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INTERNATIONAL INSTITUTIONAL ARRANGEMENTS

The text on institutional arrangements addresses four issues: greater coherence in various intergovernmental organizations and processes; the role of relevant UN organizations and institutions; the future role and programme of work of the CSD; and the CSD’s methods of work. The entire text was negotiated informally.

The introductory paragraph notes that, “in light of the ongoing discussions on reform” within the UN, international institutional arrangements in the area of sustainable development are intended to contribute to the goal of strengthening the entire UN system. In the section on greater coherence in intergovernmental organizations and processes, arrangements for convention secretariats are called on to provide effective support and efficient services, and “appropriate autonomy.” Delegates deleted a reference to convening regional meetings to review national reports. The revised text only states that regional meetings of experts are to be supported by UN regional commissions.

In the section on the role of UN bodies, the resident coordinator system is to be enhanced “in full consultation with national governments.” The 4 April 1997 decision of the UNEP Governing Council on governance and other related decisions are relevant in the context of UNEP’s role as the leading global environmental authority that sets the global environmental agenda. A reference to UNEP assistance in addressing countries’ environmental problems, including through the provision of policy and advisory services, was deleted. Delegates retained a call for “a revitalized UNEP” to be supported by “adequate, stable and predictable funding.” UNCTAD’s role in Agenda 21 implementation is “in accordance with General Assembly resolution 51/167 and relevant decisions of the Trade and Development Board on the work programme.” The text calls for “adequate” replenishment of the International Development Association and “new and additional resources, with a view to an equitable burden sharing,” for the “satisfactory” replenishment of the GEF. The operationalization of the global mechanism of the CCD is called for.

The section on the CSD programme of work states that the CSD “has a role to play” in assessing the challenges of globalization on sustainable development and it should “coordinate” with other ECOSOC subsidiary bodies, rather than act “as a kind of ‘main commission’ of ECOSOC” as one delegation suggested. Delegates agreed that the CSD should avoid unnecessary duplication and repetition of work undertaken by other relevant fora, rather than focus on issues “not adequately addressed in other international fora.”

In the section on CSD methods of work, delegates called for “the possible development of modalities for reviews by and among those countries, which voluntarily agree to do so, within regions,” rather than regional peer reviews. The text calls for strengthened interaction with representatives of major groups and encourages major groups to adopt arrangements for coordination and interaction in providing inputs to the CSD. The Secretary-General is invited to review the functioning of the High-Level Advisory Board and present proposals on ways to promote more interaction between it and the CSD. ECOSOC is asked to consider how to make the work of the Committee on New and Renewable Sources of Energy and on Energy for Development and the Committee on Natural Resources compatible and supportive with the work of the CSD. Finally, the next UNGA review of Agenda 21 implementation is to take place in 2002, the modalities of which are to be determined at a later stage.

The final draft contains bracketed options calling for designation of the GEF as the permanent financial mechanism for the FCCC and the CBD, or for funding for Agenda 21 to be provided in a way that maximizes the availability of new and additional resources and uses all available funding sources and mechanisms.

CSD Multi-Year Programme of Work: The CSD programme of work is noted in this section and annexed to the text. Poverty and consumption and production patterns are to be overriding issues for each session’s consideration. The issues to be considered in 1998 are: [integrated freshwater management]; transfer of technology/capacity- building/education/science/awareness-raising; and industry. Issues for 1999 include the review of the Programme of Action for SIDS and: oceans and seas; consumption and production patterns; and tourism. Issues for 2000 are: integrated planning and management of land resources; financial resources/trade and investment/economic growth; and agriculture, possibly to include forestry. The 2001 issues are: [atmosphere][energy]; information for decision-making and participation; and [energy]/transport. A comprehensive review is scheduled for 2002.

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