Publishing Competent National Authorities (CNA) | Step-by-step guides | About ABSCH | Access and Benefit-Sharing Clearing-House
Step-by-step guide

Publishing Competent National Authorities (CNA)

Introduction to the ABS Clearing-House

The Access and Benefit-Sharing Clearing-House (ABS Clearing-House or ABSCH) has been developed as a tool to support the implementation of the Nagoya Protocol. It serves as a means for sharing of information related to access and benefit-sharing arising out of the utilization of genetic resources. In particular, it provides access to information made available Parties, as well as other stakeholders, relevant to the implementation of the Nagoya Protocol.

Minimum Requirements

1. Please ensure you are using the latest version of a popular internet browser, such as: 

2. To be able to submit reference records, you will need a CBD Account. Opening an account only takes a few minutes and requires a valid email address.

3. To publish national records, in addition to a CBD Account, you will also need the appropriate role (Publishing Authority or Authorized User) to access and publish information on behalf of your government.

Getting help

Help using the ABS Clearing-House is always available. The Secretariat is happy to help if you experience any technical difficulties or if you have any questions or feedback on using the ABS Clearing-House. To contact  the Secretariat, please  e-mail us at or use the live chat help desk.  The live chat help desk can be accessed by clicking on the green question mark located in the bottom right corner of the page for immediate interaction with Secretariat staff for technical support and guidance.

About Competent National Authorities (CNA)

Under Article 13 of the Nagoya Protocol, each Party shall designate one or more competent national authorities (CNAs) on access and benefit-sharing and under Article 14, Parties are required to make information on these CNAs available to the ABS Clearing-House. Competent national authorities shall, in accordance with applicable national legislative, administrative or policy measures (ABS measures), be responsible for granting access or, as applicable, issuing written evidence that access requirements have been met and be responsible for advising on applicable procedures and requirements for obtaining prior informed consent (PIC) and entering into mutually agreed terms (MAT). The information on the competent national authority can help potential users of genetic resources and/or associated traditional knowledge in identifying who the responsible government entity is for granting access to these resources. 

If there is more than one CNA in the country, each CNA should be published as a separate record with their specific responsibilities clearly explained. It is important to keep the contact information up-to-date and the description of responsibilities clear and concise in order to provide potential users with accurate information.

STEP 1: Sign in to the ABS Clearing-House

To sign in, click the “SIGN IN” link located at the very the top right corner of the page, and enter your email and password.  If you have forgotten your password please click the following link to reset it: If you don’t have a CBD account, you can create one at:

STEP 2: Edit an existing record or open a new submission form

Once you have signed in, click on “Submit” in the main navigation bar and you will be taken to your Record Management Centre Dashboard. 



The Dashboard provides an overview of the shared national records for your country. Click on the name of the type of record you would like to edit or add to the ABS Clearing-House. 


Open a submission form

Next, click the "Add New" button or click on the "Edit" icon associated to the record you would like to update to open the submission form.

Submission form controls

Please fill in the submission form and complete all fields. Mandatory fields are indicated with an asterisk(*). The highlighted button shows you what step of the submission process you are currently on.  Clicking on the "Introduction" tab will give you important information on how to complete the form. Clicking on the "Review" tab will allow you to preview the record and highlight the mandatory fields that need to be filled before it is possible to publish the record. The record can be saved as a draft at any time. Frequently saving of records is recommended.


Submission language(s)

It is possible to introduce information one or more of the six official UN languages. The first question on each submission form asks you to select the languages you wish to submit the record in (at least one language needs to be selected). 

Website language

If you wish to view to the submission form in another language, you may change the language of the website by selecting one of the UN languages from the drop down menu located at the very top right hand corner of the screen

STEP 3: Complete the CNA form

The key sections of the Competent National Authority form are the Coordinates, Legal, administrative or policy basis for the competence of the CNA and the Responsibilities.


The mandatory fields (City, Country, Phone number and Email) are indicated below. Please ensure they are completed correctly.


Legal, administrative or policy basis for the competence of the CNA

In the section “Legal, administrative or policy basis for the competence of the CNA”, a link to the published ABS measure granting the competence of the CNA can be included. If you have not yet published the relevant ABS measure, please remember to provide the link to the appropriate ABS Measure once it has been published.



If this is not the only designated CNA for your country, you will be asked to provide a short description of responsibilities, area of jurisdiction, and keywords to help describe its scope of responsibilities. Please note that the responsibilities of each published CNA must be clearly defined.

Important: If another CNA has already been published as the only designated CNA for your country, first you must update that record by including details on its responsibilities, before you will be able to publish another CNA.

STEP 4: Review

Once you have completed all the fields, click on the “Review” tab to check that all the mandatory fields have been properly filled. On this tab a message will highlight any missing fields that need to be filled before it is possible to publish the record. You may click on the missing field to go to that field in the submission form.


When all the mandatory fields have been filled correctly, the message “the document is valid” will appear.  You are almost done! The next and final step is to publish the record.

STEP 5: Publish

To publish a record, click on the "Publish" tab. If you record contains any errors you will be redirected back to the Review tab until the errors are correct.  Please note that you can save the record as a draft at any time. 


If you are the Publishing Authority, you see the green “Publish”  button and will be able to publish the record directly on the ABS Clearing-House.


If you are a National Authorized User, you will see the red “Request Publication” button.  Clicking this button will automatically send a request to the Publishing Authority to verify and approve your submission before it will become publicly available on the ABS Clearing-House.