After over two decades of negotiations, the African Group proposed to convene a Diplomatic Conference to conclude a treaty on Genetic Resources and Traditional Knowledge Associated with Genetic Resources (the ‘Treaty’), during the 2022 WIPO General Assembly. This proposal was adopted by the General Assembly and a decision was made to hold the Diplomatic Conference no later than 2024.

The purpose of the Treaty is to enhance the efficacy, transparency and quality of the patent system with regard to genetic resources and traditional knowledge associated with genetic resources and to help prevent patents from being granted erroneously for inventions that are not novel or inventive with regard to genetic resources and traditional knowledge associated with genetic resources.

The Diplomatic Conference was scheduled for 13th to 24th May, 2024 at the WIPO Headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland. After 12 days of intense negotiations and discussions, a treaty was adopted, thanks to the gallant efforts of the African Group and other groups who engaged in the deliberations.

The Treaty acknowledges the invaluable contributions of genetic resources and the traditional knowledge preserved by Indigenous Peoples and Local Communities and sets a framework for preserving biodiversity and ensuring that future generations can enjoy the rich heritage that these resources and knowledge represent.

Under the distinguished leadership of His Excellency Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, the Republic of Ghana is proud to be part of this history-making geared towards sustainable development.

The Deputy Attorney-General and Minister for Justice, Hon. Diana Asonaba Dapaah, was honoured to sign the treaty on behalf of the Republic of Ghana during the signing ceremony held on the final day of the Diplomatic Conference.

The Office of the Attorney General and Ministry of Justice, under the stellar leadership of the Honourable Attorney-General, Godfred Yeboah Dame, is particularly grateful to the Registrar-General, Mrs. Grace Ama Issahaque and the experts who represented Ghana at the Diplomatic Conference, Prof. Hans Adu Dapaah and Prof. Paul Kuruk. Special thanks also go to Amb. Emmanuel Antwi, Permanent Representative of the Ghana Permanent Mission in Geneva, and Mrs. Audrey Neequaye, First Secretary, Ghana Permanent Mission, Geneva and all who promoted Ghana’s interest in the discussions over the years.

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