Central African nation, Cameroon, adopts the Nagoya Protocol, ensuring fair sharing of benefits from genetic resources.

Cameroon’s Biodiversity:

  • Cameroon is home to an estimated 11,000 plant, animal, and microorganism species, making it a hotspot for biodiversity. 
  • These resources hold immense value for bioprospecting endeavors, including developing medicines and crops. 

Additionally, indigenous and local communities possess valuable traditional knowledge, further enhancing the country’s bioprospecting potential.

  • Biodiversity prospecting or bioprospecting is the systematic search for biochemical and genetic information in nature in order to develop commercially-valuable products for pharmaceutical, agricultural, cosmetic and other applications.

Bush Mango and its significance

  • The project supports bioprospecting activities on selected species, including the bush mango, which holds medicinal properties and economic value. 
  • This has attracted interest from European pharmaceutical and cosmetic companies, offering potential benefits for farmers and community development.
  • The leaves, roots and bark are used to treat scabs and skin pain. The fruit is also used to make soups, sauces, juice, wine, jam, jelly and flavouring. But research has shown that bush mango kernels can reduce obesity, control appetite, and lower fat and cholesterol levels.

The Nagoya Protocol: 

  • The Nagoya Protocol on ABS was adopted on 29 October 2010 in Nagoya, Japan.
  • It is a supplement agreement to the Convention on Biological Diversity.
  • Its objective is the fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from the utilization of genetic resources, thereby contributing to the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity.
  • India is party to the Nagoya Protocol.
  • The Nagoya Protocol also covers traditional knowledge (TK) associated with genetic resources that are covered by the CBD and the benefits arising from its utilization.

Strategic Agreements and Economic Potential:

  • Cameroon has entered agreements with French and Swiss companies under the Nagoya Protocol, paving the way for research and development on indigenous species and future commercial activities. 
  • This move is seen as unlocking Africa’s economic potential by empowering nations to recognize and exploit their biological resources responsibly.

Challenges and Initiatives:

  • Despite Cameroon’s efforts to implement the Nagoya Protocol through legislation, challenges remain, including a lack of implementing mechanisms, institutional capacity, and research and development on biodiversity. 
  • To tackle these issues, the Global Environment Facility is supporting a project aimed at enhancing research, bioprospecting, and understanding biodiversity value chains.


Cameroon’s adoption of the Nagoya Protocol promotes sustainable use of its biological resources through fair benefit-sharing. Collaborative initiatives demonstrate its commitment to equitable relationships with global industries.

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