Sustainability Exchange

ABS Capacity Development Initiative

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Organisation profile

Established in 2006, the multi-donor ABS Capacity Development Initiative contributes to achieving the SDGs by supporting the implementation of the Nagoya Protocol on Access and Benefit-sharing (ABS) and the third objective of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). Through targeted support services, the ABS Initiative facilitates three core processes:

  • developing ABS regulatory and institutional frameworks
  • negotiating fair and equitable ABS agreements
  • integrating indigenous peoples and local communities in respective procedures.

From the beginning, the ABS Initiative has directly supported the development of ABS-compliant biodiversity-based value chains in Africa. We have been raising awareness among all stakeholders along value chains – from producers, local SMEs and government authorities to companies in the North. We incorporate them in dialogues and support the negotiation of benefit-sharing agreements between users and providers of genetic resources and the associated traditional knowledge.

In February 2018, the ABS Initiative started the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Cooperation (SECO)co-financed sub-project “ABS Compliant Biotrade in South(ern) Africa” (ABioSA).

ABioSA aims to create a high-growth, jobs-rich and innovative biotrade sector that complies with international and domestic ABS regulations. It contributes to the livelihoods of rural populations and the productive use of South(ern) Africa’s plant biodiversity by creating jobs in biotrade value chains and substantially boosting the value generated from biotrade products from the region. ABioSA works with selected biotrade value chains, including some which straddle national borders.


Current donors of the ABS Initiative are the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ, host of the Initiative), the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Cooperation (SECO), the Organisation Internationale de la Francophonie/Institut de la Francophonie pour le développement durable (OIF/IFDD) and the 11th European Development Fund (through the ACP-EU Partnership Agreement). The Secretariat of the Initiative is located at the headquarters of the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH in Germany.

Contact information
ABS Initiative
Year of establishment: 
+49 6196 79-1340
Full address: 
Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH Dag-Hammarskjöld-Weg 1-5 65760 Eschborn
Country of activity:
Working language(s):
English, French
Expertise in Sustainability *:
Business & human rights
Ethical trade
Training and capacity building
Value chain

Documents associated to this organization.

Title Author(s) Publisher Publication date Abstract
abs compliant biotrade in south(ern) africa


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Andreas Drews ABS Capacity Development Initiative 2018 A short description of the project ABioSA that aims to create a high-growth jobs-rich and innovative biotrade sector that complies with international and domestic ABS regulations. It will support sustainable development goals and contribute to the livelihoods of rural people and the productive use...


Users associated to this organization.

  • Tobias Dierks

    ABS Capacity Development Initiative

    Position: Communication, advocacy expert; e.g. climate change, biodiversity

    Working languages: English, French, German

    Skill Specialization: Advisory and Consulting, Communications, Corporate Social Responsibility, Corporate Communications, Editing, Event Management, Information Management, Public Relations and Media Relations, Publishing, Web and Social Media, Writing, Editing, Publishing

    User Endorsement:

    # documents uploaded: 1

    # documents approved: 1


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