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United Nations Conference for the Negotiation of a Successor Agreement to the International Tropical Timber Agreement, 1994, 4th part


16–27 January 2006 | Geneva, Switzerland
 

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Highlights from Monday, 16 January 2006

Delegates convened at the Palais des Nations in Geneva, Switzerland for the opening of the UN Conference for the Negotiation of a Successor Agreement to the International Tropical Timber Agreement, 1994 (ITTA, 1994), Fourth Part. In the morning, delegates gathered for a brief plenary session before breaking into two working groups. Working Group I, chaired by Alhassan Attah (Ghana), facilitated discussion on the text's Preamble and Objectives, while Working Group II, chaired by Jürgen Blaser (Switzerland), discussed the agreement’s financial arrangements. The working groups reconvened in the afternoon to address outstanding issues. UN Conference President Amb. Carlos Antonio da Rocha Paranhos emphasized the importance of finding agreement on contentious issues by next Tuesday, to enable legal drafting of the new Agreement and finalization of the text by delegates.

 

Morning Plenary

During the opening plenary, Pres. Paranhos noted progress made at ITTC-39 during informal discussions on the ITTA's new financial arrangement and urged delegates to successfully conclude their discussions at this session. Lakshmi Puri, Director, Division for International Trade in Goods and Services and Commodities, recognized the unique function of the ITTA as a commodity agreement and the urgency of concluding negotiations, since the ITTA, 1994 expires at the end of 2006.

 
ITTA4 opening panel

Left to right: Alexei Mojarov, UNCTAD, Lakshmi Puri, UNCTAD, Manoel Sobral Filho, ITTO Executive Director, President Carlos Antonio da Rocha Paranhos, Brazil, Lisanne Losier, UNCTAD, and Carlos Moreno Mericaechevarria, Advisor, Legal Services

 
ITTA4 President
UN Conference President, Ambassador Carlos Antonio da Rocha Paranhos urged delegates to reach agreement by next Tuesday
ITTA Plenary
Morning plenary session


Working Group I

Chair Attah guided WGI through the Preamble and Objectives, addressing outstanding issues such as the inclusion of the phrase "indigenous peoples," the placement of "ecosystem services" and the reference to International Labour Organization conventions. Notably, delegates also agreed to keep the name of the Organization as International Tropical Timber Organization instead of changing it to the International Forest Products Organization.

 
Left to right: Alexei Mojarov, UNCTAD, WGI Chair Alhassan Attah, Ghana, and Hannah Davies, UNCTAD
 
ITTA4 President
Inga Magistad, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Norway, suggested using the stronger term “promote” instead of “encouraging” information sharing on market based mechanisms such as certification
ITTA Plenary
Swiss delegation proposed keeping reference to “ecological services," left to right: Jacques Borel, Department of Foreign Affairs, James K. Gasana, Swiss Foundation for Development and International Cooperation, and Franz Xaver Perrez, Swiss Agency for the Environment, Forests and Landscape
 
Erika del Rocio López Rojas, Head of International Financing and Cooperation, Mexico, proposed keeping either “ecological services” or “environmental services”
Iwan Krolis, Suriname, said that the issue of creating regional offices was tricky given the need to be more cost effective
Ouro-Djeri Essovrê, Ministry of Environment of Togo, requested keeping reference to “ecological services at local, national and global levels”
 
Stephanie Caswell, US, proposes compromise language on the importance of regional offices
Sheam Satkuru-Granzella, Malaysia, suggested including "promoting/encouraging information sharing on voluntary mechanisms to promote trade in tropical timber from sustainably managed forests
Nchemo Maile, Lesotho discussed the issue of encouraging members to develop national policies aimed at sustainable utilization and conservation of timber producing forests and their genetic resources
 
On encouraging members to develop national policies aimed at sustainable utilization and conservation of timber producing forests and their genetic resources, Koulangna Koutou, Cameroon, said the term “genetic resources” should be kept, as a definition of it will be needed
On recognizing the importance of the multiple economic, environmental and social benefits provided by forests, including “timber and non-timber products and ecological services,” J. C. Kala, India, suggested deleting “ecological services”
 
Malaysia suggested including "promoting/ encouraging information sharing on voluntary mechanisms to promote trade in tropical timber from sustainably managed forests". Left to right: Mohd Nazuri Hashim Shah, Aziyah Mdhd, and Sheam Satkuru-Granzella
Informal European consultations
 
The European Commission clarifies the term "legally harvested" sources
The Indonesian delegation suggests adding the term "poverty reduction" in the Objectives section.
Left to right: Bambang Tri Hartono, Wahjudi Wardojo, and Tri Tharyat
 
Left to right: Zhang Zhongtian and Mr. Panhoa, China
Simone Meira Dias and Valeria Rigueira Losito, Brazil consult on proposed language "encouraging" the certification of tropical timber-producing forests
 

Working Group II

In the morning and afternoon sessions, WGII Chair Jürgen Blaser (Switzerland) facilitated discussion on outstanding issues in Chapter VI (Finance), Chapter VII (Operational Activities) and Chapter XI (Final Provisions). Delegates considered contentious issues, including the level of assessed contributions for Producer and Consumer members. In the afternoon, a brief session was held to consider a proposal by Producer members on Consumers’ funding of the Special Account, Bali Partnership Fund and a “Thematic Programme Account.”

 

Chair Jürgen Blaser addresses the Group

 
WGII Chair Jürgen Blaser, Switzerland, and Lisanne Losier, UNCTAD
Left to right: Charlotte Cudby, New Zealand, Sandra Ribey, Canada, and Tony Bartlett, Australia
 
Enzo Barattini, Directorate-General for Development, European Commission, stated a European preference for a 50:50 split for contributions to administrative work and a 70:30 split for key policy work
Fredua Agyeman, Ministry of Lands and Forestry, Ghana, requested further clarification on the specific mechanism for the transfer of resources from donor members to the Bali Partnership Fund
 

Around ITTA-4

 

 

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Daily web coverage:
16 January - 17 January - 18 January - 19 January - 20 January
23 January - 24 January - 25 January - 26 January -
27 January

 
Links

UNCTAD’s website for the ITTA, 1994 renegotiation, 4th part. Includes the provisional agenda and supporting documents
ITTO Secretariat
UNFF Website
FAO
UNFF Secretariat
UNFCCC Secretariat
CBD Secretariat
ENB coverage of ITTC-39
ENB coverage of the UN Conference for the Negotiation of a Successor Agreement to the ITTA, 1994 - Part 1| Part 2 | Part 3
YMB summary of the Country-Led Initiative “Scoping for a Future Agreement on Forests”, 16-18 November 2005, Berlin, Germany (HTML, PDF, TEXT)
ENB summary from UNFF-5: (English: HTML, PDF, TEXT) (Spanish: HTML, PDF, TEXT) (French: HTML, PDF, TEXT)
YMB summary from the Europe and North Asia Forest Law Enforcement and Governance Conference, 6-8 June, 2005 Moscow, Russia: (HTML, PDF, TEXT)
YMB coverage the Europe and North Asia Forest Law Enforcement and Governance Conference, 22-25 November 2005, St. Petersburg, Russia
ENB archives of forestry meetings 

 
 
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