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COP 4 Decision IV/3
This decision has been retired.

Issues related to biosafety

The Conference of the Parties,

Recalling its decisions II/5 and III/20 on issues related to biosafety,

Recalling also part A of the annex to its decision III/24, and table 1 of its decision IV/17, which contain the budgets of the Trust Fund for the Convention on Biological Diversity for the bienniums 1997­1998 and 1999-2000, respectively,

Having considered the report of the fourth meeting of the Open-ended Ad Hoc Working Group on Biosafety, which met in Montreal, from 5 to 13 February 1998,

Recalling the recommendations of the fourth meeting of the Open-ended Ad Hoc Working Group on Biosafety that:

    (a) In order to complete its work, the Open-ended Working Group on Biosafety should hold two further meetings, with a duration of two weeks and one week, respectively;
    (b) The first of those two meetings should be held in Montreal, from 17 to 28 August 1998; and
    (c) In the event of it not being possible to hold in 1998 the final meeting of the Open-ended Ad Hoc Working Group on Biosafety, followed by a meeting of the Conference of the Parties to adopt the Protocol, these meetings should be convened early in 1999 but, in any event, no later than February 1999,

1. Accepts the recommendations of the Open-ended Ad Hoc Working Group on Biosafety;

2. Decides:

    (a) That the bureau of the Open-ended Ad Hoc Working Group on Biosafety shall be composed of representatives of Argentina, Bahamas, Denmark, Ethiopia, Hungary, India, Mauritania, New Zealand, Russian Federation and Sri Lanka;
    (b) That the members of the bureau shall remain in office, under the chairmanship of Mr. Veit Koester (Denmark) until the adoption of the Protocol on Biosafety;

3. Decides that the final meeting of the Open-ended Ad Hoc Working Group on Biosafety and an extraordinary meeting of the Conference of the Parties will be held in February 1999. These meetings shall be held at the seat of the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity in Montreal, Canada, unless an offer to host these meetings is received by the Executive Secretary no later than 1 August 1998;

4. Decides, in accordance with rule 13 of the rules of procedure, that the agenda of the extraordinary meeting will address all matters relating to:

    (a) Adoption of the Protocol on Biosafety; and
    (b) Preparations for the first Meeting of the Parties to the Protocol with regard to, inter alia, interim arrangements, taking into account the budgetary provision made for this purpose in accordance with decision IV/17 on the budget of the Trust Fund for the Convention;

5. Decides that written submissions by Governments of provisions to be included in the Protocol must be received by the Executive Secretary by 1 July 1998, in accordance with the six-month rule for consideration of the draft Protocol under Article 28, paragraph 3, of the Convention, thereby enabling the Open­ended Ad hoc Working Group on Biosafety to consider those proposals during its meeting in August 1998;

6. Decides that the Protocol shall be opened for signature at the Headquarters of the United Nations in New York no later than three months from the date of its adoption by the Conference of the Parties;

7. Calls on Parties to consider providing voluntary contributions to facilitate participation in the above meetings by developing country Parties, in particular least developed States and small island developing countries, and Parties with economies in transition.

  • United Nations
  • United Nations Environment Programme