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Funded by EU-China Biodiversity Program

RESEARCH REPORT ON INSTITUTIONAL CAPACITY BUILDING TO IMPLEMENT CONVENTION ON BIOLOGICAL DIVERSITY (The Third Draft)

IMPLEMENTING UNIT NANJING INSTITUTE OF ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE OF STATE ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION ADMINISTRATION BY COOPERATION WITH COLLEGE OF ENVIRONMENT SCIENCE AND ENGINEERING OF PEKING UNIVERSITY SCHOOL OF LAW OF WUFAN UNIVERSITY SUPERVISION AGENCY STATE ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION ADMINISTRATION

June, 2008


TABLE OF CONTENTS

1.

BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE ............................................................................................ IV

2.

BRIEF OVERVIEW OF OTHER COUNTRIES’ INSTITUTIONAL CAPACITY TO

IMPLEMENT CONVENTION ON BIOLOGICAL DIVERSITY ................................................ VII 2.1 EUROPEAN UNION ........................................................................................................................ VII 2.2. ASIA ...............................................................................................................................................X 2.3. AFRICA ...........................................................................................................................................X 2.4. SOUTH AMERICA ...........................................................................................................................XI 2.5. LESSONS LEARNED FROM OTHER COUNTRIES’ EXPERIENCES IN IMPLEMENTING THE CBD....... XIII 3.

CURRENT STATUS OF INSTITUTIONAL CAPACITY TO IMPLEMENT RELEVANT

INTERNATIONAL CONVENTIONS IN CHINA .......................................................................... XV 3.1 THE CONVENTION ON INTERNATIONAL TRADE IN ENDANGERED SPECIES OF WILD FAUNA AND FLORA ................................................................................................................................................ XV 3.2 UN CONVENTION TO COMBAT DESERTIFICATION ......................................................................... XV 3.3 THE RAMSAR CONVENTION ON WETLANDS ................................................................................ XVI 3.4 UNITED NATIONS FRAMEWORK CONVENTION ON CLIMATE CHANGE......................................... XVII 3.5 SUMMARY OF THE LESSONS FROM INSTITUTION ARRANGEMENT AND COORDINATING MECHANISM FOR IMPLEMENTING RELEVANT INTERNATIONAL CONVENTIONS ..................................................... XVII

4. ASSESSMENT OF CURRENT STATUS AND OBSTACLES OF INSTITUTIONAL CAPACITY FOR IMPLEMENTATION OF THE CBD................................................................XIX 4.1 CURRENT STATUS OF INSTITUTIONAL CAPACITY FOR IMPLEMENTATION ..................................... XIX 4.2 OBSTACLES OF IMPLEMENTATION CAPACITY ............................................................................... XX 5.

NEEDS AND SCHEMES FOR STRENGTHENING INSTITUTIONAL CAPACITY

BUILDING UNDER THE NEW CIRCUMSTANCES ..................................................................XXI 5.1 CHALLENGES AND OPPORTUNITIES ............................................................................................. XXI 5.2 EXISTING PROBLEMS ................................................................................................................. XXIV 5.3 STRENGTHENING THE SCHEMES FOR INSTITUTIONAL CAPACITY BUILDING ................................ XXVI 5.4 SCHEMES FOR STRENGTHENING THE INSTITUTIONAL CAPACITY BUILDING TO PROVIDE TECHNICAL SUPPORT FOR IMPLEMENTATION .................................................................................................... XXXIII 5.5 GUARANTEE MEASURES FOR STRENGTHENING THE INSTITUTIONAL CAPACITY BUILDING FOR THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THE CBD ...................................................................................................... XXXV

5.6 BUILDING COORDINATING MECHANISM FOR THE IMPLEMENTATION OF BIODIVERSITY-RELATED INTERNATIONAL CONVENTIONS ....................................................................................................XXXVI

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APPENDIX: RESEARCH REPORT ON MAJOR COUNTRIES’ INSTITUTIONAL CAPACITY BUILDING TO IMPLEMENT CONVENTION ON BIOLOGICAL DIVERSITY 1. AUSTRALIA 2. BRAZIL 3. COSTA RICA 4 INDIA 5 SOUTH AFRICA 6. PHILIPPINE 7. GERMANY 8. NORWAY 9. SWEDEN 10. GENERAL PRICIPLES

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RESEARCH REPORT ON INSTITUTIONAL CAPACITY BUILDING TO IMPLEMENT CONVENTION ON BIOLOGICAL DIVERSITY

1.

Background and Purpose

It has been fourteen years since the Convention on Biological Diversity (hereinafter referred to as CBD) came into effect from the end of 1993. The tasks of implementing CBD became more and more concrete, which cover all ranges of issues related to biodiversity, from species resources to genetic resources, from terrestrial biodiversity to marine biodiversity, from forest ecosystem to pasture and polar ecosystem, from nature reserve to agricultural biodiversity, from biosafety of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) to prevention of alien invasive species, from technology transfer to protection of traditional knowledge, etc. The task to implement CBD is huge and its scope is very extensive. Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety is a binding legal instrument under the CBD. Since it entered into force from 2003, three meetings of the Conference of the Parties serving as the Meeting of the Parties to the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety (COP-MOP) have been convened. These COP-MOP meetings put forward a series of implementation objectives and tasks on issues such as risk assessment and management of GMOs and transboundary transporting. The Implementation this paper refers to means implementing the Convention on Biological Diversity and Biosafety Protocol. The 8th Conference of the Parties (COP) held in Brazil in 2006 had in-depth discussions on a wide range of topics, in particular on island biodiversity, biodiversity of dry and sub-humid lands, recommendation of classification of global biodiversity; access to and benefit sharing of genetic resources, protection of traditional knowledge, communication, education and public awareness. More than thirty issues have been discussed, including marine biodiversity, agricultural biodiversity, protected areas, incentive measures, liabilities and redress, biodiversity and climate change, etc, and thirty-six decisions have been passed. 2010 biodiversity target adopted by the 6th Conference of the Parties to CBD requires the Parties to step up efforts to achieve by 2010 a significant reduction of the current rate of biodiversity loss at the global, regional and national level. This target was subsequently endorsed by the World Summit on Sustainable Development and the United Nations General Assembly. However, there are measurable indicators to assess progress at the global level towards 2010 target, which require all countries, including China tremendous efforts. China is the Party both to the Convention on Biological Diversity and Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety. China is also one of the mega-biodiversity countries. In the decade of CBD in operation, China is proactively participating in CBD related actives, implementing CBD (including Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety), making significant progress on protecting biodiversity that iv


received worldwide recognition. In particular, numbers and area proportions of nature reserve established in recent decades have exceeded international average level. Though most of these nature reserves are poorly funded and hence poorly managed, the protected area system has effectively protect domestic biodiversity to some degree that make great contribution to the global biodiversity. However, as China now is under rapid development, in order to bring into compliance with CBD, China is facing tremendous challenges, which include balancing resources, economic and social development and biodiversity protection. Because of its large population, China is under great pressure to use biological resources. Compared to other developing mega-biodiversity counties, like India and Brazil, China has been left behind in institutional capacity building on biodiversity conservation. For example, India promulgated National Biodiversity Act and established a cross sector body --National Biodiversity Authority. It is difficult for China to establish such an integrated implementation body as so complicated institutional problem. China, however, should have a long-term plan on capacity building for implementation to be able to truly act as a responsible country in the international community. It is hopeful to improve the situation as the institutional reforming in State Council level will be continued in near future. Lack of implementation capacity seems the biggest challenge China meets in CBD implementation. The following gaps are visible:  No comprehensive and special legal instrument exists to protect biodiversity and the current policy and legal system is insufficient.  Lack of technical support as relevant research remain at a superficial level and experts’ capacity needs to be improved  Lack of partnership to integrate all kinds of capacities, such as insufficient communication between the implementation offices for other conventions related to biodiversity conservation.  Lack of sufficient fiscal support as biodiversity has not yet been mainstreamed to the national and local planning;  Lack of coordination between central government and local governments, no effective incentive measures in place to mobilize local governments to take actions;  Lack of human resources in the implementation office and its power to coordinate work is weak as the CBD implementation office has no administration staffing quota. In order to make the Convention effective in China, these gaps urgently need to be bridged. Therefore, strengthening the institutional capacity for CBD implementation becomes the high priority for conservation of biodiversity. Capacity building includes following aspects: organizational and coordination capacity of national implementation authority, technical capacity, partnership with stakeholders and coordinating implementation of relevant international conventions to increase effect. The most important aspect of capacity building is organizational and coordination capacity of national implementation authority, which shall be the core of capacity building, because a powerful national implementation authority is the foundation and starting point for effective coordination of implementation efforts, forming a strong partnership for conservation of biodiversity, building a

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professional technical support system and increasing effectiveness of implementation of other international conventions. This report aims to study the measures undertaken in institutional capacity building for implementation of CBD and recommend a scheme on how to strengthen the national institutional capacity building for the reference of authority in charge of institution reform. Adopting this proposed scheme to strengthen the institutional capacity of biodiversity conservation will make the implementation authority truly play the leading role in protecting and sustainably using China’s biological resources.

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2. Brief Overview of Other Countries’ Institutional Capacity to Implement Convention on Biological Diversity 2.1 European Union Europe started protecting environment at an early stage. Environmental Agencies in European Countries are well positioned to be the leading agency for implementation at the signature of the Convention of Biological Diversity. National Environmental Agency and relevant organization set policies, regulations and action plans, and then the lower government bodies or relevant agencies implements these policies, regulations and plans accordingly at the regional and local level. In institutional capacity building for CBD implementation, European countries preferred to strengthen existing institutional framework by increasing appropriate number of personnel, comprising experts from various fields to build up an implementation organ having strong operational capacity and legally binding authority. Such organ will adopt centralized approach to manage biodiversity protection work, set up braches and divide up regions and review performance. Meanwhile, a branch will be established within this organ to be responsible for international cooperation of biodiversity matters in order to achieve goals and targets set forth by the CBD action plans. 2.1.1 England Natural England is the agency responsible for implementation of CBD. Natural England works with people, places and nature to enhance biodiversity, landscapes and wildlife in rural, urban, coastal and marine areas by monitor promote access, recreation and public well-being; and contribute to the way natural resources are managed so that they can be sustainable. Natural England coordinates implementation work of government agencies with regard to biodiversity, reviews their performance on implementation. Natural England comprises two organs, the Board and the Executive Board. The Executive Board comprises the Chief Executive and six Executive Directors. The Executive Board provides overall strategic leadership to the organization, in setting plans, reviewing performance and ensuring resources are allocated accordingly. Executive Directors also each have a portfolio of particular responsibilities which includes: The Board is appointed by the Secretary of State and comprises 15 members. All members are appointed on an individual basis and not as representatives of any organizations. All members are experts in relevant fields of biodiversity. Among these 15 members, there are Chair, the Chief Executive, and Deputy Chair. Based on the biodiversity characteristic, the Board divided up the country into 8 regions and designated one member to be in charge of implementation work of one vii


region.     

Delivery of finance and corporate services in implementing CBD Setting implementation strategy and performance standards Operational delivery of Natural England’s business Providing accurate and well evidenced scientific advice and setting scientific standards External affairs and communications including volunteer activities

State Council Regional Agencies

Development

The Environmental Agency

The Board Natural England

Forestry Commission National Park Authorities Commission Comminities

for

The Executive Board

Rural Figure 1. Structure of Natural England

2.1.2 Sweden Within the Swedish Government, the Ministry of the Environment is responsible for coordinating biodiversity issues, including the Convention on Biological Diversity. Swedish Government established a Scientific Council on Biological Diversity comprises 15 members. Its function is to advise the Swedish Government, both with regard to the positions to be adopted by Sweden within the Convention and its Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice and concerning national implementation. Several other government departments, in particular the Ministry of Agriculture, the Ministry of Industry and Commerce and the Ministry for Foreign Affairs, are responsible for implementing the Convention in their respective spheres of activity. Ministry of Agriculture is in charge of agriculture, fishery, genetic resources and biosafety; Ministry of Enterprises, Transportation and Energy is responsible for forestry, Ministry of Justice for protecting traditional knowledge and genetic resources and Ministry of Foreign Affairs for international cooperation. There are also a large number of central government agencies, which are subordinate to the various ministries. In the environmental sphere, the Environmental Protection Agency has the role of coordinating and taking a lead in efforts to promote biodiversity. EPA’s responsibilities to implement the Convention include: 1) to establish and maintain national clearing house mechanism (CHM) according to the viii


Convention; 2) to submit information about national report according to the Convention; 3) to act as the secretary for the Scientific Council on Biological Diversity Other important central government agencies in this context are the Swedish Board of Agriculture, the National Board of Fisheries, the National Board of Forestry, the Swedish Board of Housing, Building and Planning, and the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida). 2.1.3 Belgium Many European countries set up the clearing house mechanism (CHM) to achieve the goal of sharing information under the CBD. CHM is often run by NGOs or government agencies. Some CHMs provide specific information, while others provide comprehensive biodiversity information. Belgium establishes three bodies at different levels as a whole to provide adequate information to obtain this goal set by CBD, which are Clearing House, Biodiversity Platform and Biodiversity Resources. (See illustration 2)

Belgian Clearing-House Mechanism under the Convention on Biological Diversity

Biodiversity Platform

Contain IT module, Data module, Science module and Scientific Policy module Provide biodiversity related information and data Encourage scientists’ cross-fields /cross-disciplinary cooperation; Promote cooperation between decision makers and stockholders; Recommend priority on the issues of biodiversity research; Promote Belgian researches’ importance and contribution to the international forum.

Clearing House

Biodiversity Resources

The text of the Convention on Biological Diversity The implementation of the CBD; cooperation, news and site search Main function: Provide guidance on locating research partners Users can directly search name of the contacted organization, funding source, partnership and the project name.

Major information: Biodiversity resources; Conservation of Biodiversity; Organizations working on conservation of biodiversity (including individual and government agencies); Research projects; Articles and news related to biodiversity

Figure 2 Belgian Clearing-House Mechanism under the Convention on Biological Diversity ix


2.2. Asia India’s experience is quite unique. The Biological Diversity Act in 2002 is the national legislation aiming to implement the Convention on Biological Diversity. The objectives set in this Act are identical with those in CBD, which are 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. However, after carefully reading all the provisions, one could find the main focus of this Act is on how to regulate access to the biological resources and equitable sharing of the benefits. India’s Biological Diversity Act created a new national agency—National Biodiversity Authority to implement CBD. This Act suggests states, local governments and relevant agencies to be responsible for implementation of strategies and action plans and builds a national biodiversity protection network by establishing coordination system among central government agencies. The National Biodiversity Authority is a body directly led by the central government, having perpetual succession, with power to acquire, hold and dispose of property, both movable and immovable, and to contract, and sue and be sued. The head office of the National Biodiversity Authority is at Chennai and the National Biodiversity Authority may, with the previous approval of the Central Government, establish offices at other places in India. The National Biodiversity Authority comprises 15 members. All matters relating to requests for access by foreign individuals, institutions or companies, and all matters relating to transfer of results of research to any foreigner will be dealt with by the National Biodiversity Authority. Its responsibilities include: 1) grant approval for foreign individuals or organizations to obtain biological resource in India or knowledge associated thereto for research or for commercial utilization, and to apply for Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs) arising out of research on biological resources obtaining from India; 2) represent India to challenge IPRs claimed in other countries that arise out of biological resources occurring in India; 3) impose provisions and conditions on equitable sharing of benefits arising out of the utilization of biological resources. National Biodiversity Authority can set up expert commissions to get experts opinion when necessary.

2.3. Africa

South Africa created an inter-governmental cooperation model to implement the CBD. President’s Coordinating Council (PCC) is part of this inter-governmental cooperation model, comprising of the President, the Minister of Provincial and Local Government, and 9 provincial

x


premiers. There are many forums of ministerial, departmental levels set up to promote a coordinating approach to undertake national and provincial projects. (1) Ministerial Forums(MinMECs) MinMECs promote inter-governmental cooperation and their provincial counterparts’ cooperation. MinMECs is political cooperation mechanism, consisting of Minister of State of Environment, Directors and Ministers of provincial government who are responsible for environmental affairs and members from executive council. MinMECs is supported by Technical Forums (MinTEC). (2) The Ministerial Technical Committee (MinTEC) The Ministerial Technical Committee (MINTEC) is a structure set up to facilitate coordination between the national DEAT and provincial environmental departments. MinTEC comprises the Director from State of Environment and representatives from National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI) and National Parks (SANParks. Four working groups under the MinTEC are responsible for matters related biodiversity and heritage, impact management, planning and enforcement. (3) Committee for Environmental Coordination (CEC) As the leading Ministry to protect the environment, Ministry of Environment is responsible for achievement of the purpose and objectives of environmental implementation plans and environmental management plans and promoting the integration and coordination of environmental functions by the relevant organs of state. The CEC comprises the Director-General of DEAT, who acts as chairperson, the directors-general of those national departments that conduct activities affecting the environment, heads of department of the provincial environmental departments. CEC convenes meeting every four months. Its functions are doing investigations and making recommendations on the following issues: 1) coordination of environmental functions; 2) distribution and authorization of environmental functions; 3) review environmental management plans at all levels of government; 4) environmental licenses; 5) general management of environment; 6) principles of environment management and mechanism for compliance; 7) law reform. A few sub-committees have been established under CEC, which includes sub-committees on the biodiversity that is responsible for coherent implementation of CBD and other Conventions. The Chair of this sub-committee is the director of department of biodiversity and heritage

2.4. South America 2.4.1 Costa Rica Because of their richness on biodiversity, countries in South America receive world wide attention on their progress on conservation of biodiversity. Many countries establish specialized bodies to implement CBD to strengthen their national capacity. Costa Rica authorized an Non-governmental organization to be the implementation body received international attention. xi


Even though the national biodiversity authority is a NGO, it has the same functions as other countries’ governmental implementation body. The National Biodiversity Institute (INBio) is CBD implementation body of Costa Rica. INbio was established in 1989 INBio’s organization is structured as follows (See illustration 3): - A political level, composed by the General Assembly and the Board of Directors. - A strategic leadership level, that is conducted by the Directorate composed by an executive director and four thematic directors, whom are supported by three managers (Operations, Human Resources, and Financial-Administrative). - An operating level, made up of the Strategic Action Units (SAU) that are in charge of the execution of technical processes. Currently there are twelve Strategic Action Units, conducted by institutional leaders. Three of these units (INBioparque, Editorial and Bioprospecting) are lead by managers, which have to conduct not only technical but business processes.

Board

Political Level -

Strategic leadership level

Human resources and finance

Government Representatives

Stakeholders - level providing Technical Support Operation

12 Strategic Action Units

Figure 3 Framework of National Biodiversity Institute (INBio) of Costa Rica

INBio works in close collaboration with different government institutions, universities, the private sector and other public and private organizations, both within and outside Costa Rica INBio’s mission is to to promote a greater awareness of the value of biodiversity as a means to ensure its conservation and improve the quality of life of human beings. INBios connects scientific knowledge of biodiversity and economic activities, develops ecotrusism, medicines and agriculture, establishes compensation mechanism for environment services. INBio’s work focuses on the following areas of action:  Inventory and Monitoring: This area generates information on the diversity of species and ecosystems found in the country and nd information on the country’s different ecosystems.  Conservation: This area of work utilizes the existing information in decision-making processes related to the protection and sustainable use of biodiversity. INBio works closely with the National System of Conservation Areas (SINAC).

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 

Communications and education: INBio shares information and knowledge of biodiversity with different segments of the public, with the aim of creating greater awareness of the value of biodiversity. Biodiversity informatics: This area of work develops and applies computer tools to support the processes of generation, administration, analysis and dissemination of information on biodiversity. Genetic resources research and applicable development of those research result. Participate in international cooperation, implement CBD

2.4.1 Brazil Brazilian government set up the National Program for Biodiversity in 1994(PRONABIO)to implement the CBD. In 2002, Brazilian further confirmed that Ministry of Environment (MMA) should coordinate the implementation of the Principles and Directives under the Strategy of Biodiversity though PRONABIO and promote the partnership between government and NGOs. To better implement the CBD, Brazilian government revised the PRONABIO and established National Commission for Biodiversity(CONABIO). CONABIO composed by representatives from the federal government and from non-governmental organizations discussed biodiversity policy. The mission of this Commission is to promote implementation of Brazilian’s commitments under CBD and advice the action plans and priority in research, conservation and sustainable use of the biological resources. In particular, CONABIO undertakes the following obligations:  to coordinate and articulate detail rules on implementation of the National Biodiversity Policy;  to put forward measures for implementation, authorize power in implementing actions and ensure participation from stakeholders;  to provide technical support to public and private organization in implementing projects;  to coordinate plans, projects and activities;  to advice on production or revision of Principles and Directives for implementation;  to promote inter-sector and international cooperation;  to facilitate public consultation on relevant matters;  to follow up and evaluate the impacts and effect of the implementation. CONABIO is responsible for the following matters as well:  to affirm, recommend and promote human resources capacity building, sensibility of institution and the public;  to affirm and recommend the priority and projects on biodiversity research, conservation, sustainable use, effect evaluation, assessment, prevention, mitigation and benefit sharing.

2.5. Lessons Learned From Other Countries’ Experiences in Implementing the CBD Many good practices could be found in the above overview of other countries’ institutional xiii


structure for implementation of CBD, which China can learn. EU countries attaches great importance to the institutional building for CBD implementation. EU Commission on Environment and each government of the Members set up a new body to implement CBD, which generally comprises 2-3 divisions and staff. Meanwhile, EU and its Members regard technical support as very important. Thus, not only is the expert group established to provide technical measures and plans for the implementation, but also great efforts are put to the Biodiversity Clearing House to promote sharing of information. Belgian Information Clearing-House Mechanism is a good model. India also sets a good model for developing countries in institutional building. India promulgated National Biodiversity Act to implement CBD and established National Biodiversity Authority to be responsible for implementing CBD and coordinating conservation of Biodiversity. The National Biodiversity Authority is a body directly led by the central government, having perpetual succession, with power to acquire, hold and dispose of property, both movable and immovable and contract, sue and to be sued. National Biodiversity Authority can set up offices at local level when necessary. Since China’ situation is similar to India, India’s institutional setting for implementation of CBD is the great reference for China. African experience in inter-governmental coordination and integration is good reference. South Africa has a cooperation model for implementation by establishing several inter-governmental bodies to promote coordination among different government departments and sectors. These include President’s Coordinating Council (PCC), comprising of the President, the Minister of Provincial and Local Government, and 9 provincial premiers, Ministries forums, Committee for Environmental Coordination and the Ministerial Technical Committee. The nature of Costa Rica’s implementation authority is unique, which is a NGO, National Biodiversity Institute. INBio is a non-for-profit organization, having the same functions as other countries’ implementation authorities. INBio works in close collaboration with different government institutions (Environment, Agriculture and Foresty), universities, the private sector and other public and private organizations to collect and manage biodiversity information, coordinate the implementation of CBD. Brazil established National Biodiversity Commission (CONABIO) to promote partnership between governments and NGOs. CONABIO comprises representative from both governments and NGOs to ensure NGOs’ participation in decision making related to biodiversity. (As the information access is very difficult, we have no capacity to compare with all kinds of institutional arrangement for different countries. We may propose another project to investigate and analyze deeply the experience on institutional arrangement in other countries. Actually, it is better to organize some study tours to visit the selected countries.)

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3. Current Status of Institutional International Conventions

Capacity

to

Implement

Relevant

There are other International Conventions closely related to the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity besides Convention on Biological Diversity. The implementation institutions of these international conventions are set up in other national departments. We need to study the structure, arrangement, actual capacity and operation of these institutions so that they can be the reference for institution reform for implementation of CBD.

3.1 The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora The Secretary of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) was established in the Office for Administration of Imports and Exports of Endangered Species of State Forestry Administration. The Office is staffed by 130 personnel and 30 of them work at the central level, 100 at the local offices. The Office implements CITES by issuing three types of licenses: License for Endangered Species covered by CITES, License for non-CITES Endangered Species and License for Species. The most valuable lesson learned from the implementation of CITES in China is the complete setting for the implementation body, which has institution at the central level and local offices so that the implementation work can be carried forward consistently and efficiently. Actually, CITES implementation is largely involved in reviewing and approving applications for animal trade and a lot staff is needed to deal with the increasing business. The implementation body for CITES in China is also at a quite high level. The Director of Office for Administration of Imports and Exports of Endangered Species is deputy director general for the State Forestry Administration, who is a deputy-minister level official. The Office has one executive director (department level official), three deputy directors (vice department level official). The Office has six divisions, which are management office, general division, division for Administration of Imports and Exports of Endangered Species, division for CITES affairs and division for training and enforcement. 17 local offices directly under the Central Office were set up, covering most of the regions and port cities where trade in endangered species can be monitored, which are Beijing, Shanghai, Tianjin, Haerbing, Shenyang, Huhhot, Urumchi, Lhasa, Jinan, Shijiazhuang, Chengdu, Kunming, Hangzhou, Fuzhou, Nanjing, Guangzhou and Haikou.

3.2 UN Convention to Combat Desertification

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The important lesson learned from the implementation of Convention to Combat Desertification (CCD) is that coordination body of central and local level should be set up so that the nation-wide desertification-combating work can be effectively coordinated. At the national level, Coordinating Group of Combating Desertification, i.e. the Executive Commission of CCD, was established, led by the State Forestry Administration, composed of 19 Ministries of State Council, including Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA), National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST), Ministry of Finance (MOF), Ministry of Agriculture (MOA), Ministry of Civil Affairs (MOCA), State Forestry Administration (SFA), Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), Ministry of Land and Resources (MOLR) and Ministry of Water Resources (MOWR), Ministry of Communication (MOC), Ministry of Railway (MOR), People’s Bank of China, State Tax Administration (STA), Office of Poverty Alleviation and Office of Agricultural Development. Usually the Coordinating Group has meeting once annually and it is also can have irregular meeting. Office of Coordinating Group for Combating Desertification, whose another name is the Secretary of Executive of CCD, was established to be responsible for daily operation work. Senior expert consulting group consisting of senior scientists and experts from different disciplines and institutions, was also formed to provide technical support to the Coordinating Group. China Combating Desertification Administration Center was established under the State Forestry Administration upon the approval of the Office of Central Organization Commission. This Administration Center is at the department level, having five divisions, staffed by 20 personnel. One division is responsible for affairs related to implementation of CCD and the other four divisions are in charge of coordination of national desertification combating work. One experience worth noting is that provinces (municipalities and autonomic regions), where the desertification is severe, also establish Coordinating Group to coordinate inter-governmental desertification combating work. A specialized system providing technical support is set up, which includes China National Research and Development Center of Combating Desertification, China National Training Center of Combating Desertification, China National Desertification Monitoring Center, etc. They are all in national level.

3.3 The Ramsar Convention on Wetlands

Secretary of implementing the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands was in the State Forestry Administration. Wetlands Conservation Center was established within the SFA upon the approval from the Office of Central Organization Commission. Wetlands Conservation Center also acts as the implementing office of the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands. National Wetland Conservation Law is under drafting. With the improvement of the laws and regulations and the institutional arrangement, wetlands conservation work will be brought to a new stage. Wetland ecosystem is the important part of biodiversity. The Ramsar Convention on Wetlands xvi


is a very important part of the conservation of biodiversity, CBD’s important supplement. CBD could be regarded as the umbrella convention and Wetland Convention is one of the important branches under this cover. Setting up one Center to provide two functions, including coordination of national work on wetland conservation domestically and acting as a focal point for the Convention is a good lesson we should learn.

3.4 United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change

Implementation of UN Framework Convention on Climate Changes (UNFCCC) is led by National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), with MOFA, MOST, SEPA and State Meteorological Administration (SMA)’s participation. Because climate change became a political issue, it received great attention. A Leading Group on Responding Climate Change was established, chaired by Premier Wen Jiabao, composed of ministers from more than ten ministries and administrations, including NDRC, MOFA, SMA, MOST, SEPA. Meanwhile, the office of the Leading Group on Responding Climate Change was set up and staffed by 20 personnel, in which Mr. Ma Kai is the director and Mr. Xie Zhenhua acts as the deputy director. This office is the ministry level organization. Its main function is to coordinate intergovernmental work on climate change and seek support from senior officials. Moreover, the office climate change under NDRC, as a departmental level organization, still exists to be responsible for the daily administration work under the Leading Group’s leadership.

3.5 Summary of the Lessons from Institution Arrangement and Coordinating Mechanism for Implementing Relevant International Conventions

In comparison with CBD implementation, the Institution Arrangements for the above mentioned four relevant international conventions have their own features, and are more appropriate, more effective. For example, the Office of implementing CITES and the Office of implementing Wetland Convention both have official stamps with national emblem to implement the Conventions that involve foreign matters. Empowering the implementation body for the Wetland Convention to operate under two official names is very practical experience. When dealing with foreign affairs, it works under the name of office of implementing Wetland Convention; while managing national wetland conservation work, it operates under the name of National Wetland Conservation Center. It is also a good practice to set up a high level Coordinating Group led by Premier with ministers’ participation done by UNFCC implementation. It is needed for CBD Implementation Office to enhance communication with other convention implementation bodies and learn the experience in institutional capacity building from them,

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Table 1 Comparison of Institutions for Implementation of Relevant International Conventions Convention

Form of

Level

Staff

Coordinati

Technical

Implementing

on

Support

Institution

Mechanis m

CITES

CDD

Independent Organization One Official Name Having Official Stamp with national emblem Independent Organization

Department

130 personnel 23 divisions

Coordinati ng A Few Department s

20 personnel, 5 divisions

Coordinati ng Group composed of 19 department s Under developme nt

level

Department level

Wetland Convention

UNFCC

CBD

Independent Organization Two Official Names One Official Stamp with national emblem Office of Central Leading Group for Climate Change and NDRC office of Climate Change (Work together) Office of Biodiversity Conservation is not independent organization Implementation body is in the office. No official Name

Department

15 personnel, 3 divisions

level

Ministry level Department

20 personnel, a few departments

Led by Premier A few ministries join

2 personnel, 12 人 , 1 division

24 部门协 调机构

level Office is at department level, implementation body is at division level

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Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes


4. Assessment of Current Status and Obstacles of Institutional Capacity for Implementation of the CBD 4.1 Current Status of Institutional Capacity for Implementation 4.1.1 Coordinating mechanism for implementation is in place and steadily developed In the beginning of 1993, the State Council ratified to establish the Steering Committee for China’s implementation of the CBD and coordinating conservation and management of domestic biological diversity. The Steering Committee is led by SEPA, and composed of following 13 authorities: Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA), State Development and Reform Commission (SDRC), Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST), Ministry of Science and Technology (MST), Ministry of Finance (MOF), Ministry of Agriculture (MOA), Ministry of Construction (MOC), State Forestry Administration (SFA), State Oceanic Administration (SOA), State Intellectual Property Office (SIPO), General Administration of Customs, State Administration of Traditional Chinese Medicine (SATCM), Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS). Office of the CBD Steering Committee was established within SEPA and responsible for daily operations. Due to the fact that aspects of biodiversity are increasing, the State Council decided to enlarge CBD Steering Committee to 20 members. Seven new members are Ministry of Education (MOE), Ministry of Public Security (MOPS), State Administration of Industry and Commerce (SAIC), State Administration of Radio, Film and Television (SARFT), Xinhua News Agency, People’s Daily, Guangming Daily. In 2004, Ministry of Commerce (MOC) and General Administration of Quality Supervision,Inspection and Quarantine (AQSIQ) joined the committee and in 2007 Ministry of Land Resources (MOLR) and Ministry of Water Resources (MOWR) became new members. The number of the member to the CBD Steering Committee reached to 24. The CBD Steering Committee is led by Vice Minister and composed of 22 members who are directors from corresponding departments of 22 Ministries and Administrations. Directors from relevant divisions from those member departments form a liaison network under the Steering Committee. Office of Implementing CBD responsible for daily operation work of Steering Committee was established under the Department of Nature and Ecology Conservation of SEPA. It has been fourteen years that CBD Steering Committee plays an important role in directing Chinese delegate to participate in international negotiations and coordinating national efforts on biodiversity conservation. The CBD Steering Committee convenes one meeting every year to discuss the national strategy for CBD negotiation and make decisions for execution of some national and international projects on biodiversity. The operation of liaison network is more flexible. Meetings can be convened when necessary under specific themes and can be more than one meeting every year for some concrete issues.. 4.1.2 Organizing Participation in CBD Negotiation and other International Activities The Office of CBD Steering Committee organized its member units to participate in relevant international events more than 50 times in the past 15 years, including CBD negotiations, meetings of ad hoc working groups and inter-government committees, Conferences of Parties to the Convention, and the negotiation of Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety and the relevant activities xix


after the Protocol took effect. 4.1.3 Organizing Implementation of Key Projects At the national level, the Office of CBD Steering Committee has implemented a number of key projects in order to fulfill China’s obligation under CBD and Biosafety Protocol. The Office of CBD Steering Committee organized its members to compile an action plan of biodiversity conservation in China, which was promulgated by the State Council in 1994. From 1996 to 1998, the Office of CBD Steering Committee organized its members to complete a Research Report on the Situation of China’s Biological Diversity. Later, the Office of the CBD Steering Committee, together with the members, successfully completed UNEP/GEF funded projects, which are Biodiversity Data Management and Internet Capacity Building Project, National Biosafety Framework Project, Demonstration Project on Implementing National Biosafety Framework, Capacity Building on Biosafety Clearing House Mechanism, etc. The Office of the CBD Steering Committee completed the first national implementation report in 1998, and the second in 2002 and the third in 2006. In recent years, the Office of CBD Steering Committee has implemented UNDP/GEF Program on Assessment of Capacity to Implement CBD, made National Planning on Utilization of Biological Species Resources and National Strategy on Intellectual Property Rights on Biological Resources, organized inspection on enforcement of national biological resources regulations and implemented key projects on investigation of key species resources.

4.2 Obstacles of Implementation Capacity 4.2.1. Limited Ability to Make Decisions and Lead the Implementation In the Notice by State Council approving the establishment of the CBD Steering Committee, details of the tasks and functions it shall undertake were not articulated, nor the functions, role and responsibilities. In reality, CBD Steering Committee has not become the most authoritative and effective institution to lead China’s efforts on biodiversity conservation. It has only played a small role in dealing with challenges and seizing opportunities for biodiversity conservation. The Steering Committee became a consultative body to coordinate members’ opinions and efforts. It usually advises solutions or puts forward requirements to address specific problems. Therefore, its function of leading comprehensive implementation of CBD has not been played out. The main reason is that the Committee is not so powerful that the member ministries have not undertake their responsibilities. 4.2.2. Members of the CBD Steering Committee Play Inactive Role Even though CBD Steering Committee enlarged to have 24 members in the past ten years, but its capacity for coordinating implementation remains weak. Due to comparative low level of coordination as the Steering Committee is led by the Director from department level and lack of evaluation mechanism, some of the member units pay little attention to the implementation. They don’t even know what they should do in terms of implementing CBD. On the other hand, SEPA established Inter-Ministerial Joint Meeting System on Conservation of Species Resources, in which members are minister level officials. Since its level is higher than the CBD Steering xx


Committee and some of their functions are overlapping, the importance of the Steering Committee has been neglected. 4.2.3 Lack of Human Resources for the Office of CBD Steering Committee Staffed by four officials, the Office of the CBD Steering Committee under the Department of Nature and Ecology Conservation, which is the Biosafety Management Office and the Secretary of Ministries Joint Meeting System on Conservation of Species Resources. These four officials have to manage a number of important programs and they are busy attending CBD meetings as well, which compounds their workload. Like the CBD Steering Committee, the Office’s functions and responsibilities are unclear. The Office plays too many roles and lacks human resources. These are the obstacles to effectively implement CBD.

5. Needs and schemes for strengthening institutional capacity building under the new circumstances

Based on current needs for institutional capacity building and social and economic guarantee, schemes for strengthening institutional capacity building to implement the CBD are proposed with consideration of the international circumstances, characteristics as well as the domestic enforcement of laws and regulations for sustainable development and environmental protection.

5.1. Challenges and Opportunities 5.1.1 Challenging objectives and heavy tasks to implement the Convention It has been fourteen years since the CBD came into effect from the end of 1993. The tasks of implementing CBD became more and more specific, covering all ranges of issues related to biodiversity, from species resources to genetic resources, from terrestrial biodiversity to marine biodiversity, from forest ecosystem to pasture and polar ecosystem, from nature reserve to agricultural biodiversity, from bio-safety of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) to prevention of alien invasive species, from technology transfer to protection of traditional knowledge. Eight Conferences of the Parties have been convened to discuss almost every issue included in the CBD. The tasks to implement the CBD remain huge for a long time to come. For example, the 8th Conference of the Parties to the CBD held in Brazil in 2006 had in-depth discussions on a wide range of topics, in particular on island biodiversity, biodiversity of dry and sub-humid lands, recommendation of classification of global biodiversity; access and benefit sharing of genetic resources, protection of traditional knowledge, communication, education and public awareness. More than thirty issues have been discussed, including marine biodiversity, agricultural biodiversity, protected areas, incentive measures, liabilities and redress, biodiversity and climate change, etc, and thirty-six decisions have been passed to stipulate implementation tasks for Parties to the CBD. xxi


In addition, 2010 biodiversity target set forth by the 6th Conference of the Parties to the CBD requires the Parties to step up efforts to achieve by 2010 a significant reduction of the current rate of biodiversity loss at the global, regional and national level. This target was subsequently endorsed by the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development. There are measurable indicators to assess progress at the global level towards 2010 target, which require all countries, including China tremendous efforts considering the wide-spread threat to global biodiversity Therefore, there is still a long way to go to implement the international conventions.

5.1.2 In face of the huge tasks to implement the CBD, the leading agency takes great responsibility. China was one of the earliest Parties to the CBD and has been actively participating in the CBD- related actives, making significant progress in protecting biodiversity and its sustainable use. The numbers and sizes of nature reserves in particular have exceeded the average international standard, which protect domestic biodiversity to some degree and make great contribution to the global biodiversity. However, as China now is under rapid development, great conflicts keep arising in areas of exploitation of resources, economic and social development and protection of bio-diversity. Being a mega-biodiversity country, China faces great challenge in implementing the CBD. However, any successful implementation can have far-reaching international influence. However, the implementation activities in China are more complicated and challenging than most other countries. As a matter of fact, China has been left behind in biodiversity conservation compared with other mega-biodiversity countries like Brazil and India. In face of this great challenge to implement the CBD, China needs to make it a strategic priority. Some major measures must be taken to implement the CBD comprehensively to protect biodiversity and present a responsible image for China as a powerful and important country. It is necessary to establish a powerful coordination body. As the leading body for implementation of the CBD, the SEPA must be better and more active to take up its responsibilities. 5.1.3 The implementation efforts result in experience, lessons and new opportunities The implementation efforts are far from satisfactory, nevertheless, the SEPA has accumulated much experience and some lessons, in particular in the aspects of inter-ministerial coordination and program development, which are of great value for furthering the implementation work. In the meanwhile, the current international and domestic situations also give rise to new development opportunities as below for SEPA, which are of great values to strengthen the SEPA’s leading position. 1) Strengthening conservation and management of species resources and genetic resources. Species resources and genetic resources are potentially crucial for the development of the national economy, which has brought much attention from the far-sighted Party and national

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leaders. Led by SEPA , the inter-ministerial joint meeting system for biodiversity conservation was established in 2003 upon the approval of the State Council. It comprises 17 relevant ministries and administrations. Notice on Strengthening Conservation and Management of Species Resources was promulgated by the State Council in spring of 2004, putting forward 15 major measures which directly support the efforts to implement the CBD in China and consolidate SEPA’s leading position in implementation work. Since the core of the CBD is the conservation and sharing of species resources and genetic resources, the implementation office of the SEPA is facing a great challenge and opportunity in enforcing the Notice from the State Council. This new mechanism of inter-ministerial joint meeting system will have a supporting role to CBD Steering Committee, rather than a marginalization of CBD Steering Committee. Recently, National Planning Guidelines on Utilization of Biological Species Resources has won approval from the State Council to be part of the Plan for the National Economic and Social Development, putting forward 10 priority actions in 12 different fields to strengthen conservation and utilization of species resources and genetic resources and affirming 55 priority programs for the following 5 years. The implementation of these great plans will bring new opportunities for the implementation office of the CBD within the SEPA. Together with other ministries, SEPA will also lead execution of the Planning Guidelines in the next years. 2) Entering the Bio-safety Protocol China entered Biosafety Protocol on 27th April, 2005 upon the approval of the State Council and became a Party to the Protocol on 6th September, 2005. The Protocol, a legal instrument under the CBD to deal with trans-boundary transporting of the genetically modified species, is the significant result of the first-stage implementation of the CBD. The 3rd meeting of the Parties to the Protocol was held in Brazil in March, 2006, which stipulated a series of implementation tasks for its Parties. As a major country to produce and import GMOs, China’s entry into the Protocol has a global impact. The SEPA will play a significant role in the nation-wide safety management of the GMOs. Affirmed by the State Council’ Three Setting Scheme (seting institutional structure, personnel and functions for each ministry by the State Council, 国务院“三定”方案), the SEPA is in charge of the safety management of biological technology. Way back in 2000, the Office of the Central Organization Committee approved of the establishment of the Office of National Bio-safety within the SEPA to be in charge of the environmental safety of biological technology in China. However, the State Council promulgated Agricultural Genetically Modified Organisms Safety Regulations in May, 2001 which stipulate that the Ministry of Agriculture is in charge of the safety management of GMOs. The only responsibility of the SEPA is to attend the inter-ministerial joint meetings arranged by the Ministry of Agriculture. Only two or three joint meetings have been convened since the establishment of the Regulations five years ago, hence, the SEPA has hardly made any achievement in the aspect of safety management of GMOs. China’s entry into the Bio-safety Protocol will provide an opportunity for the SEPA to fully perform the State Council’s Three Setting Scheme functions. As a liaison unit and the leading authority of the Biosafety Protocol in China, the SEPA should utilize the opportunity to make some achievement in the field of biological safety management, strategically leading the work of biological safety management in China.

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3) Coordinating implementation of relevant international conventions to strengthen the inter-ministerial coordination and co-operation.

The extensive content of the CBD is related to quite a few other international conventions. For example, biodiversity is closely related to the climate change, which means the implementation of the CBD and the implementation of the United Nations Climate Change Framework Convention have to be coordinated to achieve better effect. In the aspect of access and benefit sharing of genetic resources and traditional knowledge, the CBD is closely linked with international conventions including Trade-related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights under the WTO (TRIPS), World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), The Food and Agriculture International Plant Genetic Resources Treaty under the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United nations and the International Union for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants. Besides, conservation of biodiversity is also closely connected with the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, United Nation Convention to Combat Desertification and the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands, etc. The leading implementation bodies of the above-mentioned conventions are State Development and Reform Committee, Ministry of Commerce, Ministry of Agriculture, State Forestry Administration and State Intellectual Property Rights Office, etc. The effect-enhancing coordinating implementation of relevant conventions will lead to the overlapping of the work of all leading implementation bodies at the national level and promote the cooperation between relevant leading implementation bodies within the country. Take the State Intellectual Property Rights Strategy for example, the State Intellectual Property Rights Office took the leading responsibility and over 30 ministries and administrations participated in its formulation. Since the SEPA was responsible for conservation of biological genetic resources, it took on the research on the Strategic Issues of Intellectual Property Rights of Biological Resources. As a result, inter-ministerial communication is strengthened and better cooperation is achieved, which will provide new opportunities for better coordination and co-operation in implementing the CBD.

5.2 Existing problems 5.2.1 Imbalance between heavy implementation tasks and lack of human resources 1) Busy attendance to various international conferences and lack of ability to implement the conference results The Conference of the Parties to the CBD is convened every two years while the Conference of Parties to Safety Protocol is held once a year in the past three years and will be held once in two years in the future. In order to prepare for the Conference of Parties, there will also be at least one SBSTTA every year to discuss various issues. Five to ten ad hoc negotiation meetings will be convened annually by the operation groups to discuss major issues. In addition, some seminars will be held annually by international inter-governmental organizations, NGOs and some national governments concerned.

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Attendance to the international conferences requires a great deal of time to read big volumes of conference documents and discuss conference resolutions. With its wide range of content, the Conference of Parties in particular expects months for preparation work beforehand and digestion afterwards. However, with so many conferences to attend and so serious shortage of human resources in implementation offices, we fail to present to the Secretary of the Convention with feedback after attending most of the conferences, nor can we carry out in-depth study on corresponding resolutions, which consequently leads to a very passive image at the international conferences instead of the image of a responsible big country More importantly, the short-staffed implementation office is unable to put into effect the spirits of the international conferences and their resolutions. As a Party, China is obliged to carry out the resolutions and practice the common understanding from the COPs and other meetings. Currently, however, attendance to most conferences only end up with a meeting minute with no further action. It is difficult to hold a meeting for coordination groups after each COP, not to mention to implement the convention resolutions comprehensively. 2lack of human resources and unsatisfactory implementation of relevant programs. The implementation of international conventions is manifested in the completion of programs, which can serve as an important link to coordinate relevant bodies. The implementation office has assumed responsibilities for quite a few international and national implementation programs in the recent years. For example, the four-year UNEP/GEF-funded Demonstration Project on Implementing National Bio-safety Framework with $ 1 million investment. With the extensive tasks, Research Program on Key Biological Species Resources is a major program supported by the Ministry of Finance with 80 million yuan (RMB) investment in five years, involving more than 20 research institutions from 8 ministries and administrations and many scientific fields. Hence, it is very challenging to organize coordination work. National Strategy and Action Plans for Biodiversity is being updated and compiled by over 50 experts recommended by more than 10 sectors from over 40 scientific research units. Under the usual circumstances, it is necessary to establish a program office with at least three officials to manage a program of such a scale. In reality, however, all the management work has fallen under the responsibilities of the implementation office. These few programs are far from sufficient for the implementation work at the national level. To implement conventions comprehensively, more key national programs need to be developed, more units should be activated to carry out bigger actions with more force. The current human resources are still too insufficient to organize more and bigger programs. There still lie some difficulties in achieving high-quality arrangement and completion of the limited programs as the limited capacity of the CBD Office. 5.2.2 Imbalance between the difficulty level of coordination work and the current organization arrangement Biodiversity conservation and biosafety management are concerned with over 20 sectors from different fields. At present there are two mechanisms. One is the National Implementation Coordination Groups established in 1993, which has expanded to 24 sectors; the other is the Inter-ministerial Joint Meeting System for conservation and management of the National Biological Resources, which comprises 17 sectors. Members of the joint meeting system are

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leaders from various sectors. The Biosafety Protocol implementation coordination mechanism under development will also comprise over 10 relevant sectors. With the participation of so many different sectors, it is essential for the leading implementation authority to have powerful coordination capacity. The current coordination work is mainly implemented by the implementation office. Known as a department-level institution, it is in reality an institution at the division-level. Current staff still have no administrative staffing quota, which is not in line with the implementation functions, tasks and the current organization system and falls short of the expectation of a powerful coordination authority for the CBD Steering Committee. As a result, the coordination work meets with great challenge as a secretariat to do coordination work for CBD Steering Committee.. In view of the present situation, there are still a lot of problems in the operation of the above-mentioned two mechanisms (it will be 3 mechanisms, if including the biosafety coordination mechanism under development). The organizational setting and lack of human resources lead to poor efficiency. With SEPA’s passive operation of the coordination work and lack of strategic planning and action plans, it still has a long way to go to actively utilize the two mechanisms 5.2.3 No legal support for the implementation functions and coordination work for lack of relevant regulations

A few national laws and regulations have been promulgated for biodiversity conservation and management. However, there is hardly any law or regulation concerning the coordination work for the SEPA to implement conventions. The implementation work lacks legal support without the statutory organizational functions. On the other hand, both the CBD and Bio-safety Protocol put forward new issues and new areas, which happen to be uncovered or insufficiently dealt with in national legislation. In order to be in compliance with the international conventions, a sound national legislation system has to be established accordingly. However, it takes a long time to establish new regulations. On the one hand, the new regulations deal with too many sectors , making it difficult to coordinate their respective benefits. On the other hand, the establishment of new regulations requires both the initiatives and strength of the organizations. Otherwise, the loss of opportunities is inevitable. For example, the State Council approved of the formulation of the Safety Regulations for Genetically Modified Organisms led by SEPA in 2001. Unfortunately, the implementation office failed to seize the opportunity for lack of abilities. In regard with the unsound legislation system and lack of statutory functions, the implementation office is bound to meet with great challenge in making comprehensive implementation action plans at the national level.

5.3 Strengthening the schemes for institutional capacity building 5.3.1 Strengthening the capacity and functions of the coordination body. xxvi


1)China’s Steering Committee of the CBD comprises the following members: SEPA, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, State Development and Reform Commission, Ministry of Science and Technology, Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Agriculture, Ministry of Construction , State Forestry Administration, State Marine Administration, SIPO, General Administration of Customs, State Administration of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Ministry of Education, Ministry of Public Security, State Administration of Radio, Film and Television, General Administration of Trade and Commerce, Xinhua News Agency, People’s Daily, Ministry of Construction, Ministry of Commerce, General Administration of Quality Supervision, Ministry of Land Resources and Ministry of Water Resources, totally 24 sectors. First of all, the coordination mechanism needs to be enhanced for its composition, the current members of the group to be assessed and adjusted and new members to be added if necessary. At present, the Ministry of Health, State Council Poverty Alleviation Office, and State Ethnic Affairs Commission are under consideration to be adopted as new members. Secondly, changing the name of Steering Committee for China’s implementation of the CBD to the Executive Board to implement the CBD comprehensively, transforming the current consulting and coordinating mechanism to the real leading authority in the aspect of conservation and management of biodiversity. nationwide, by increasing its authority and responsibilkity. Thirdly, merging the current inter-ministerial joint meeting system for conservation of biological resources with the coordination mechanism to form a high-level joint coordinating mechanism. There will be subsequently two official names with the same staff. In the international sphere it is known as the Executive Board for the implementation of the CBD in China,while domestically it is the inter-ministerial joint meeting system for biodiversity conservation whose members include all the sectors from the former two mechanisms and their representatives become directors at the deputy-ministerial level. Fourthly, Establishing inter-ministerial joint meeting working policy, further affirming its functions and members’ responsibilities (TORs). Strengthening and perfecting the institutional building and capacity foundation of the executive board. 2)Functions of the coordination mechanism. The responsibilities of the coordination mechanism are to be made clearer, domestically concerning the strategic planning for conservation of national biodiversity and its enforcement, internationally concerning the participation in negotiations and decisions of the Conventions as well as implementation of strategies, policies and actions set forth by the CBD. Its specific responsibilities include the following:  To formulate national strategies for biodiversity conservation and relevant policies.  To coordinate and decide major actions for national biodiversity conservation.  To guide and propel the formulation and implementation of National Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan.  To coordinate relevant biodiversity planning and implementation efforts of various sectors and local governments.by the State Council. xxvii


 To make Executive Board’s annual work plans for inter-ministerial joint meetings and review the implementation effect.  To coordinate all members of the executive board to meet the requirement set forth by the CBD report.  To monitor the development of the CBD implementation work.  Approve annual state of biodiversity reports, based on 2010 targets and indicators? 5.3.2 Establishing a consulting and cooperation committee for biodiversity conservation The committee will consist of a wide range of stakeholders, mainly providing consulting service for government’s decision-making, dealing with some government policies, decisions and actions by means of direct contact and discussions. Its main members and their respective functions are: 1)Scientific consulting specialists The following are invited to participate in the consulting work for the board: well-known scientists and technical specialists from biodiversity-related fields including some lawyers and socio-economic scientists. They will form a scientific consulting team to provide consulting service on decision-making matters of the executive board. The Scientific Consulting Team is a technically subsidiary body for the Executive Board, but team member is not member of the Board. 2) Nongovernmental environmental protection (especially focusing on biodiversity) organizations and foundations The following are invited to participate in the work of the board: representatives from international NGOs and foundations as well as famous environmental protection organizations and institutions within the country. They can also deal with negotiations on relevant issues and provide consultancy and proposals for government decision-making. A detailed TOR may be needed for description of their participation. 3)Multi-lateral and bi-lateral inter-governmental cooperation organizations. The following are invited to participate in the consulting and discussions of the board: International organizations interested in biodiversity conservation in China or those having undertaken cooperation with China in biodiversity field, inter-governmental organizations, bi-lateral governmental organizations or embassy representatives. A TOR is needed for their participation 4)The media and the public The following are invited to participate in the work of the board by providing proposals for government’s decision making: some media representatives, interested journalists or those concerned about biodiversity conservation, the public, grassroot community representatives. A TOR is need for their participation.

5.3.3 Strengthening the Institutional Capacity Building for the Office of the Executive Board

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1)Tentative plan for the organizational mode Currently, the organizational mode of SEPA in the biodiversity field is ‘two official names with the same staff’. One of the official names is State Nature and Ecology Conservation Administration, the other Biodiversity Conservation Office approved by Office of the Central Organization Commission. They are currently merged into one organization with one staffing system, which makes the Office of Biodiversity Conservation virtually nonexistent. The implementation office of Biodiversity Conservation must be made independent of the Nature and Ecology Conservation Administration and become an administrative unit with independent functions both in the domestic and international spheres. The Office will have two official names: One is the SEPA Office for Biodiversity Conservation and Management. Its main functions include: coordinating the policy-making and management for domestic biodiversity conservation and sustainable use, guiding the local governments in the work concerning biodiversity as the supervising and coordinating body. The other is the PRC Implementation Office of the CBD. Its main functions lie in the international sphere. It serves as the Chinese Government’s administrative authority for the implementation of the CBD in China, participating in CBD-related negotiations and international activities, coordinating international implementation actions and carrying out international co-operations.

The functions of the new biodiversity conservation office will include those of the Office of the former Steering Committee (Division of Species or Division of Biodiversity) and Bio-safety Office. 2)Analysis on current similar organizations This system is identical with implementation bodies of the three conventions led by the State Forestry Administration, whose original administrative unit was the Conservation Administration. Both the import and export administration of endangered species and wetlands conservation fell under its administrative functions. With the development in the implementation work of the international conventions, an independent Administration Office for the import and export of Endangered Species was established, which has expanded to 23 divisions with 130 personnel. The same can be applied to wetlands conservation. Originally it fell under the management of the Conservation Administration. With the increasing awareness of the importance of wetlands conservation and to meet the implementation requirements of the Convention on Wetland Conservation, the SFA Administration Center for Wetland Conservation was established and took the official name of Wetlands Conservation Implementation Office of the People’s Republic of China upon the approval of the Office of Central Organization Commission . On the one hand, the center is in charge of wetlands conservation and management as well as the development of programs for conservation and sustainable use of wetland; On the other hand, it serves as the implementation office taking a leading position in the implementation of the Wetlands Convention. At present, the Center has three divisions with 15 personnel. xxix


Another similar case is the implementation mechanism for the United Nations Conventions to Combat Desertification. Originally, the Secretary of the State Forestry Administration Afforestation was responsible for the work to combat desertification. To meet the needs arising from the implementation of United Nations Convention on Combating Desertification, an independent departmental-level administration center for combating desertification in China was established, which has 5 divisions and 20 personnel. The center takes the leading role in implementing the United Nations Convention on Combating Desertification in China and takes the responsibilities to administer and guide the efforts to combat desertification in China. 3)Plan for Corresponding responsibilities and functions. The administrative position of the implementation office should be improved for its more power, in order to enhance the capacity to coordinate all members of the Executive Board (i.e. inter-ministerial joint meeting system, IMJMS). As a relatively independent unit for the Executive Board (or IMJMS) the implementation office can be established within SEPA. As an executive office of the Executive Board (or IMJMS), it should perform all the coordinating tasks set forth by the Executive Board (or IMJMS),, taking responsibility to implement the CBD and protect biodiversity in China.

The responsibilities of the implementation office include the following:  To coordinate relevant bodies for implementation work according to the objectives and tasks set forth by the executive board  To take the responsibility of programming, planning and monitoring for national biodiversity conservation as well as formulation of schemes and their implementation.  To promote effective communication and Clearing-house Mechanism between members of the steering committee and the local coordination groups.  To establish and maintain the communication and correspondence with the Secretary of the Convention and expand the information channels.  To organize sectors concerned to attend the CBD-related negations and international implementation activities.  To complete and submit national report on the implementation of the Convention as required;  To supervise, monitor and assess the implementation work of the CBD.

4)Key issues and needs According to the requirements to implement Biosafety Protocol under the CBD, National Biosafety Management Office was first established in 2001 and the Biodiversity Conservation Office (BCO) (this is a departmental level institution, CBD implementation office is under BCO) was subsequently established in 2005 with the approval of the Office of Central Governmental Institution-design Commission. Both organizations have helped promote the implementation work. However, the crucial problem of staffing organization remains to be solved. When the two organizations were established, the Office of Central Governmental Institution-design Commission only required adjustment within the SEPA concerning their staffing organization or xxx


using two official names with the same staff on the basis of the current Department of Ecology and Nature Conservation under SEPA. However, Department of Ecology and Nature Conservation has many other responsibilities in the aspect of national ecology and nature conservation such as rural environmental protection, ecological environmental protection, soil pollution control and protected areas management, leaving no possibility to organize staffing for the implementation of the Convention. Therefore, in order to address the issue of institutional capacity building to implement the CBD, not only is an official name but also adequate personnel are needed for the organizational setting. 5)Proposed inner organizational setting Five division-level organizations are proposed to set up under the Office of Biodiversity conservation, with a total personnel of 20, one director, two deputy directors and 17 members. The specific organizations and corresponding staffing arrangements as well as the proposed responsibilities are:

International Liaison Division

As the national focal point for the CBD and the Bio-safety Protocol, the International Liaison Division’s main responsibilities are as follows: as the national focal point, the liaison work with the Secretary of the CBD and the Secretary of the Biosafety Protocol in Montreal, Canada; organization of negotiations and conferences related to the CBD and Biosafety Protocol for relevant sectors and representatives; arranging the formulation of national implementation reports and relevant documents and submit them to the Secretary of the CBD; Coordinating and dealing with international activities related to biodiversity conservation and bio-safety management The division will be staffed by 3 personnel, one director and two members. 

Division of Biodiversity (more species level) Administration

As a coordinating unit and a division with direct implementation function, its main responsibilities are as follows: To be responsible for conservation and management of species resources and genetic resources; To be responsible for the organization, coordination and operation of the inter-ministerial joint meeting system for conservation of species resources; To implement National Planning Guidelines on Utilization of Biological Species Resources and National Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan; To carry out research on key species resources; To take charge of matters related to the access and benefit sharing of genetic resources and associated traditional knowledge. The division will be staffed by 5 personnel, one director, one deputy director and three members. xxxi


Division of Bio-safety Management Its main responsibilities are as follows:

To be responsible for the implementation of relevant provisions of the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety; To organize, coordinate and operate the steering mechanism for the implementation of the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety; To organize the formulation of administration regulations, standards and technological criteria concerning biosafety of GMOs; To organize the work of risk assessment, risk management of GMOs and relevant supervising and administration work. To organize administrative work on the prevention of alien invasive species and harmful species. To develop environmental administration work on pathogenic microorganisms. The division will be staffed by 3, i.e. 1 director and 2 members. 

Division of Communication and Information Management Its main responsibilities are as follows:

To establish and maintain the CHM for biodiversity and the Biosafety Clearing-house (BCH) Mechanism for bio-safety, to update the data, and to liaise with the Convention Secretary’s CHM and BCH as the National Focal Point for CHM and BCH. To establish, maintain and update data on various kinds of species and nature reserves; To carry out multi-lateral, bi-lateral international information exchange and co-operation; To be responsible for the publicity, educational activities and news release for biodiversity and bio-safety, carrying out relevant training programs; To organize large-scale commemoration activities for publicity, such as ‘International Biodiversity Commemoration Day’ The division will be staffed by 3, 1 director and 2 members. 

Division of Partnership Cooperation Its main responsibilities are as follows:

To establish and operate biodiversity partnership mechanism by establishing China Biodiversity Partnership Framework (CBPF) with international organizations, national governments, Chinese governmental agencies, scientific research institutions, enterprises and administrative units, NGOs, private sectors; To organize partners to implement activities related to biodiversity conservation.

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To be responsible for the daily administration of the CBPF. To organize conservation and management work for biodiversity at the local level. To establish multi-form partnership with local governments and relevant bodies, providing guidance for the local governments to implement relevant plans and programs for biodiversity conservation and management. To establish cooperation and effect-enhancing coordinating mechanism with the implementation offices of other biodiversity-related international conventions The division will be staffed by 3, one director, two members. 4Consideration for other schemes Other schemes include the following: To appropriately congregate the directly relevant organizations for biodiversity to strengthen the biodiversity management, it may consider to remove the existing Division of Nature Reserve under Department of Ecology and Nature Conservation to the newly established Biodiversity Conservation Office since the former is directly connected with the biodiversity conservation and the CBD implementation. If this way, the Biodiversity conservation office could be enlarged to 25 personnel with this arrangement.

The responsibilities of the Division of Nature Reserves remain the same: To be responsible for comprehensive and supervision management for nature reserves nationwide, including the formulation and enforcement of relevant policies, regulations, criteria, guidelines and planning for nature reserves in whole China; To organize the evaluation for promotion of local nature reserves into national level. To monitor the administration work of nature reserves in whole China. To implement the Global Working Program for Protected Areas under the CBD. 5.4 Schemes for Strengthening the Institutional Capacity Building to Provide Technical Supports for CBD Implementation The CBD is highly specialized and extensive in its content. Its effective implementation requires timely and targeted technical support. Nanjing Institute of Environmental Sciences of the SEPA has been providing technical support for implementation of the CBD for years. The continuously increasingly implementation matters and new focal issues, however, require more specialized technology and more stable research groups to provide higher-quality technical support. Therefore, the implementation office attempts to establish some extra technical support network. So far, it has established technical supportors with Institute of Botany, Institute of Zoology, Institute of Microbiology of the Chinese Academy of Sciences. Still, a stable technical support system should consist of technical support organizations from different backgrounds xxxiii


rather than only one scientific research institution. The main responsibilities of the technical support system are as follows: 1) To provide specialized scientific and technical advice and services for the implementation of the Convention and domestic policy-making, including data system service, database establishment and management, establishment, updating and operation of the CHM; 2) Specialized technical advice in areas related to CBD implementation, such as agrobiodiversity, access and benefit sharing, invasive alien species, ecosystem approaches, integrating biodiversity into EIA, climate change etc 3) To provide and utilize biodiversity-related policy-making and monitoring system based on adequate data and information systems. 4) To prepare for the participation in the background study on the national solutions for the CBD negotiations and various issues. 5) To study and draft various reports, documents, resources submitted to the Secretary of the Convention, including the report on national implementation of the CBD; 6) To bring into effect major projects and carry out long-term scientific research to provide a solid scientific foundation for the implementation of the CBD. Therefore, it is necessary to establish a network of support systems including a group of scientific research institutions and academic organizations to provide technical support for the implementation of the CBD. Scientific research institutions, higher education institutions and non-governmental academic organizations with advantageous specialized knowledge and technique should be selected as members considering the comprehensive programming and tasks of the Convention. These organizations can be combined to form a technical support network through the implementation effort. Two schemes with different approaches have been considered as below: Scheme 1: Establishing a central technical support organization First of all, a central technical support organization has to be established under whose coordination different scientific and academic groups with different backgrounds can be united to provide technical backup. For example, establishing the subordinate organizations of the system as the core such as the Nanjing Institute of Environmental Sciences of SEPA, which provides technical support for the implementation of the CBD and at the same time combines the subordinate institutes of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, China Forestry Institute of Science and Technology to form the support system. Scheme2: Establishing a multi-core technical support system Under the multi-core technical support system, the scientific research institutes and higher-education institutions with the most or some authority can serve as the organizations to provide technical support for major issues of the Convention. In the macro aspects such as strategies and action plans, programming for species resources and conservation districts, the administration of policies and regulations, the environmental protection scientific research organization can serve as the central unit;

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In the aspects of species research and data establishment etc, the institutes of the Chinese Academy of Sciences can serve as the central unit; In the aspect of research, conservation and development concerning genetic resources and species resources, the subordinate institutes of the Chinese Academy of Agriculture, Chinese Academy of Forestry and Chinese Scientific Research Institute of Aquatic Products can be the central unit; In the aspect of research on ethnic traditional knowledge and Intellectual Property Rights, the research institutes of Central University for Nationalities and Chinese Academy of Social Sciences can be the central unit etc. The two approaches have their own advantages. Currently, each ministry has its own technical supporting system by using a central technical supporting organization. As the central organization is a unit under the ministry’s internal structure, it is convenient to get stable and fast technical service. As the organization has provided thess technical services for long time, they are usually experienced and have good understanding. However, as the CBD implementation has been extended a more wide range for activities, it requires more disciplines and higher technologies, Therefore, one institute could not meet with all technical requirements as its capacity limitation. it seems significant to extend technical supporting from different academic sources. Now we need to establish a technical supporting system that is based on ministry’s internal institutions and widely involved in all kinds of academic institutions and universities, in order to provide a firmed, high-qualified technical service to CBD implementation. 5.5 Guarantee Measures for Strengthening the Institutional Capacity Building for the implementation of the CBD

5.5.1

Strengthening the development of laws and regulations, establishing national regulations in compliance with international implementation and affirming corresponding statutory responsibilities.

Development of laws and regulations should be a key aspect of implementation work in China. First of all, Analyze the gaps and weaknesses in the existing regulations according to the requirements of the international conventions and national interests. Relevant laws and regulations should be formulated stage by stage for different sectors. They should be in compliance with the international conventions and affirm the functions of implementation bodies in the legal form. The establishment and enforcement of those regulation plans require the determination of the minister of the SEPA and support from the Department of Policies and Regulations of SEPA. 5.5.2 Strengthening programming and study on implementation issues, affirming respective responsibilities for each sector and activating their incentives. Since the implementation work is continuous, complicated and highly specialized, it is necessary to make mid-term and long-term plans and form ad hoc teams within relevant research bodies and higher education institutions to study national strategies for CBD implementation and stand pints for international negotiation. In regard with the assigned package tasks each concerned xxxv


sector must play an active role to better their implementation performance through appropriate division of work and clear awareness about its responsibilities 5.5.3 Increasing the financial implementation programs

investment

and

developing

international/national

The country needs to make huge investment in the comprehensive implementation of the CBD and the Safety Protocol. Efforts should be made to win international financial support to implement international programs. It is also of great importance to obtain national financial investment for the development of national biodiversity protection programs and the financial investment from international funds and NGOs, in particular in the programs serving to strengthen institutional capacity building. The implementation office or relevant agencies can be responsible for the advising and coordinating the implementation of these programs. 5.5.4 Strengthening publicity and education to enhance public awareness of biodiversity protection It is necessary to utilize all kinds of media, especially TV, newspapers and radio in various forms to strengthen the publicity on protection of biodiversity. Efforts should also be made to popularize the scientific education on biodiversity and make it part of primary and secondary education. The significance and necessity of institutional capacity building must be emphasized in the publicity and educational activities. Public participation mechanism should be established and it is necessary to strengthen the country’s institutional capacity building to activate the mechanism. 5.6 Building Coordinating Mechanism for the Implementation of Biodiversity-Related International Conventions

The CBD is a high-level framework convention with a wide range of topics including conservation of biodiversity, sustainable use of biodiversity and sharing of benefits, therefore, it is an international legal instrument providing guiding principles in the field of biodiversity protection, which must be brought into play sufficiently in the aspect of coordination with other international conventions to increase the implementation effect of the CBD. The Division of Partnership Cooperation under the Office of Biodiversity Protection must take initiatives to liaise with implementation offices of other Parties to international conventions such as the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, United Nation Convention to Combat Desertification and the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands, establishing common programming and coordination mechanisms in the aspects of convention implementation, objectives and action plans as well as program planning to enhance the implementation efficiency of the CBD and relevant conventions.

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APPENDIX: RESEARCH REPORT ON MAJOR COUNTRIES’ INSTITUTIONAL CAPACITY BUILDING TO IMPLEMENT CONVENTION ON BIOLOGICAL DIVERSITY 1. AUSTRALIA 2. BRAZIL 3. COSTA RICA 4 INDIA 5 SOUTH AFRICA 6. PHILIPPINE 7. GERMANY 8. NORWAY 9. SWEDEN 10. GENERAL PRICIPLES

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CBD Institutional Study Xue Dayuan EN  

CBD Institutional Study Xue Dayuan EN

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