Palau has signed up to an international agreement to protect the commercial use of its natural genetic resources.
It is the seventh Pacific Island country to ratify the Nagoya Protocol, which is aimed at protecting biodiversity.
The agreement ensures countries benefit from the use of their genetic resources and traditional knowledge by scientists and companies.
Stamatios Christopoulos, a United Nations ecosystems expert, said Palau’s government has committed to producing material in local languages to raise awareness about the agreement.
A total of 109 countries have ratified the Nagoya Protocol and the UN Environment programme says Tonga is also preparing to join the agreement.
The Federated States of Micronesia, Fiji, the Marshall Islands, Samoa, Solomon Islands and Vanuatu have already ratified.
[Source: Radio NZ Online]