Convention on Biological Diversity

Signed by 150 government leaders at the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro in 1992, the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) aims to promote sustainable development. Conceived as a practical tool to translate the principles of 21's Agenda into reality, the Convention recognizes that biological diversity is more than plants, animals and micro-organisms and their ecosystems - it is about people and our need for food security, medicine, fresh air and water, shelter and a clean, healthy environment to live.

It is now the main world forum for issues related to the topic. Around 196 countries have already signed the agreement, which entered into force in December 1993. The CBD is structured on three main bases:

  • The conservation of biological diversity,
  • The sustainable use of biodiversity and
  • The fair and equitable sharing of benefits arising from the use of genetic resources – and refers to biodiversity at three levels: ecosystems, species and genetic resources.

The Convention encompasses everything that directly or indirectly refers to biodiversity – and it works, thus, as a kind of legal and political framework for several other conventions and more specific environmental agreements, such as the Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety; the International Treaty on Phylogenetic Resources for Food and Agriculture; the Bonn Guidelines; the Guidelines for Sustainable Tourism and Biodiversity; the Addis Ababa Principles for the Sustainable Use of Biodiversity; the Guidelines for the Prevention, Control and Eradication of Invasive Alien Species; and the Principles and Guidelines of the Ecosystem Approach to Biodiversity Management.

The Convention also initiated the negotiation of an International Regime on Access to Genetic Resources and the Sharing of Benefits resulting from such access; established thematic work programs; and led to several cross-cutting initiatives.

It was ratified in São Tomé and Príncipe in 1995.

See here the text of the Convention in Portuguese and English

Find out more at:


São Tomé, 26 de Julho de 2023

Nacional Contact

 Aurélio de Sousa Jesus Rita

CBD focal point for Sao Tome and Principe

  • qxio-ios-telephone+239 990 88 88

Global Framework for Biodiversity

This landmark framework, which supports the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals and builds on the Convention's past strategic plans, sets out an ambitious path towards achieving the global vision of a world living in harmony with nature by 2050.

International Biodiversity Day

The United Nations proclaimed May 22 as the International Day for Biological Diversity to increase understanding and awareness of biodiversity issues.

Conference of the Parties

The Conference of the Parties (COP) is the supreme decision-making body under the Convention on Biological Diversity - CBD. The first four COP meetings were held annually.
  • List of Parts