ENB:04:50 [Next] . [Previous] . [Contents]

INFORMAL WORKING GROUP ON FINANCE

Co-Chair Pierre-Marc Johnson opened the afternoon session by announcing that he no longer wanted to hear well-known positions, but new proposals for all of the paragraphs in document A/AC.241/L.19. Rather than begin actual negotiations, the Chair announced that the Secretariat would integrate all the proposals in a new text, to be distributed on Monday.

PREAMBLE: With regard to paragraph 19 (provision of resources to affected developing country Parties), Canada, supported by the US, replaced the provision of "increased" financial resources with "substantial." The G-77 preferred "substantial new and additional financial resources."

ARTICLE 4 -- GENERAL OBLIGATIONS: In sub-paragraph 2(h) (use of existing bilateral and multilateral funding arrangements), the EU did not support the reference to "bilateral and multilateral" and opposed reference to "new" resources. The US added language on promoting greater efficiency in the use of existing bilateral and multilateral arrangements." Canada deleted "mitigating the effects of drought." The G-77 and China wanted to promote bilateral and multilateral mechanisms and financial arrangements.

ARTICLE 9 -- BASIC APPROACH (ACTION PROGRAMMES): In paragraph 2 (priority to action programmes of affected developing country Parties), the G-77 and China wanted a reference to the provision of resources by developed country Parties and deletion of the phrase "as mutually agreed." The EU stressed that "as mutually agreed" should be retained. Sweden objected to including the notion of developed country Parties and Japan preferred the existing paragraph.

ARTICLE 13 -- SUPPORT FOR THE ELABORATION AND IMPLEMENTATION OF ACTION PROGRAMMES: In sub-paragraph (b) (use of cooperation mechanisms), the EU proposed deleting the last phrase, "which ensure the replicability of successful pilot programme activities where relevant." The US proposed replacing "ensure" with "promote." The G-77 preferred "with a view to ensuring."

ARTICLE 22 -- CONFERENCE OF THE PARTIES: In sub-paragraph 2(g) (approving a budget for the Conference of Parties), the developed countries preferred deleting the list of sources of financing, since this is a matter for the COP. However, if financing is spelled out, Australia preferred retaining the reference to the regular budget of the UN, the US supported voluntary contributions, and Norway supported voluntary and assessed contributions. The G-77 preferred the regular budget of the UN and voluntary contributions.

ARTICLE 20 -- FINANCIAL RESOURCES: The G-77 and China amended paragraph 1, calling on developed countries to: ensure the provision of substantial, concessional financial resources; facilitate the mobilization of and provide regular, timely, predictable, new and additional funding, including grants and concessional loans; and cancel or reduce the debts of affected developing countries. Sweden wanted to maintain the call for affected developing country Parties to allocate adequate financial resources for the implementation of the Convention.

In paragraph 2 (use of various funding sources), the G-77 and China deleted reference to national funding sources and mechanisms. Sweden said the paragraph should not state "involve" private sector funding, since the private sector cannot be bound by this Convention.

The G-77 and China accepted paragraph 3 (ways of mobilizing financial resources), with minor amendments. The Group added three new sub-paragraphs that address: the contributions of multilateral finance institutions; the mobilization of domestic resources in affected developing countries; and reference to the inability of developing countries to comply effectively with their obligations under the Convention unless the developed countries transfer financial resources and technology.

ARTICLE 21 -- FINANCIAL MECHANISMS: The most contentious issue in this article was paragraph 3, which provides for a global fund. The G-77 and China endorsed the idea, and see existing funds as supplementary to the global fund. The EU and the US are opposed to the establishment of a new institution and called for the deletion of the paragraph. They stressed the need for improved management, mobilization and coordination of existing funds. Sweden pointed out that a global institution would have high administrative costs, which would result in few funds getting to the local level. Nigeria added that creating a global mechanism could strip the Convention of the particularity to Africa. The EU also thought paragraph 4 should be deleted.

Few amendments were made by the G-77 and China and the EU in paragraphs 1 and 2. The former outlines the COP's approaches and policies to maximize the availability of funds, while the latter deals with funding mechanisms through the UN system. The EU prefers that these issues be referred to "the Parties" rather than the COP. Egypt amended paragraph 5 (national coordinating mechanism) to ensure multiple sources of funding for the national action programmes referred to in Article 10. In paragraph 6, the EU suggested that the Parties shall compile and maintain an inventory of available resources in relation to the implementation requirements.

[Return to start of article]