Bioprospecting is any activity undertaken to harvest or exploit all/any samples of the genetic resource or of any derivatives of genetic resources.

It is also the knowledge, innovations, and customary practices of local communities associated with those genetic resources, or for the purpose of research, product development, conservation or industrial or commercial application, including investigative research and sampling, not including customary uses of genetic resources and derivatives.

What activities require a permit?

Bioprospecting activities that requires permit are:

  • Undertaking or attempting to undertake biodiversity prospecting
  • Exporting of any specimen obtain from biodiversity prospecting.
  • Importing of any foreign organism that may have a significant adverse impact on Vanuatu's native flora or fauna.

Determination of Application

The Biodiversity Advisory Council is made up of the Chairperson of the Biodiversity Advisory Council which is the Director of DEPC who appoints the following persons to the Council established under section 29 of the Environmental Protection and Conservation Act [CAP. 283] (the Act):

Appointed personsOrganisations
Mr. Watson LuiDepartment of Forest
Mr. Jeremy KaltavaraDepartment of Fisheries
Mr. Mark VurobaravuDepartment of Agriculture and Rural Development
Maurisco BatickVanuatu Cultural Centre
Johnety JeretteDepartment of Foreign Affairs

The council must meet within 21 days after receiving an application from the Director for the purpose of determining the application.

The council either approves the application with or without terms and conditions, or refers the matter back to the Director for further assessment or rejects the application.

The Director must advise the applicant in writing of the council's decision within 14 days. If the councils refers the matter back to the Director or, it rejects the application, a written advice must be produced.

Permit Application

Any person wanting to undertake bioprospecting must apply in writing to the Director of Environment and Conservation. The application must includes the following:

The full address of the applicant.

  • Must include affiliate parties that will benefit from the research.
  • Must include description of nature and the extent and location of research.
  • Must include description of nature of any biological resources/traditional knowledge that is to be investigated.
  • Must include a timeline and sampling method.
  • The expected commercial research and development plan that may result from biodiversity.
  • and statement indicating confidentiality of the research.

Contact Us

Port Vila Office

Ministry of Climate Change Adaptation,
Meteorology & Geo-Hazards, Environment,
Energy and Disaster Management compound, Nambatu
PMB 9063, Port Vila
Phone: (678) 25302 | 33430

Luganville Office

Sanma Provincial Government Council,
PMB 239,

Location of DEPC Office

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