At 5:30 pm the Plenary reconvened to take care of organizational matters and adopt its report. The Chair announced that during the intersessional period he would direct a letter to a number of international organizations that might be able to provide a home for the Global Mechanism and ask them to express their observations. These letters will be sent to UNDP, UNEP, the World Bank, GEF and IFAD. He hopes to have the observations of these organizations in time for INCD-7.
The Committee then adopted a draft resolution entitled, "Promotion of Public Awareness: Observance of the World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought" (A/AC.241/L.26). This resolution, which was negotiated on Wednesday morning in a small group, recalls General Assembly resolution 49/115 of 19 December 1994, proclaiming 17 June as the World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought. The resolution: requests the Interim Secretariat, within its mandate and taking due account of existing activities by other United Nations bodies, to promote public awareness of the Convention with a view to ensuring the success of the observance of the World Day; invites the Chair of the INCD to report to the next session of the Commission on Sustainable Development on the arrangements envisaged by the Interim Secretariat; and invites the Executive Secretary to report to the next session of the INCD on the relevant arrangements.
The Committee then adopted its report (A/AC.241/L.25). The Chair noted that his conclusions on urgent action for Africa and interim action in other regions (A/AC.241/CRP.13) and the review of the situation as regards extrabudgetary funds (A/AC.241/CRP.14) would be appended to the report.
In his closing remarks, the Chair expressed satisfaction that the Committee was able to conclude its work two days ahead of schedule. He thanked everyone for their spirit of compromise and noted that the Convention has had a number of additional signatures in New York and a number of countries have started ratification procedures. Kjelln expressed some of his own dreams about what this Convention should be, particularly that the problems of the drylands should be recognized as global problems and that there will soon be new possibilities for financing that will facilitate implementation. He hopes that the Convention will be a demonstration that the world can have a decentralized system incorporating local systems and traditional knowledge, based on well-functioning governments and regional cooperation. He also hopes that there will be technological developments on water harvesting and genetic research, as well as the full participation of women in the implementation of the Convention.
After closing statements by the Philippines (on behalf of the G-77 and China), Australia (on behalf of the OECD member States), India (on behalf of the Asian Group), Kenya (on behalf of the African Group) and Bolivia (on behalf of the Latin American and Caribbean Group), the meeting was adjourned.
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