A.Administration of the Access and Benefit-sharing Clearing-House by the Secretariat
1.The Secretariat shall continue to implement and administer the Access and Benefit-sharing (ABS) Clearing-House, in accordance with Article 14 and other relevant provisions of the Nagoya Protocol, guided by the principles of inclusiveness, transparency and equity, as an Internet-based central portal and central database, with, inter alia, the following functions:
(a)Allow the submission of information in a simple, user-friendly, efficient, secure, flexible and functional manner;
(b)Provide access to information in an accessible, user-friendly, searchable and understandable manner, clearly indicating when records have been submitted by a Party or a non-Party, in order to ensure legal certainty, clarity and transparency;
(c)Design the ABS Clearing-House to be interoperable and facilitate the exchange of information with other databases and systems, in particular Parties’ databases, as well as databases of other instruments and organizations;
(d)Ensure the security of the database and its contents;
(e)Provide common formats for submitting information to the ABS Clearing-House, as appropriate, while distinguishing between mandatory and optional information without prejudice to the protection of confidential information;
(f)Review existing and develop further common formats and user roles, as necessary, while ensuring coherence and interoperability with entries submitted using existing common formats;
(g)Make the ABS Clearing-House operational in the six official languages of the United Nations;
(h)Make use, where appropriate, of controlled vocabularies which shall be translated into the official United Nations languages, to facilitate registration and retrieval of information, and to facilitate the ability to search for records in all languages;
(i)Make use of metadata about each record (i.e., descriptive identifiers such as name, date, author, etc.) to facilitate the registration and retrieval of information;
(j)Allow for a mechanism to amend or update information while preserving legal certainty, clarity and transparency, particularly in the case of a permit or its equivalent that constitutes an internationally recognized certificate of compliance. In such instances, the original permit or its equivalent constituting an internationally recognized certificate of compliance is to be retained in archived form and its status will be reflected in the record;
(k)Make use of unique identifiers generated through the ABS Clearing-House to search and retrieve information on internationally recognized certificates of compliance;
(l)Offer, upon request, an offline mechanism for Parties to register national information into the ABS Clearing-house, as well as to facilitate offline access to information held in the ABS Clearing-House;
(m)Provide timely technical assistance, on demand, to Parties for the registering and retrieving information as well as, as appropriate, to non-Parties, indigenous and local communities and other stakeholders;
(n)Offer a mechanism to provide feedback and carry out targeted surveys on the implementation and operation of the ABS Clearing-House;
(o)Facilitate the exchange of other information pursuant to the decisions taken by the Conference of the Parties serving as the meeting of the Parties to the Protocol;
(p)Perform other functions as requested by the Conference of the Parties serving as the meeting of the Parties to the Nagoya Protocol.
2.In carrying out the functions listed in the above paragraph, the Secretariat shall seek assistance from the informal advisory committee, constituted and coordinated by the Executive Secretary in a transparent manner, for technical and practical guidance with respect to the resolution of issues arising from the ongoing development of the ABS Clearing-House.
3.The ABS Clearing-House shall provide for the possibility of retrieval of information for the purpose of reporting on its activities as well as allowing Parties to refer to information relevant for their compliance with their obligation under Article 29 of the Nagoya Protocol, including:
(a)The number, regional distribution and type of records made available through the ABS Clearing-House, including the number of permits or their equivalent constituting internationally recognized certificates of compliance, as well as, the availability of information in the six official languages of the United Nations;
(b)Measurement and analytics based on the external use of the ABS Clearing-House, including the number of visitors, to help understand website performance and effectiveness.
B.Role of Parties and non-Parties with respect to the exchange of information through the ABS Clearing-House
4.When interacting with the ABS Clearing-House, Parties and non-Parties shall:
(a)Provide metadata which describes the primary data (e.g. the elements describing the content of a legislative measure chosen from a controlled vocabulary) to the ABS Clearing-House in an official language of the United Nations, while recognizing that the primary data, being the substantive content of the ABS Clearing-House (e.g. a legislative measure), may be submitted to the ABS Clearing-House in the original language, including those of indigenous and local communities;
(b)Endeavour to provide courtesy translations of the primary data submitted to the ABS Clearing-House in one of the official languages of the United Nations;
(c)Where applicable, enable the active participation of indigenous and local communities for the exchange of information related to traditional knowledge associated with genetic resources;
(d)Not include in their submissions confidential data, since all information published in the ABS Clearing-House is publicly available. Through the act of publishing information, the publishing authority confirms that the information published is not confidential.
5.The national focal point on access and benefit-sharing shall communicate to the Secretariat the designation of the publishing authority for the ABS Clearing-House. The functions of the publishing authority shall include the following:
(a)Authorizing the publication of all national records registered in the ABS Clearing-House, and preparing draft records, as appropriate;
(b)Ensuring that the information made available on the ABS Clearing-House is complete, non-confidential, relevant and up-to-date.
6.The publishing authority can designate one or more national authorized users as needed. The function of national authorized users shall be to assist the publishing authorities in the preparation of draft national records.