Request for proposals: The development of the Compound Library facility and a BioCultural Community Protocol

The development of a BioCultural Community Protocol


Request for Proposal: National Service Provider to facilitate the development of a BioCultural Community Protocol for the six Chiefdoms/Traditional authorities and their communities located under the Vhembe District Municipality, in Limpopo Province, South Africa

South Africa, through the Department of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries (DEFF), is part of the UNDP-GEF Global ABS Project titled: “Strengthening human resources, legal framework and institutional capacities to implement the Nagoya Protocol” which aims to facilitate the implementation of the Nagoya Protocol on Access and Benefit Sharing (ABS). Under Component 3 of the project, ‘Strengthening the capacity of indigenous and local communities to contribute to the implementation of the Nagoya Protocol’, the development of a BioCultural Community Protocol (BCP) is envisaged.

The DEFF has identified communities in the Vhembe area, Limpopo to be assisted in the development of a BCP. The identified communities are as follows: Manenzhe, Tshikundamalema, Makuya, Mutele, Thengwe and Rammbuda Traditional Authorities (Chiefdoms).

A BioCultural Community Protocol will assist these communities to:

  • Assert and defend their customary rights in relation to their surrounding biodiversity;
  • Promote and facilitate constructive dialogue and equitable partnerships with external stakeholders;
  • Prescribe a manner in which external stakeholders communicate with the communities;
  • Improve organization, representation and cohesion between and within communities;
  • Establish local systems and institutions in relation to ABS arrangements, in accordance with their customary laws and livelihood needs;
  • Set out conditions for granting access to their lands, resources and knowledge, such as procedures for Prior and Informed Consent (define rules for access to traditional knowledge/indigenous knowledge, plant materials, animal materials, microorganisms and benefit sharing agreement); and
  • Highlight the communities’ aspirations as well as the challenges and possible solutions.

The approved Annual Work Plan for the UNDP-GEF Global ABS project for the 2019/2020 financial year indicated that the body of work will require a national consultant to develop a BioCultural Community Protocol with DEFF as the supporting partner.

For full details, follow the link below: 


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The Compound Library facility


Request for Proposal: National Service Provider to undertake a pilot study on the Compound Library facility at the University of Pretoria, to further inform the establishment of a National Compound Library based on the Bioprospecting Sector of South Africa

The South African bioprospecting sector depends primarily on Research and Development (R&D) for product development and innovation however this is limited to a few institutions in the country or only focuses on specific segments of the market. Furthermore, academic environments are protective of their research knowledge which restricts access to this research to only few selected institutions. The growth of this sector within the country is fundamentally linked to a strong R&D focus.

The sector requires research and development of resources that are currently being utilised in the market. This R&D will also facilitate expansion of the market through opportunities offered by new genetic and biological resource utilisation and product development. The entire bioprospecting/biotrade value chain could benefit from a strong and growing R&D sector in the country. Furthermore, in a sector directly dependent on genetic/biological resources and fluctuating markets, substantive and ongoing research is crucial.

One of the fundamental objectives of the National Biodiversity Economy Strategy (NBES), is the establishment of a national repository of indigenous biological extracts and compounds, hence, the establishment of a National Compound Library (NCL) is a crucial development for the South African bioprospecting/biotrade sector. The NCL has the potential to act as a central hub for relevant information, house indigenous genetic and biological materials and compounds that are of commercial interest, standardise procedures and methodology for the sector, and serve as a sustainable use mechanism. The NCL will also play an important role in increasing the quantity and quality of indigenous biological compounds. Furthermore the NCL would enable quick investment access, an effective permitting system and provide a solution to benefit-sharing agreement issues.

The development of such an institution is regarded as a medium to long term goal; however an immediate action is to conduct a pilot study on an existing functional compound library located at the University of Pretoria (UP). As per the approved Annual Work Plan for 2019/2020 for South Africa, the body of work will require a national consultant to conduct an operational feasibility study on the compound library piloted at the University of Pretoria.

For full details, follow the link below: 


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