Third meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Rotterdam Convention on the Prior Informed Consent Procedure for Certain Hazardous Chemicals and Pesticides in International Trade (PIC COP-3)
9-13 October 2006 | Geneva, Switzerland
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13 Oct &
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Web coverage:
Monday, 9 October - Tuesday, 10 October - Wednesday, 11 October - Thursday, 12 October - Friday, 13 October

Highlights for Friday, 13 October 2006

On Friday, COP-3 convened in plenary throughout the day to adoopt numerous decisions, includiing: the budget, the financial mechanism, and synergies with other chemical conventions. The non-compliance working group also met throughout the day but were not able to agree on procedures and mechanisms, postponing a decision for COP-4.

Ministerial Segment
The COP-3 Ministerial Segment continued on Friday morning under the theme "Towards the full implementation of the Rotterdam Convention: challenges and opportunities."

L-R: Matthew Gubb, SAICM Secretariat; Bill Murray, Secretariat; Yue Ruisheng, PIC COP-3 President; Niek van der Graaff, Joint Executive Secretary - FAO; and Shivaji Pandey, Director Plant Production and Protection Division of the FAO.

Robert Urquizo, Vice-Minister, Ministry of the Environment, Ecuador, outlined its programme for implementation, assisted by participation in the UNITAR pilot programme but called for continuing technical assistance to help carry it forward.
Haoua Outhman Djame, Minister, Ministry of the Environment and Fisheries, Chad, outlined its national actions and called for greater technical assistance and for the UNITAR pilot programme to continue in expanded form.
Mohamed Al amin Kabbashi Issa, Minister of Agriculture and Forests, Sudan, highlighted the difficulties of fulfilling convention implementation responsibilities without a sustainable financial mechanism and adequate technical assistance.
Shuichi Takano, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Japan, addressed plenary on the final day to urge delegates to agree on a compliance mechanism.
Oscar Carvallo Valencia, Ambassador, Permanent Mission of Venezuela to the United Nations, emphasised it was inappropriate to consider any coercive compliance measures ahead of settling a sustainable finance mechanism.
Ibrahim Bocar Daga, Ambassador of Mali in Rome, welcomed Mali's election to the COP-4 Bureau.
Socorro Rovirosa, Minister, Permanent Mission of Mexico to the United Nations, called for long-term vision and integrated policy on financing the Convention's implementation.
Juan Martabit, Permanent Representative, Permanent Mission of Chile to the UN in Geneva, noted that the Rotterdam Convention is a major step towards implementing Agenda 21.
Sazi B. Salula, Deputy Permanent Secretary, Vice-President's office, Tanzania, welcomed the opportunities for regional cooperation offered by NEPAD.
Samuel Yeye, Technical Advisor to the Minister of Environment, Burkina Faso, called for an early warning system on toxic chemicals.
Susan B. Hazen, Environmental Protection Agency, US, stressed informed decisions on whether or not to restrict trade in chemicals.
Yuichi Nakayama, Kobe University Research Institute on MEAs (KURIM), Japan, underscored synergies among chemicals-related MEAs.
L-R: Magnus Nystrom, Finnish Environment Institute; Merja Turunen, Ministry of the Environment of Finland; and Georg Karlaganis, Switzerland.
Delegation from Mali.

L-R: Abdoulaye Sanoko; Abdoulaye Traoure; and Modibo Mahamane Toure

Non-Compliance Working Group
The Non-Compliance Working Group did not reach an agreement on procedures and mechanisms pospoting a decision for COP-4.
Delegates consulted on an attempt to reach an agreement on compliance issues.
L-R: Judy Beaumont and Zini Manana of Environment & Sustainable Development Cooperation, South Africa
Denis Langlois, Foreign Affairs Canada
Side Event on GHS Implementation: "Contributing to National Chemical Safety and Effective Implementation of International Chemicals Agreements"
L-R: Julio César Baena, Technical Adviser on International Affairs, Ministry of Environment, Brazil; Swiss Ambassador Thomas Kolly; Eva Sandberg, Senior Advisor, Division for Ecomanagement Strategies and Chemicals, Ministry of Sustainable Development, Sweden; Ronke Soyombo, Fedral Ministry of Environment, Nigeria; Jonathan Krueger, UNITAR; Rosa Garcia Couto, Secretary of the Sub-Committee of Experts on the GHS, UNECE - Transport Division; and Pavan Baichoo, ILO
Jonathan Krueger, UNITAR, moderated the panel.
Rosa Garcia Couto, Secretary of the Sub-Committee of Experts on the GHS, UNECE - Transport Division
Ronke Soyombo, Fedral Ministry of Environment, Nigeria, informed participants of the development of Nigeria's national GHS implementation strategy, supported by the Government of Switzerland, and its links to international chemicals management agreements.
Eva Sandberg, Senior Advisor, Division for Ecomanagement Strategies and Chemicals, Ministry of Sustainable Development, Sweden, discussed EU implementation of GHS and the linkages of GHS-based tools, such as safety data sheets, used in the contect of EU implementation of the Rotterdam Convention.
Julio César Baena, Technical Adviser on International Affairs, Ministry of Environment, Brazil
In his closing remarks, Swiss Ambassador Thomas Kolly, highlighted that the event had confirmed the clear links between the GHS and the Rotterdam Convention and that GHS implementation must involve all social partners.
Pietro Fontana, Switzerland
Fragamou Sy Diop, Senegal
Niegn-Ehn Kekula, Sr., Environment Protection Agency, Liberia
Closing of the meeting

President Yue Ruisheng thanked Switzerland for hosting COP-3, COP Bureau and paid tribute to NiekVan der Graaff, referring to him as “the “father of the PIC procedure”.

Niek van der Graaff highlighted progress achieved in the international sound chemicals management and, referring to COP-3’s failure to list chrysotile asbestos, noted that it would be very difficult to add chemicals in the future through the normal process and urged parties explore other ways to achieve future listings through, for example, amending the Convention.

Amb. Thomas Kolly, Switzerland
Atle Fretheim, Norway
Farah Bouqartacha, Morocco
Denis Langlois, Foreign Affairs Canada
Bill Murray, Secretariat
Ives Gómez, Secrtariat of Environment and Natural Resources (SEMARNAT), Mexico
Andrea Repetti, Argentina, celebrated her birthday with her election as COP-4 President.
Georg Karlaganis, Switzerland
Song Dong, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, People's Republic of China
Oswaldo Álvarez, Chile, welcomed Andrea Ripetti as the incoming COP President.
Jill Hanna, EC, on behalf of the EU, welcomed decisions on synergies and technical assistance, and noted the decision on financial mechanisms presents a balanced decision.
Merja Turunen, Ministry of the Environment of Finland
A delegation of Kobe University Research Institute on MEAs (KURIM) in consultation.

L-R: Mai Okuno; Yuichi Nakahama; and Zsuzsanna Magyar.

Conference Room Papers.

L-R: Frank Moser, and Laura Meszaros

Yue Ruisheng, PIC COP-3 President, said while much has been achieved, more efforts are required on implementation, and gaveled the meeting to a close at 7:18 pm.
Hamoud Darwish Salim Al-Hasani, Ministry of Agriculture & Fisheries, Oman
Niek van der Graaff, Joint Executive Secretary - FAO
Yue Ruisheng, PIC COP-3 President, and Maged Younes, Head of UNEP Chemicals, congratulating Niek van der Graaff, Joint Executive Secretary - FAO on his retirement.
Around the conference
L-R: Jozef Buys, Belgium; Bill Murray, Secretariat; Masa Nagai, Secretariat; and Niek van der Graaff, Joint Executive Secretary - FAO
L-R: Jill Hanna, Jozef Buys, Karen Alvarenga, Leila Mead, Leonie Gordon, Frank Moser and Richard de Ferranti
Carolyn Vickers, WHO
L-R: Elise Haber, Department of Foreign Affairs, South Africa; Jill Hanna, EC; Jozef Buys, Belgium; and Glenn Wiser, The Center for International Environmental Law (CIEL)
Christian Pastore, UNON
L-R: Maged Younes, Head of UNEP Chemicals, and David Brown, US
L-R: Marianne DePape and Marcela Rojo, IISD Reporting Services
L-R: Leonie Gordon, ENB, Marianne DePape and Marcela Rojo, IISD Reporting Services
L-R: Diego Noguera and Renata Foltran, ENB
The ENB team. L-R: Karen Alvarenga, Brazil; Richard de Ferranti, Australia; Joe Nyangon, Kenya; Leila Mead, United States of America; Xenya Cherny Scanlon, Russia; Diego Noguera, Colombia; and Leonie Gordon, United Kingdom
Web coverage:
Monday, 9 October - Tuesday, 10 October - Wednesday, 11 October - Thursday, 12 October - Friday, 13 October
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