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A SUMMARY OF THE ORGANIZATIONAL SESSION

The organizational session of the INCD was held from 26 - 29 January 1993 at UN Headquarters in New York. The purpose of the session was to adopt the rules of procedure and schedule of meetings, elect the officers of the Committee, establish the two working groups, agree on the agenda for the first substantive session and discuss the financial aspects of the process. At this meeting Ambassador Bo Kjell‚n of Sweden was elected Chair of the Committee and Ambassadors Ren‚ Val‚ry Mongbe (Benin), T.P. Sreenivasan (India) and Jos‚ Urrutia (Peru) were elected to the Bureau.

RULES OF PROCEDURE: The rules of procedure, as adopted by the INC, are based on the relevant rules of procedure of the General Assembly with modifications adapted from the rules of procedure of the Biodiversity and Climate Change INCs. Specifically, the Secretary-General of the UN or his representative is designated as the Secretary-General of the Committee and decision-making will be based on the rules of the General Assembly. Particular attention was paid to the rules of procedure for the participation of NGOs, especially in light of the changes underway within the UN system related to NGO participation. The Committee decided to invite NGOs to make contributions to the negotiating process on the understanding that they will have no role in the actual negotiations and that they will take into account the decisions of the UNCED Preparatory Committee concerning the participation of NGOs.

SCHEDULE OF MEETINGS: The organizational session adopted the schedule for the five meetings of the INCD. The first substantive session was scheduled to be held in Nairobi with subsequent sessions for 13-24 September 1993 (Geneva), 17-28 January 1994 (New York), 21-31 March 1994 (Geneva) and the final session, where the convention will be adopted, will be held in Paris in early June 1994.

SUBSIDIARY ORGANS: During the organizational session, it was also decided that the INCD will establish two working groups. These working groups will meet for the first time during the second substantive session in September 1993 and each working group will have a three person bureau. Amb. Kjell‚n will present a proposal for the organization of work of the working groups during the Nairobi session. The bureaus of the two working groups as of the end of the organizational session are: Chairs: Ahmed Djoghlaf (Algeria) and vacant (WEOG); Vice-Chairs: Morad-Ali Ardeshiri (Iran) and vacant (Latin America); Rapporteurs: Frederick Mallya (Tanzania) and vacant (Eastern Europe).

FUNDS: General Assembly Resolution 47/188 also established two special funds for the INCD. The first is a trust fund for the operation of the Secretariat and the second is a voluntary fund designed to facilitate the participation of developing countries in the process. Sweden, the Netherlands, Spain, the US, Germany, Norway, Japan, the UK, Canada and Denmark announced plans to contribute to one or both of these funds.

THE PROVISIONAL AGENDA FOR THE NAIROBI SESSION: A provisional agenda for this first substantive session was adopted during the organizational session. The agenda is divided into the following parts: organizational matters, information sharing, discussion on the format and content of the convention; review of the situation as regards extrabudgetary funds; adoption of the provisional agenda for the second substantive session and adoption of the report of the Committee.

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