PLENARY: The first item on the agenda is a report by the host Government. Harcourt Lewis, recently appointed Minister of the Environment in Barbados, will give details on the state of preparations for the Conference. He met yesterday with UNDP to discuss plans for the sustainable development technology exhibition and talked to NGOs about plans for an NGO forum. Today, Lewis should be able to give a detailed overview of the host Government's preparations for all three events.
The second item on the agenda will be a review of the operations of the voluntary fund. Look for signals from donor countries that have not yet made commitments to the fund (such as the United States) that they will indeed do so. There will be some gentle nudging of those who have committed funds, but whose checks have not yet arrived. Talk of a second PrepCom will prove abortive without additional funds.
INFORMAL SESSION: After discussion of the voluntary fund, the Chair will adjourn Plenary and convene an informal meeting to continue discussing the AOSIS/G-77 paper. At its meeting late yesterday afternoon, AOSIS began drafting language on means of implementation. While many AOSIS members recognize that there are gaps in the document as it was introduced (including environmental legislation, references to the role of women, and general strengthening of human resource language), they are looking to other countries and especially NGOs to suggest language. Meanwhile, the OECD countries met yesterday to look at structure -- how to get a clearer idea of what is ongoing at the national level and subsequently define the other two points in the triangle, regional and international coordination and support. There are also concerns about follow-up and implementation. A matrix of existing programmes, priority issues, and levels of response may be needed.
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