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INFORMATION UPDATE REGARDING NGO FORUM STATUS

5 June 1995

Given that the site for the NGO Forum has not yet been determined, we realize that there are many questions and a lot of speculation regarding the status of the Forum. In this update, we have tried to provide answers, as best we can at this time, to some of the most frequently asked questions. Please share this information with as many people as possible within your networks.

Questions & Answers:

SITE

Q. Has a new site been chosen for the NGO Forum?

A. We are still negotiating with the Chinese regarding the location of the Forum. UN Under Secretary Kittani and Supatra Masdit, the Forums Convenor, are meeting with the Chinese Organizing Committee in Beijing this week to resolve the matter. We expect to have a final decision by the middle of next week, and we will distribute an update via fax networks and Internet as soon as more concrete information is available.

CONFIRMATIONS

Q. When will I get my confirmation?

A.Confirmations for registrations received before the 30 April postmark deadline are being finalized. All letters will be mailed out by June 6, 1995.

Q. Re "official confirmation letter". What does this mean & what do I do with it?

A. Your official confirmation letter states that you are formally registered as a participant at the NGO Forum on Women. You will receive TWO original copies this letter. The first of these you will need when you apply for a visa from the Chinese Consulate/Embassy in your country, make sure you use the original letters, photocopies will not be accepted by the Chinese Authorities. BRING THE SECOND ORIGINAL LETTER WITH YOU TO CHINA AS IT WILL BE REQUIRED IN ORDER TO OBTAIN YOUR FORUM IDENTIFICATION PASS.

Q.What do I do if there is no Chinese Consulate/Embassy in my country?

A. Find out from your government where the consulate or embassy that services your country is based. Your application for a visa will then have to be sent by mail directly to that address.

Q. How much time does it take to process a visa application?

A. This will vary from country to country. Here in New York, a visa application made for China takes one week to process, and is valid for a three month period.

Q. If I cant attend the Forum, will I get a refund of my $50 registration fee?

A. No. The registration fees have been applied to the cost of processing applications and other expenses associated with the organizing of the Forum. However, as was stated in the registration packet, all cacellations we received in writting by the registration deadline (April 30) will receive $25 dollars refund. Cancelations received after the deadline will not be refunded.

Q. Someone from my organization is registered but can not come.

Can we send a replacement or substitute?

A. No, unfortunally we can not accept any replacement or substitutions.

Q. Will the number of participants be limited?

We expect everyone who sent a completed registration form postmark by the deadline will receive confirmation letters from this office.

ACTIVITIES / NETWORKING / LINKING UP

Q. If I requested to do an activity or an event, can I assume we will be able to do it and plan accordingly?

A. The NGO Forum expects that all requests for activities received by the deadline can be met. However, until the site is determined, we cannot tell you whether all your space, time and equipment requests can be fulfilled. The standard time slot is currently set at 1 hour and 45 minutes. We will attempt to accommodate requests for longer time slots.

Q. When will I get information about my Activity Request?

A. All completed activity requests should have received a postcard acknowledgement at the end of May. Activity confirmation letters will be issued the first week of July. This confirmation letter will include the location (building & room number), date and time of the activity. Once participants have received their confirmation letter, they should in turn confirm their participation with the Forum via fax ASAP.

Q. Will it be possible to schedule meetings once we are in Beijing? What plans are there to accommodate spontaneous meetings?

A. We plan to keep some rooms available for daily bookings, and we will be set up to manage a broad range of daily requests and to create daily announcements.

Q. If I am planning to go by myself, what can/will the Forum do to link me up with others?

A. The NGO Forum Office is preparing a comprehensive program of events, including information on special areas and spaces that will be set aside for specific issues and constituencies such as environment, peace, alternative media, grassroots women, etc. and special regional areas (e.g. Africa Tent, Asia/Pacific Tent, Latin America/Caribbean Tent, etc.). Individuals will be able to go to the regional or issue space most appropriate for them, and here they will be able to meet up with people from the same region, or with similar interests.

HOTELS

***PLEASE NOTE THAT YOU MUST BOOK AND CONFIRM YOUR HOTEL RESERVATIONS THROUGH THE CHINA ORGANIZING COMMITTEE. ALL FORMS SENT TO THE FORUM OFFICE IN NEW YORK HAVE BEEN SENT ON TO CHINA. WE WILL CONTINUE TO SEND ANY FORMS THAT WE RECEIVE ON TO CHINA, BUT WE CAN MAKE NO GUARANTEES REGARDING YOUR HOTEL ACCOMMODATIONS. THE FORUM HAS NO RESPONSIBILITY FOR HOTEL RESERVATIONS.

IF YOU HAVE QUESTIONS ABOUT ACCOMMODATIONS PLEASE CONTACT THE CHINESE ORGANIZING

COMMITTEE. THEIR ADDRESS IS:

No. 15 Jlanguomen Street,

Beijing 100730, P.R. China.

Tel: (8610) 5221133 next: 3006

Fax: (8610) 5225329

Q. I have sent my hotel reservation form to China but have not heard anything. What should I do?

A. All hotel reservations will be handled EXCLUSIVELY by the China Organizing Committee (COC).They will contact you directly regarding your hotel reservations, or you may contact them directly via fax or phone. If you have made your travel and accommodation arrangements through a travel agent, you should make sure that they have been in contact with the COC and that you receive a hotel confirmation form directly from the Committee.

Q. Is May 31 the cutoff date for the hotel bookings?

A. No. We have been informed by the COC that the deadline has been extended to June 23, 1995 because of the delays resulting from the proposed site change.

LOCAL FACILITIES

Q. When will you provide us with information regarding where we can send books (or any other materials) ?

A. We are waiting to hear from the COC. This and other practical information will be sent out in our Pre-Beijing information packet schedule to be mailed in July, and a letter will be sent to all those requesting booths/exhibition space, etc. with specific information regarding customs, freight requirements.