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CHAIR'S INTERSESSIONAL TASKS

: The Committee mandated its Chair, Bo Kjell‚n, to undertake consultations on several items during the intersessional period. The first issue is the terms of reference for the two working groups. Kjell‚n proposed several options: one working group could deal with commitment and principles and the other legal and institutional matters (the model used in the climate change negotiations) or one working group could address the legal general issues of the convention and other could focus on a protocol or annex on the situation in Africa. He promised that he would have a proposal prepared in time for the Nairobi session.

Kjell‚n must also undertake consultations regarding the election of officers to the bureaus of the working groups. Three of the regional groups had not submitted nominations by the conclusion of the organizational session (Western Europe and Others (WEOG), Latin America and Eastern Europe). Two problems developed in the closing hours of the session. The first was that WEOG requested an additional seat on the bureau of one of the working groups so that rather than choose between the two countries that want seats on the bureaus, they can nominate both of them. The other problem was that the Eastern European Group was not satisfied with the rapporteurship of one of the groups and requested a vice chairmanship instead. Kjell‚n is expected to consult with the regional groups and try to reach consensus on the distribution of seats on the working groups' bureaus.