Published by the
International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD)
Vol. 22 No. 50
Wednesday, 4 September 2002
TUESDAY, 3 SEPTEMBER 2002
Delegates to the World Summit on Sustainable
Development (WSSD) met in Plenary to hear speeches from Heads of
State and Government and senior officials throughout the day. Round
Tables convened in the morning and afternoon to discuss the theme
"Making It Happen." The Vienna setting met in the morning where it
reviewed and adopted revised language in the draft Plan of
Implementation. The Main Committee convened at 12:45 am on 4
September to review and adopt the text.
Editor’s Note: For text and video coverage of
The following Heads of State and Government and
Prime Ministers addressed the Plenary: Leo A. Falcam, Micronesia;
Natsagiin Bagabandi, Mongolia; Nursultan Nazarbayev, Kazakhstan;
Jan-Peter Balkenende, the Netherlands; Zhu Rongji, People’s Republic
of China; Alexander Kwásniewski, Poland; Maumoon Abdul Gayoom,
Maldives; Leonid D. Kuchma, Ukraine; Mathieu Kerekou, Benin; Lyonpo
Kinzang Dorji, Bhutan; Göran Persson, Sweden; Fatos Nano, Albania;
Jean-Bertrand Aristide, Haiti; Laisenia Qarase, Fiji; Bernard Makuza,
Rwanda; Pedro Verona Rodrigues Pires, Cape Verde; Isaias Afwerki,
Eritrea; Vicente Fox, Mexico; Joaquim Alberto Chissano, Mozambique;
Gustavo Noboa Bejarano, Ecuador; Tuilaepa Sailele Malielegaoi,
Samoa; Teburoro Tito, Kiribati; Kjell Magne Bondevik, Norway;
Benjamin William Mkapa, Tanzania; Bertie Ahern, Ireland; Dragan
Mikerevic, Bosnia and Herzegovina; N’Guessan Affi, Côte d’Ivoire;
Anerood Jugnauth, Mauritius; Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, Equitoreal
Guinea; Marc Ravalomanana, Madagascar; Lamine Sidime, Guinea; Pierre
Charles, Dominica; and Girma Wolde Giorgis, Ethiopia.
Vice-Presidents and Deputy Prime Ministers
representing the following countries spoke: Argentina, Belize,
Hungary, Israel, Kyrgyzstan, Malta, Nicaragua, Panama, People’s
Republic of Korea, Russian Federation, Solomon Islands, Tonga,
United Arab Emirates and Viet Nam.
Ministers and other representatives from the
following countries also addressed the Plenary: Austria, Azerbaijan,
Bangladesh, Barbados, Chad, Chile, Congo, Cuba, Cyprus, Djibouti,
Egypt, El Salvador, Georgia, Guatemala, Libyan Arab Jamahiriya,
Lithuania, Luxembourg, Myanmar, Nepal, Oman, Paraguay, Pakistan,
Philippines, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saudi Arabia, Sierra Leone,
Singapore, Slovak Republic, Somalia, Sri Lanka, Suriname, Syria,
Thailand, Trinidad and Tobago, and Yemen.
Most speakers underscored the calamitous nature
of the environmental crisis and the failure to deliver on Rio
promises. Several called for the WSSD to catalyze concrete
time-bound actions accompanied by financial commitments and
follow-up processes. Many countries expressed commitment to the
Millennium Development Goals and highlighted poverty reduction.
Several underscored the importance of partnerships and regional
cooperation in achieving sustainable development. Some speakers
stressed that security and sustainable peace are necessary
preconditions to sustainable development. Some countries noted the
significance of the International Year of the Mountains (2002).
Least developed, developing and transition
countries called for increased market access, debt relief and
elimination of trade barriers and protectionist and trade-distorting
practices, such as agricultural subsidies in industrialized nations.
LDCs and developing countries also highlighted the principle of
common but differentiated responsibilities and noted the lack of
political will in developed countries. Many speakers stressed the
need for capacity building, technology transfer, scientific
cooperation and micro-credit programmes. A few speakers underscored
the importance of small-scale renewable energy, clean water and food
security. Two speakers suggested diverting a percentage of current
military expenditures to sustainable development.
Small Island Developing States (SIDS) highlighted
their vulnerability and expressed concern about the transport of
radioactive materials, over-fishing, coral reef damage and adverse
effects of climate change, including rising sea levels. Several SIDS
requested preferential treatment, and called for sustained support
for the Barbados Programme of Action. All SIDS, with others, called
for early and universal ratification and implementation of the Kyoto
Many African countries urged the international
community to support the NEPAD initiative, address drought, combat
desertification, and support the fight against HIV/AIDS and other
epidemics by contributing to the Global Fund. Some African countries
called for access to new information and communication technologies.
Many countries highlighted the importance of people-centered
development and human rights, noting the right to develop, to live
in healthy environments, and gender equality. Some stressed
intergenerational equity, NGO participation, gender equity, respect
for indigenous peoples and children, and the need to fight
Many developed countries reiterated their
commitment to reaching the target of 0.7% GDP for ODA, and some
highlighted the need to share the benefits of globalization. Several
developed country speakers highlighted the importance of involving
the private sector, reducing unsustainable production and
consumption, phasing out subsidies and shifting from fossil fuels to
renewable energy sources.
Specific proposals included: a World Environment
Agency; an international center for sustainable development to
gather scientific data; a 0.1% development tax on international
financial transactions; allocation of 50% of current military
expenditures to a sustainable development fund; development of a new
financial architecture and demolition of the IMF; an adaptation
programme for developing countries to adjust to globalization; and a
venture capital fund for energy services.
ROUND TABLE 2 – "MAKING IT HAPPEN"
Masomeh Ebtekar, Vice President of the Islamic
Republic of Iran and Chair of Round Table 2, pressed participants to
address the specific ways and means to implement WSSD decisions upon
returning to their countries.
VENEZUELA, with others, proposed establishing an
international humanitarian fund financed from the cancellation of
external debt, funds confiscated from illegal activities and a tax
on major financial transactions. BRAZIL underscored the
vulnerability of developing countries to financial crises, supported
a 10% renewables target and highlighted the interests of megadiverse
countries. INDIA advocated a two-track approach for curbing
consumption in developed countries and supporting sustainable
consumption in developing countries.
JAPAN stressed investment in education and human
resources as the basis for poverty eradication. CHINA supported
improved cooperation in science, technology and trade. MALAYSIA
highlighted centers of excellence and technology transfer, while
noting that the digital divide could exacerbate poverty. The
MALDIVES and MONGOLIA highlighted the impacts of climate change on
small island and vulnerable States. ARMENIA discussed access to
energy and safety concerns regarding nuclear energy facilities.
HUNGARY addressed gender issues and equitable
representation. SLOVAKIA called for prioritization of limited
resources and noted the importance of an integrated approach to
sustainable development at the national and international levels.
The CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC called for technology transfer,
capacity building, peace and stability. GABON called for debt
relief, changes in loan conditions and a "Marshall Plan" approach to
development. GHANA underscored the need to repatriate certain
government funds and to control commodity prices.
NEW ZEALAND supported peer review to track
compliance with sustainable development agreements. CUBA highlighted
the financial flow from developing to developed countries for loan
interest. KIRIBATI emphasized the importance of cultural identity,
an increase in financial resources and depletion of fish stocks.
NEPAL called for heightened attention to the most vulnerable peoples
and ecosystems, including mountains. FINLAND emphasized the need for
increased cooperation among domestic agencies, and suggested
experimenting with a global tax.
The WHO said that disease is an economic drain
which requires a five-fold increase in ODA. The UNFCCC highlighted
the Kyoto Protocol’s Clean Development Mechanism as a new financial
resource, based on partnerships among developed and developing
countries, NGOs and others. ICSU recommended drawing on the
experience in climate change for lessons on how to improve
integration of science and policy within the UN. ESCWA called for
increasing coordination among UN agencies. The Round Table included
a debate about the forum’s goals.
ROUND TABLE 3 – "MAKING IT HAPPEN"
Göran Persson, Prime Minister of Sweden and Chair
of Round Table 3, moderated the session.
IRELAND, the NETHERLANDS and NIGER stressed the
importance of increasing and/or using ODA more strategically.
TUNISIA suggested creating a global grant-giving foundation.
SWAZILAND called for increased foreign direct investment and support
for agro-industries. ARGENTINA and NIGER supported debt relief.
MACEDONIA noted insufficient economic development and increasing
unemployment as major barriers to sustainable development. A number
of speakers supported Venezuela’s earlier proposal for a world
solidarity fund, and others for implementation of the Millennium
MACEDONIA stressed strategic leadership, equal
participation in decision making, decentralization and strengthening
the capacity of local authorities. MOZAMBIQUE emphasized the need
for attention to local cultural practices in order to apply aid and
technology transfer appropriately. SUDAN stated that the poor are
willing to help themselves and called for international
organizations to establish closer relationships with poor people in
target communities. GUATEMALA highlighted the recognition of
traditional and local customs and called for the development of a
new water culture in Latin America. MAURITANIA stressed the impact
of desertification and land degradation on efforts to eradicate
poverty and noted the need for further resources to combat
desertification in the Sahel region.
The NETHERLANDS underscored the need for links
between Type I and Type II outcomes, the draft Plan of
Implementation, and the WEHAB papers. IRELAND stated that
partnerships should not lead to decreased aid; warned against
imposition of donors’ agendas; and expressed its intent to create a
communications technology partnership with developing countries.
LUXEMBOURG suggested integrating science in decision making and
bringing together donor institutions in developed countries,
developing countries with innovative technologies and recipient
countries. ISRAEL endorsed the WSSD as recognition of all humanityï¿½s
attention to life, and called for a world NGO to address sustainable
development challenges in the absence of such a global governmental
body. The US introduced partnerships to address water, energy,
forests and indoor and outdoor air pollution, all of which emphasize
children. Several speakers supported establishing WSSD follow-up
YOUTH welcomed the Summit as a success and called
for clear action on the water and sanitation targets. FARMERS and
YOUTH supported elimination of agricultural subsidies. TRADE UNIONS
highlighted the need to change the situation of workers through the
creation of decent work. BUSINESS AND INDUSTRY welcomed finalization
of the draft Plan of Implementation and stated that business was
committed to the integration and implementation of the Doha,
Monterrey and Johannesburg outcomes. The SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGICAL
COMMUNITY called for increased investment in capacity building and
knowledge development and highlighted the need for urgent action to
ensure universal education.
Ambassador Dumisani Kumalo (South Africa)
reconvened the final Vienna setting in the morning to adopt the
outcomes of the Ministerial meetings, contact groups and informal
consultations. Three new documents were presented: Part I ï¿½
paragraphs agreed in the Vienna setting; Part II ï¿½ paragraphs agreed
in ministerial meetings, and Part III ï¿½ paragraphs agreed in the
ministerial meeting dealing with sustainable development in a
globalizing world. Chair Kumalo opened the floor for technical
corrections. Several delegations proposed minor changes, which were
agreed. At 12:10 pm Chair Kumalo gavelled and the text was adopted
Chair Kumalo noted that outstanding issues on
paragraphs 6(d), 58(a) and 47 would be addressed in the evening
session of the Main Committee. While not allowing discussion on
outstanding issues, the Chair gave a developed country an
opportunity to present its proposal, for information purposes, on
promoting womenï¿½s equal access to health care and related services
(6(d)). Kumalo requested delegations preparing interpretations for
inclusion in the final report to transmit them in writing to the
Secretariat within a week.
Kumalo adjourned the Vienna setting at 12:30 pm.
Chair Emil Salim (Indonesia) convened the Main
Committee at 12:45 am to consider and endorse the draft Plan of
South African Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma
presented a "package" on the outstanding paragraphs relating to
health. Paragraph 6(d) promoting women's access and participation,
eliminating violence and discrimination, and improving their status,
was presented without the Canadian amendment relating to delivery of
basic "health services" "in conformity with all human rights and
fundamental freedoms." Paragraph 47 on strengthening the capacity of
health care systems was amended such that it would deliver
"health-care services" rather than "health services," and this would
be "in conformity with human rights and fundamental freedoms,
consistent with national laws and cultural and religious values."
Paragraph 58(a) was amended such that it would promote "equitable
access to health-care services" rather than "health-care and
services." The package was adopted as presented.
After the Secretariat presented minor edits to
the draft Plan of Implementation, the Chair presented it for
endorsement. Delegates endorsed the draft Plan of Implementation at
1:15 am, which will be presented to the closing Plenary for formal
adoption. Numerous countries recorded their desire to enter
declarations and/or statements to the draft Plan of Implementation
at the closing Plenary.
The Secretariat read out a statement from the
Contact Group on Means of Implementation reflecting their
understanding that Paragraph 45ter regarding corporate
responsibility and accountability refers to existing international
agreements. ETHIOPIA pointed out that the terms of 45ter that
refer to the "full development and effective implementation of
intergovernmental agreements" were incompatible with this statement.
NORWAY added that an informal contact group does not possess the
authority to present an interpretative statement. Chair Salim
decided to retain 45ter as is, and noted that the statement
would not alter the nature and spirit of 45ter.
Delegates sought guidance on whether the draft
Political Declaration would be considered in the Main Committee or
in the closing Plenary. Minister Zuma promised that the draft
Political Declaration would be available in the morning of 4
September, and Nitin Desai, WSSD Secretary-General, added that a
decision would be taken after consultations with the Presidency, and
delegates would be informed thereafter.
IN THE CORRIDORS
With the Plan of Implementation out of the way,
delegatesï¿½ attention has focused on the Political Declaration, "The
Johannesburg Commitment on Sustainable Development." The South
Africans quietly continued to solicit views from key players on the
paper, submitted officially on 2 September by the President of the
Summit, as document A/CONF.199/L.6. Clearly this was not to be the
last version. There were indications that friendly coaxing was in
progress throughout the day to put across coveted positions, from
adding gloss to language on globalization to airbrushing the text to
a deeper shade of green. As one delegate observed, the paper would
stand a better chance of being whisked through by acclamation if it
embraced points that had evolved in the Plan of Implementation,
rather than slipping in partisan views so late in the day. The
authors are playing a deft game against a tight deadline and will
offer a new text on Wednesday morning.
THINGS TO LOOK FOR TODAY
PLENARY: The Plenary will start at 9:00 am in
the Plenary Hall to resume addresses by Heads of State and
Government and senior officials.
ROUND TABLE: The final Round Table on the
theme, "Making It Happen," will meet at 10:00 am in Ballroom 3.
POLITICAL DECLARATION: Check the Journal
for information on whether the revised draft Political
Declaration will be discussed in the Plenary or the Main Committee.
CLOSING PLENARY: The closing Plenary is
scheduled to start at 3:00 pm (check the Journal) in the
Plenary Hall and to adopt the draft Plan of Implementation, the
draft Political Declaration and the report of the conference. The
Plenary will also include: a Multi-stakeholder event; a report from
the Credentials Committee; and the closure of the WSSD.