (2015)

The Strategic Plan for the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety for the period 2011-2020

At its fifth meeting, the COP- MOP 5, with the decision BS-V/16, adopted the Strategic Plan for the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety, covering the period 2011 to 2020. The Strategic Plan comprises a vision, a mission statement and five strategic objectives. The focal areas underlying the five strategic objectives are as follows:

  1. Facilitating the establishment and further development of systems for the implementation of the Protocol;
  2. Capacity-building;
  3. Compliance and review;
  4. Information sharing; and
  5. Outreach and cooperation.


The COP- MOP urged governments and organizations to align their actions for implementing the Protocol with the Strategic Plan and to allocate adequate human and financial resources to expedite the implementation of the Strategic Plan. It also decided to conduct a midterm evaluation of the Strategic Plan after five years during the COP- MOP 8.