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LMCM II: The Importance of Common Grounds

Tuesday, 28 June 2011

The Indonesian Government reaffirms its strong initiative and commitment in the discussion of the Protection of Genetic Resources, Traditional Knowledge and Folklore (GRTK) in the Inter-Governmental Council (IGC) WIPO forum. Such statement was articulated by the Director General of Law and International Treaties (DG HPI) MOFA, Linggawati Hakim, in the opening ceremony of the Second Session of Like Minded Countries Meeting on the Protection of Genetic Resources, Traditional Knowledge and Folklore / LMCM-GRTKF II) in Legian, Bali, 27 June 2011.
DG HPI extended her appreciation to the participants of the meeting and emphasized how the importance of the meeting was to establish common ground understanding among the like mind countries in the 19th IGC WIPO 2011. The joint position of the like mind countries is what serves as a basis for negotiation and anticipation in convening the Diplomatic Conference 2012 in order to endorse the draft of the legal text for GRTKF protection into an international legally binding instrument.
The meeting that will be held until 30 June 2011 is Indonesia’s effort in propelling the discussion of the draft legal text GRTKF in Inter-Governmental Council that has for 8 years remained stagnant due to different interests between the developed states and the developing states especially in the issue of the protection of Genetic Resources and Traditional Knowledge in Intellectual Property Rights (HKI).
The meeting was attended by 50 participants comprising of experts in the field of GRTKF representing 19 states (South Africa, Algeria, Angola, Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, Kenya, Colombia, Malaysia, Egypt, Myanmar, Namibia, Pakistan, Peru, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Thailand and Zimbabwe) and 3 international and non-government organizations, i.e. WIPO (World Intellectual Property Organization), ICTSD (International Centre for Trade and Sustainable Development), and South Centre. During the meeting, participants will be divided into 3 working groups that will handle Genetic Resources, Traditional Knowledge and Folklore.

In the sidelines of the meeting, the Interactive Dialogue on Indonesian Culture among Global Culture will be held on 29 June 2011. Among the speakers are I Gede Ardika, Tantowi Yahya, Pandji Pragiwaksono and Prof. Dr. I Gede Parimartha.
Many important issues will be discussed, such as the preservation of national cultural heritage in facing globalization, Indonesia’s potency in developing cultural heritage as asset and national potency within global culture as well as other issues that are related to economic development.
Background in Convening LMCM II

In order to protect the richness and diversity of the cultural, social, religious and spiritual as well as economic values of GRTKF, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has made various efforts both on national level and international level.
These efforts were generated by various claims from foreigners on the ownership of GRTKF and exploitation on its commercial use without profit sharing. Lack of understanding and awareness from the Indonesian society about GRTKF and the absence of a national and international legally binding instrument further strengthen these claims. (Dit. Infomed/DSK)

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