ABS Biodiscovery Case in Myanmar
Local usage and marketing of wild gingers motivate research on ABS and proper conservation strategies, important for future forest management.
The Zingiber plant group is one of the most valuable group of non-timber species found among the great diversity of Myanmar’s forests flora. Kachin’s ethnic groups are well versed in traditional knowledge of medicinal uses and other purposes.
Two examples of popular species and their traditional utilization are the Zingiber Capitatum and the Zingiber Zerumbet. The first one, chosen over other ginger species due to its taste, is usually used as a seasoner and as a vegetable, and the second one is mainly used by women during pregnancy and postpartum stage.
In this context, the Ministry of Health’s Department of Medical Research, the Department of Medical Services, and the Department of Traditional Medicine, as well as the University of Yangon and Institute of Medicine, are at the early stages of conducting research on the genus Zingiber and its various applications.
UNDP helps supporting government counterparts to develop ABS frameworks. “Finding tangible examples of biodiscovery, such as the zingiber case, can help to ground the discussions of what ABS might mean for both regulators and communities. While this is an ongoing learning process, UNDP supports all efforts to pursue sustainable development that protects the environment and benefits all people in Myanmar”, said Martin Cosier, Project Manager and Chief Technical Advisor of Governance for Resilience and Sustainability Project, UNDP Myanmar.
This project directly contributes to SDG 1 (No Poverty), SDG 3 (Good Health and well-being), SDG 15 (Life on Land) through policies schemes destinated to protect the Myanmar’s genetic resources and to ensure the fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from their development, and the use of the traditional knowledge related to them.
Read moreabout this biodiscovery case here.
Learn more about biodiversity in Myanmar and the implementation of the Nagoya Protocol here.