Diplomatic notification 1999/8: 24th Standing Committee meeting

08/09/1999

Notification 1999/8

Agenda for the 24th Meeting of the Ramsar Convention Standing Committee

29 November to 2 December 1999

The Bureau of the Convention on Wetlands (Ramsar, Iran, 1971) presents its compliments and has the honour to refer to the following:

As communicated to all Contracting Parties through Notification 1999/4 of 28 June 1999, the 24th meeting of the Standing Committee will be held at the Ramsar Bureau in Gland, Switzerland, from 29 November to 2 December 1999. Enclosed is the Draft (Annotated) Agenda and Programme for the meeting.

In accordance with now established practice, it is planned that on Monday, 29 November, the Subgroup on Finance will meet, with the Standing Committee meeting itself commencing on Tuesday, 30 November 1999.

Members of the Standing Committee are: Algeria, Argentina, Armenia, Australia (Chair), Costa Rica, France, India, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, Norway, Slovak Republic, Spain, Switzerland, Togo, Trinidad & Tobago, and Uganda (Vice Chair). Costa Rica, as host of the last Conference, and Spain, as host of the next Conference, are also voting members. The Netherlands and Switzerland have the status of Permanent Observers. The official International Organisation Partners of the Convention (BirdLife International, IUCN, Wetlands International, and WWF International) are also invited to attend. Members of the Subgroup on Finance are Algeria, Argentina, Armenia (Chair), Japan and Mexico.

All other Contracting Parties are entitled to attend as observers, and, as indicated by COP7 Resolution VII.1 (paragraph 13), "countries which are not Contracting Parties but have expressed an interest in joining the Convention may be also admitted as observers". The Bureau will be grateful if Contracting Party Observers and those non-Contracting Party countries seeking Observer status at the meeting would notify their intention to participate in that capacity by 30 September 1999, so that working papers may be dispatched when finalised. It should be noted that, due to financial constraints, the deliberations of the Standing Committee are carried out in English only, and that working papers for the Standing Committee are similarly produced in that language only. Likewise, financial constraints prevent the Bureau from providing financial support to assist Observer states in attending. Such support can only be offered to the members of the Standing Committee from developing countries and those in economic transition.

Those Contracting Parties which are unable to attend the meeting as Observers are invited to note the enclosed annotated Agenda and, as appropriate, offer views and opinions on the issues and matters under discussion to a suitable representative from their region.

The Bureau of the Convention on Wetlands respectfully requests that the content of the present Note be communicated to the competent national authorities and avails itself of this opportunity to renew the assurance of its highest consideration.

Gland, 30 August 1999

Encl: Draft Agenda and Programme

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