ENB:05:82 [Next] . [Previous] . [Contents]

CLOSING PLENARY

The Closing Plenary began at 4:00 pm on 25 April 1997. CSD Chair Tolba introduced the summaries of the dialogues with major groups (E/CN.17/1997/L.2-11), which were adopted. Tolba said they would appear as the Vice-Chairs’ summaries of the sessions in an annex to the negotiated text, along with the Chair’s summary of the High-Level Segment. The EU said the timing of major group dialogues did not allow sufficient input to the negotiations and suggested that future major group dialogues address the CSD’s thematic issue at an earlier stage, possibly during the Intersessional Working Group.

Amb. Amorim introduced the agreements Drafting Group II reached on cross-sectoral issues and means of implementation. Derek Osborn reported on the results of negotiations on sectoral issues and the assessment of progress since UNCED in Drafting Group I. Delegates then considered the negotiated text paragraph by paragraph and made corrections as necessary. Many developing countries expressed their desire to return to the “agreed” paragraph on mobilization of domestic resources, which the Plenary bracketed. Delegates also discussed whether to annex three proposals that were introduced after the initial compilation of amendments was made (US-Norway-Malaysia regarding an intergovernmental process on financial issues; Bangladesh on micro-credit; and Australia on NGO dialogue with the WTO’s Committee on Trade and Environment). Chair Tolba said he would reference the proposals in the CSD’s report, but not in an annex.

Delegates adopted two draft decisions. On the CSD programme of work, the CSD took note of document E/CN.17/1997/CRP.1 containing the proposals of the Secretary- General regarding the programme of work under the sub-programme “Sustainable Development” to be included in the Proposed Programme Budget for the biennium 1988- 1999. The CSD noted the preliminary nature of these proposals, and invited the Committee for Programme Coordination, the Advisory Committee on Administrative and Budgetary Questions and the Fifth Committee in their deliberations on the Programme Budget for the next biennium to take due account, as appropriate, of the outcome of the Nineteenth Special Session of the UN General Assembly, as well as of the results of the ongoing reform of the UN Secretariat.

The CSD also adopted a decision on modalities for the full and comprehensive review of the Barbados Programme of Action adopted by the Global Conference on the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing States. In the decision, the CSD, inter alia: recognizes the need to review outstanding chapters of the Programme of Action prior to full review in 1999; decides that its sixth session in 1998 will undertake the review of all the outstanding chapters and issues of the Programme of Action; and urges all governments, intergovernmental bodies and major groups to commence preparations for the full review and comprehensive assessment of progress made in implementation. It also: recommends that the General Assembly convene a two-day special session immediately preceding its 54th session for an in-depth assessment and appraisal of the implementation of the Programme of Action; and decides that the seventh session of the CSD (1999) will carry out the full review of the Programme of Action within its approved work programme. This review will be considered as the preparatory process for the special session on SIDS. The decision also states that the preparatory process for its seventh session shall assist the Commission in carrying out the review and appraisal.

Rapporteur Czeslaw Wieckowski (Poland) then presented the draft report of CSD-5 (E/CN.17/1997/L.1 and the informal, English-only papers containing the final draft). Delegates adopted the report, taking note of the informal papers and authorizing the Rapporteur to incorporate the proceedings of the closing Plenary.

Chair Tolba introduced the “proposed draft political statement,” authored by the Chair and Vice-Chair Monika Linn-Locher. He explained that several iterations had circulated during CSD-5 and proposed that it be brief and in language accessible to the media. He asked delegates to send their amendments to the Secretariat, on the basis of which a redraft would be distributed two weeks before UNGASS. He suggested that informal consultations take place immediately prior to UNGASS so that the Committee of the Whole could adopt the text early in its deliberations. The EU supported Tolba’s anticipated procedure and said the draft is proceeding in a positive and balanced way. He said negotiations would take too long if a compilation of all amendments were used as the basis for negotiations. The G-77/CHINA said the Chair’s draft contents have been very different from their inputs and expressed frustration with the drafting process. He demanded that the text be formally negotiated. INDIA, VENEZUELA, CUBA and NIGERIA called for an open-ended negotiation process.

Chair Tolba thanked the Drafting Group Chairs, the Vice-Chairs and the Secretariat. He declared CSD-5 adjourned at 9:45 pm.

[Return to start of article]