Last summer, a two-year EU project was started to raise awareness of the Plant Breeders' Rights system among local companies and the governments of countries affiliated to OAPI.
OAPI (l’Organisation Africaine de la Propriété Intellectuelle) focuses on granting Plant Breeders' Rights in 17 French-speaking African countries. These countries have a common system of Plant Breeders' Rights. Plant Breeders' Rights is possible, but rarely used in these countries.
The organisations that cooperate and provide technical support to OAPI are: the International Union for the Protection of New Varieties of Plants (UPOV), the Community Plant Variety Office (CPVO), the French Seeds and Plants Intergovernmental Group (GNIS), GEVES and Naktuinbouw.
The EU subsidises a project called PPOV (Projet de Promotion des Obtentions Végétales). Vladimir Mezui is the project leader assigned from OAPI's head office in Cameroon.
The focus area is raising awareness of the Plant Breeder's Rights system in all 17 affiliated countries. Researchers, seed producers and associations of agricultural producers, in both the public and private sectors, are the target group of this project.
OAPI takes over reports on DUS testing of vegetables and ornamentals from other UPOV members. They only want to perform their own DUS tests for a number of important agricultural crops, such as cassava, maize and cereals.
Within the project framework, the cooperating parties (Geves, Naktuinbouw, UPOV, CPVO and GNIS) advise on DUS testing at research stations in countries including Cameroon, Senegal, Burkina Faso and Ivory Coast.
Naktuinbouw contributes its expertise of a robust, practical system of Plant Breeders' Rights. We provide practical examples to help the practical organisation and implementation of the system.
The project includes various meetings and visits to the different countries and research stations. In the summer of 2020, delegates from the 17 countries and from OAPI will visit us to see how we perform DUS testing in the Netherlands. They will also visit GEVES in France.
Under the conditions of the project, it has been agreed that OAPI delegates will attend the UPOV meetings in the next two years. If you would like to learn more about the delegates, you can meet them there.