40th Meeting of the Ramsar Standing Committee


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40th Meeting of the Standing Committee
Gland, Switzerland, 11-15 May 2009

DOC. SC40-12

Ramsar Secretariat Work Plan 2009

Action requested: The Standing Committee is invited to approve the Secretariat Work Plan for 2009.


1.      This work plan for the Ramsar Secretariat for 2009 provides a listing of the main activities to be undertaken by the Secretariat in relation to its role and responsibilities for the implementation of the Convention’s Strategic Plan 2009-2015 adopted by COP10 Resolution X.1.

2.      Since the Strategic Plan provides the overarching structure and content for implementation of its strategies for each of the Convention’s bodies and processes, the work plan is structured as Secretariat activities and “Key Result Areas” (KRAs) for each activity under each of the Strategic Plan strategies for which the Secretariat undertakes direct implementation activity. Only these Strategic Plan strategies are listed below. Of course, during its work the Secretariat also provides support and advice to Contracting Parties and other Convention bodies and processes in their implementation of many of the other strategies established under the Strategic Plan.

Ramsar Secretariat Work Plan 2009

1.10.1 Continue development of the Danone/Ramsar/IUCN “Danone Fund for Nature”. Continue the “Biosphere Connections” partnership with Star Alliance

Danone Fund for Nature implementation mechanisms finalized
Biosphere Connections utilized to support participation in key Ramsar meetings

1.10.2 In line with Resolution X.12, work with Contracting Parties and the Ramsar partners to make good use of the Principles for partnerships between the Ramsar Convention and the business sector, as appropriate, including within the frameworks of existing national, regional, and global initiatives and commitments.

Resolution X.12 principles applied in any developments of business sector relationships

STRATEGY 2.2 Ramsar site information

Ensure that the Ramsar Sites Information Service, including the Ramsar Sites Database, is available and enhanced as a tool for guiding the further designation of wetlands for the List of Wetlands of International Importance and for research and assessment, and is effectively managed by the Secretariat. (STRP, Secretariat, IOPs)

2.2.1 Manage and process Ramsar Site designations and updates

KRA: All RISs received from Contracting Parties fully processed in a timely manner

2.2.2 Ensure the maintenance and further development of the Ramsar Sites Information Service (RSIS)

KRA: Timely maintenance of the Ramsar Sites Database and maintenance and development of other aspects of the RSIS to provide support tools for Parties in Ramsar site designation, by Wetlands International under contract to the Secretariat.

STRATEGY 2.6 Ramsar site status

Monitor the condition of Ramsar sites and address negative changes in their ecological character, notify the Ramsar Secretariat of changes affecting Ramsar sites, and apply the Montreux Record, if appropriate, and Ramsar Advisory Mission as tools to address problems. (CPs, Secretariat, IOPs)

2.6.1 Advise Parties on Article 3.2, Montreux Record and Ramsar Advisory Mission (RAM) issues

KRAs: All Article 3.2 issues raised with the relevant Parties; RAMs prepared and undertaken when requested by Parties

STRATEGY 3.1 Synergies and partnerships with MEAs and IGOs

Work as partners with international and regional multilateral environmental agreements (MEAs) and other intergovernmental agencies (IGOs). (CPs, Secretariat, IOPs, STRP)

3.1.1 Implement, with the Convention on Biological Diversity, a 4th Joint Work Plan 2007-2010, and develop a 5th JWP for consideration in 2010

KRAs: 4th JWP implemented and implementation reviewed; 5th JWP drafted

3.1.2 Review Joint Work Plans with the Convention on Migratory Species (CMS)/African-Eurasian Migratory Waterbird Agreement (AEWA) and with UNESCO-Man and the Biosphere Programme (MAB)

KRA: CMS/AEWA and UNESCO-MAB joint work plans reviewed and updated

3.1.3 Use proactively the Biodiversity Liaison Group (BLG) and the Joint Liaison Group (JLG) for the Rio Conventions to improve synergies

KRA: BLG meetings attended at SG/DSG level; JLG meetings attended as observer (SG/DSG level)

3.1.4 Promote the work of the Convention at important international meetings

KRA: SRA level or above represented Convention at key global and regional meetings

3.1.5 Continue to review the effectiveness of Memoranda of Understanding and agreements with other organisations

KRA: All Memoranda and annexed plans either updated, replaced or annulled

3.1.6 Organise Secretariat meetings with partners and other stakeholders, as needed

KRA: Meetings prepared in timely manner

STRATEGY 3.2 Regional initiatives

Support existing regional arrangements under the Convention and promote additional arrangements. (CPs, Secretariat, IOPs)

3.2.1 Manage the core funding support for, and monitor the implementation of, regional initiatives approved by Resolution X.6

KRA: Approved funds transferred to regional initiatives; advice on implementation progress and issues provided to Standing Committee

STRATEGY 3.3 International assistance

Promote international assistance to support the conservation and wise use of wetlands, while ensuring that environmental safeguards and assessments are an integral component of all development projects that affect wetlands, including foreign and domestic investments. (CPs, Secretariat, IOPs)

3.3.1 Develop and implement the establishment of a Partnership Officer post in the Secretariat, as mandated by Resolution X.2

KRA: Mechanism established for implementation of Partnership Officer role

STRATEGY 3.4 Sharing information and expertise

Promote the sharing of expertise and information concerning the conservation and wise use of wetlands. (CPs, Secretariat)

3.4.1 With the Standing Committee, STRP and interested Parties, review efficacy of COP10 National Report Format, and initiate development of structure and content of COP11 format

KRA: COP11 National Report Format structure agreed

3.4.2 Assist Parties with Convention implementation

KRA: Advice and support on national implementation issues provided, in regional and global contexts, to Parties as requested, including through missions to Parties


Support, and assist in implementing at all levels, where appropriate, the Convention’s Communication, Education, Participation and Awareness Programme (Resolution X.8) for promoting the conservation and wise use of wetlands through communication, education, participation, and awareness (CEPA) and work towards wider awareness of the Convention’s goals, mechanisms, and key findings. (CPs, Secretariat, training centres, IOPs, Advisory Board on Capacity Building)

4.1.1 Implement the CEPA Programme, and further develop a comprehensive plan for CEPA internally, including the activities undertaken with Danone Group and other private sector actors, through CEPA Oversight Panel

KRA: CEPA Programme implemented, with input of the CEPA Oversight Panel

4.1.2 Prepare and publish a 4th edition of the Ramsar Wise Use Handbooks and Ramsar Technical Reports (RTRs)

KRA: Publication of 4th Edition Handbooks completed; RTRs published in a timely manner

4.1.3 Fully redevelop the appearance and structure of the Ramsar Web site

KRA: New-look Ramsar Web site launched and fully functional

4.1.4 Maintain Ramsar Web site, listserves and other electronic information provision

KRA: Topical Ramsar-related information provided to all stakeholders

4.1.5 Seek to enhance the development of capacity building through the Ramsar Advisory Board on Capacity Building and the regional centres

KRA: Ramsar Advisory Board mechanism to contribute to capacity-building for Parties agreed

4.1.6 Prepare materials and advice for WWD 2010 (and WWD 2009 follow-up)

KRA: WWD 2010 materials prepared and dispatched; WWD 2009 reports placed on Web site

4.1.7 Monitor implementation of COP10 Resolution X.3, the “Changwon Declaration”

KRA: Implementation progress by Parties, Convention Bodies and IOPs compiled, as advised

STRATEGY 4.2 Convention financial capacity

Provide the financial resources necessary for the Convention’s governance, mechanisms and programmes to achieve the expectations of the Conference of the Contracting Parties, within the availability of existing resources and by the effective use of such resources; explore and enable options and mechanisms for mobilization of new and additional resources for implementation of the Convention. (CPs, Secretariat)

4.2.1 Undertake project evaluations and reviews (SGF, WFF, SFA etc.)

KRA: All project proposals and reports evaluated

4.2.2 Make representations to Parties in arrears with annual contributions

KRA: Meetings with missions made

4.2.3 Manage the Convention budget in a timely and efficient manner

KRA: Maintain financial records and make all payments in a timely manner, reporting to Standing Committee Subgroup on Finance

STRATEGY 4.3 Convention bodies’ effectiveness

Ensure that the Conference of the Contracting Parties, Standing Committee, Scientific and Technical Review Panel, and Secretariat are operating at a high level of effectiveness to support the implementation of the Convention. (CPs, Secretariat)

4.3.1 Organise and hold Standing Committee 40, May 2009

KRA: SC40 held and outcomes disseminated

4.3.2 Provide periodic intersessional briefings to Standing Committee members, as required during the year

KRA: At least two briefings sent to SC

4.3.3 Organise and hold STRP15, March 2009

KRA: STRP15 held; work plan developed and transmitted to Standing Committee

4.3.4 Maintain an electronic system for communication amongst STRP members & with its National Focal Points

KRA: STRP Support Service (SuSe) maintained and redeveloped to support STRP intersessional work; STRP NFPs assisted to have improved involvement in STRP’s work

4.3.5 Support STRP in its elaboration and delivery of priority tasks in its Work Plan

KRA: STRP supported in initiating implementation of its work plan High Priority tasks

4.3.6 Arrange periodic briefings of missions in Geneva on activities taking place between Standing Committee meetings

KRA: At least one missions briefing held

4.3.7 With the Management Working Group (MWG), keep under review the existing management structures of the Secretariat and Convention

KRA: Any changes to management structures recommended by MWG implemented by Secretariat, as appropriate

4.3.8 Support the work of the Ad Hoc Working Group on Administrative Reform

KRA: Ad Hoc Working Group’s meetings and intersessional work supported

4.3.9 Finalise and disseminate to Contracting Parties and others the results of COP10

KRA: All COP10 results finalized and disseminated through Web site and on CD-ROM

4.3.10 With Romania, develop and agree the host country Memorandum of Understanding for COP11

KRA: COP11 MoU developed and Romania fully advised on COP preparations

4.3.11 Undertake general Administration of the Secretariat and Convention

KRA: Parties, and other stakeholders, provided with timely and efficient service

STRATEGY 4.4 Working with IOPs and others

Maximize the benefits of working with the Convention’s International Organization Partners (IOPs) and others. (Secretariat, IOPs)

4.4.1 Work with IOPs to develop a common understanding and framework for assistance in delivering the Convention’s implementation

KRA: Collaborative activities identified and agreed

4.4.2 Facilitate and enhance joint activities on the ground between IOPs and Ramsar Administrative Authorities

KRA: Joint IOP/AA activities facilitated and reported

STRATEGY 5.1 Membership

Secure universal membership of the Convention and provide an appropriate level of service. (CPs, Secretariat)

5.1.1 Advise countries in the process of accession on any issues of clarification, and on preparing their first Ramsar Information Sheet, as necessary

KRA: Bhutan, Ethiopia and others further assisted for accession

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